|menu prev next|
A church has existed on this site since the 12th Century. Nothing remains of this early church - it may have been built with wood and thatch. There was extensive reconstruction in 1658 and again in 1771. The current building dates from 1870 when the then Lord of the manor, James Raper Lamplugh left £2,000 for its rebuilding.
In very early times the church belonged to the Diocese of York until, in 1541, it was transferred to the new bishopric of Chester. Since 1850 it has belonged to Carlisle.
The architect, Butterfield, incorporated parts of the previous church to form the vestry and this includes a 15th Century window with two carved faces. This new church was opened by the Bishop of Carlisle on the 23rd of August 1870.
The church contains a tombstone to John Lamplugh, who died in 1643. It also has a stone topped alter which is rare due to their being considered pagan and mostly removed.
Of the two bells which hang in the bell cote, one is particularly interesting having recently been found to date from the fifteenth century, expertly made, possibly the work of the famous bell founders of York. Its companion is Victorian, perhaps a replacement for an original one.
The churchyard as it now stands extends from the original one, forming the square area nearest to the Green.
There are some interesting church records, such as registers detailing deaths within the Parish between 1658 and 1663:
"Kild at Kelton fell races....3
Took cold sleeping in church....2
Frightened to death by fairies....4
Old woman drowned upon trial for witchcraft....3
Broke his neck robbing a hen roost....1
Crost in love....1
Hanged for clipping and coyning....7
Mrs Lamplugh's cordial water....2
Knocked on ye head with a quart bottle....1
By Parsons bull....2
A little way from the church between Lamplugh Mill House and Mill Gill
Head, stands a Corpse Cross on which coffins would be set after having been
carried anything up to twelve miles, to give the bearers a rest.
St Mary's Church, Ennerdale Bridge The Parish of Ennerdale was originally served by the Benedictine Abbey of St Bees. In 1535 William, Abbot of St Mary's, York, granted the people of Ennerdale the right to burial in their own churchyard, provided they maintained a chapel and paid a curate. The early chapel remained in use until it was demolished in 1857, prior to the construction of the current church. This church was completed in 1858 to the design of Charles Eaglesfield of Maryport, in a Romanesque style, with a number of 'Norman' features, including the south doorway.
The three stained glass windows in St Mary's
The foundation stone for the Mission was laid on 29th May, 1886. It was intended that this new building would help meet the social and religious needs of the village which was expanding rapidly due to the iron ore mining in the area. The Mission was designed by T L Banks of Whitehaven and built by J Green of Pardshaw at a cost of £564. The Bishop of Carlisle opened the Mission on 21st September 1886 and the service included a hymn composed for the occasion by Canon H Ranwsley, Vicar of Crosthwaite, Keswick, but now better known as one of the founders of the National Trust.