Saturday, 18 April 2009

St Cuthbert, Kentmere

St Cuthbert
Kentmere
Nr Staveley
Cumbria

Kentmere's church can be found at the end of a six mile B road that heads North out of Staveley, following the course of the River Kent.

Above. A view of the church from Hodgson Brow to the West.

This is the only photo I currently have of the church, taken from the road leading down to Kentmere Hall, for which it was probably originally built as a chapel of ease.

Above. A view of the South porch, showing the huge and ancient yew tree.

Historical records don't make any mention of the church until about 1692....and the graveyard of the present church wasn't consecrated until 1701, so it's likely that all that may have stood here before was a small family chapel belonging to the hall.

Above. A view of the church from the East.

By all accounts, the church underwent a substantial rebuild in 1866, with further alterations made in the 1930's, but the church has retained its 16th century wooden roof beams.

Above. Looking down the nave towards the East window.

The door in the South wall of the church, opens onto a fantastic view up Kentmere, uninterrupted for miles. Check this link.

1 comment:

Donna said...

Lovely photo. From inside the church looking through the beautiful window I can't help but think of the 121 Psalm: "I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help".

In addition to your description, a short history of the church was included in the
Transactions of the Cumberland & Westmorland Antiquarian & Archaeological Society, Volume XXXIV, New Series, published Kendal; printed by Titus Wilson & Son, Highgate, 1934, page 195:

Kentmere Church
Dealing with the theories as to the Norman origin of this building, Mr. McIntire (W.T. McIntire, B.A., F.S.A. Scot.) stated that the earliest mention he could find of the church was in a deed of 1453, relative to the neighbouring Brockstone farm. It was then a chapel under Kendal. The thickness of its walls might give some support to the tradition that it had once been a fortified church. He mentioned some of the benefactors of the church, amongst whom were the Aireys, a family connected with Kentmere from the 14th century onwards. The particular benefactor was John Airey, the nephew of Bernard Gilpin, “the Apostle of the North.” He pointed out a tablet to the memory of Bernard Gilpin, erected as the outcome of a suggestion by the late Canon Rawnsley upon the occasion of the Society’s last visit to Kentmere in 1913.