Friday, 4 September 2009

St John, Helsington

St John
Near Kendal

Helsington church occupies a remote spot some three miles South West of Kendal, on the Eastern side of Lyth Valley. From this vantage point, there are fantastic views down the valley out towards Milnthorpe Sands, Arnside and Storth....all of which can be seen on a fine day.

Built in 1898 and extended in 1910, this is a relatively 'young' church, but local tradition has it that there is a wall from an earlier church, dated 1726, hidden beneath the rough cast walls. The only records of this earlier church I can find are as follows: "Helsington Chapel built by subscription and endowed by John Jackson of Holeslack. Consecrated by Bp. Peplowe in 1745." Unfortunately the church appears to be kept locked, so I was unable to gain entry on my last visit. St John is a simple, single chambered building and contains only one stained glass window...mounted in the East end of the church.

The church is an excellent starting point for a number of short circular walks encompassing the Lyth Valley, Brigsteer Woods and other areas in this beautiful part of the South Lakes area.

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