Into Eden – Great Salkeld

Day 2

The Druids

I started the day with a walk around Penrith in search of coffee and hogbacks.

A monument in St Andrews churchyard known the the Giant’s Grave. Legend has it that it is the grave of a knight called Ewain Cæsarius, the four hogbacks are said to represent four wild boars that he killed in the forest of Inglewood. In reality the monument is comprised of four hogback stones and two ancient crosses. All of which have seen better days.

A Hogback is an Anglo- Scandinavian grave marker dating to between the 10th and 12th centuries. They are generally found in locations that were settled by the Danes.

Giants Grave

I was keen to get moving so didn’t take the time to have a look around St Andrews church. I later learned that it was designed by Nicholas Hawksmoor, I will have to return.

Great Salkeld.

The village is steeped in history, located on a Roman road and river crossing point, the route later became a major drove road between England and Scotland. The road was also a main route for invaders, marauders, reivers and moss troopers.

St Cuthberts

The local church founded in the 9th century is a wonderful illustration of the history of this part of the north of England.  The church is dedicated to Saint Cuthbert as this was one of the resting places for his body when monks removed it from Lindesfarne following the 9th century Viking conquest of the kingdom of Northumbria.

Cuddy

A beautiful stained glass depicting Cuthbert with an Eider or ‘Cuddy’s Duck’ at his feet

The church tower looks out of proportion with the rest of the church, this is because it was built in the 13th century as a defensive tower, a sanctuary from the invading Scots. The stone walls of the tower are 6ft thick with thin window slits and a narrow iron entrance door. This style of building is known as a Pele.

Throughout the Middle Ages the North of England was a dangerous place. Following the Harrowing of the North by the Normans, Scottish raiding parties would regularly move down into England to steal cattle and goods and take slaves. The 12th century Chronicler Simeon of Durham wrote Scarce a little house in Scotland was to be found without English slaves of one or other sex. 

Aside from the regular raids by brigands from the north, between 1060 and 1745 there were at least 10 formal invasions by Scottish armies into England.

Armour

The 17th century armour mounted on the church walls bears witness to the area’s turbulent past.

Arch

For me, the crowning glory of the church is the 11th Century Romanesque arch

A Medieval cross slab and a Roman altar can be found in the porch

These 3 large boulders of red sandstone in the graveyard are a bit of a puzzle. I cannot find any references to them.

Into Eden-Bolton

Continuing into the Eden Valley, still trying to process what I’d seen at Long Marton, I stopped in Bolton village to visit the Church of All Saints.

Dedicating your church to All Saints seems a bit lazy to me, mind you, in Middlesbrough, the church now known as the Sacred Heart used to be called The Sacred Heart of Jesus and St Philomena. I don’t know what went on but St. Philomena was dropped from the team and the church became, The Sacred Heart. So I suppose dedicating your church to all saints is simply hedging your bets against the vagaries of church politics.

Momento

The church dates from the 12th century

Effigy

This ghost-like effigy is close to the church entrance. She has her head is on a pillow indicating that she was once horizontal. Sources differ on her age between the 12th and 14th centuries.Knights

This carving is built into the wall over the north door and depicts two knights jousting. Its origins are unknown.

Remnants from the early fabric of the church.

Charles Laughton

This well-fed local caught my eye and put me in mind of Charles Laughton

 

Into Eden – Tympana

St Margaret and St James Church – Long Marton

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I had been very much looking forward to visiting this beautiful church with pre-conquest origins.

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The porch, I cannot find any information on this stone, it looks Roman. The sheep skull on top of the stone is an odd sight in a church. Then I looked up at the entrance door..

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.. I had seen pictures of the tympanum but to see it up close, breathtakingly beautiful.

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I had to sit down and drink in the beauty of the carving. If I wasn’t to see anything else on this trip, this was worth the journey.

Christianity has an odd relationship with dragons.

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A thirteenth century parish chest. Local built, the wood is three inches thick.

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A cross slab put to good use as a lintel.

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A lovely window by Stanley Scott of Sunderland, a memorial to a local surgeon.

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I walked into the bell tower to look for the second tympanum. The light was fairly dim, the motifs barely visible, my heart sank.

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Then I noticed the light switch..

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOne church, two breathtaking moments.

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A beautiful sneck on the church gate, I’m an ungodly person, I love this church.

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Even the views are beautiful – Knock Pike

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