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Modern Britain

Gallery: Churches of North Yorkshire

by Peter Kessler, 11 September 2011

 

 

Hambleton Part 5: Churches of Great Smeaton to Great Langton

Church of St Eloy, Great Smeaton

The Church of St Eloy, Great Smeaton, is on the northern side of the A167 road, virtually opposite the primary school building. The earliest parts of the church are fourteenth century, including the nave arcade. The building was thoroughly renovated in 1863, and it seems only then to have been dedicated to St Eloy, the patron saint of smiths. The dedication is common in France, but this may be its only use in England. The original dedication (if there was one) is unknown.

St Peter's Church Birkby

St Peter's Church Birkby lies immediately south of Birkby Manor, on the south-western corner of Birkby Lane. The original church building was probably twelfth century, but this was replaced in 1776 by the present Georgian construction. The rectangular Gothic building was extensively altered in 1872 by the Victorians, but some surviving original Norman parts were discovered during the work, including part of the shaft of an old Saxon cross built into the west end wall.

The Parish Church of All Saints East Cowton

The Parish Church of All Saints East Cowton stands on the southern side of the main road, with St Mary's Close behind it and the junction of Raby Lane opposite The church was built in 1909 to replace the old church, since demolished, which stood outside the village, at the cemetery on the North Cowton road. The location is an elevated one at the west end of the village and the building contains an interesting circular Norman font and a fine decorated organ.

Church of St Mary the Virgin

The Church of St Mary the Virgin, South Cowton, is located to the south of the village, off the B1263 at Atley Fields, midway between North Cowton and Pepper Arden (and about three hundred metres north by north-west of the castle). It appears to date from the fourteenth century, although elements of the nave and chancel may be older. As it was some distance from the village, and in a bad state of repair, it was made redundant, but it still holds a few services.

Danby Wiske Parish Church

Danby Wiske Parish Church is on the eastern side of Mounstrall Lane, at the southern end of the village. The Norman church, which bears no dedication, was first built around 1100. The south door and the lower part of the south wall date from this period. The chancel was rebuilt and a north aisle added to the nave in the fourteenth century, giving the church very much the same plan that it has to day. The tower was added in the sixteenth century and was restored in 2010.

St Wilfrid, Great Langton

St Wilfrid, Great Langton, is on the eastern side of the lane which heads south from the village, with a footpath leading across the fields to the church. The nave was built about 1140, but only the entrance doorways in the north and south walls survive (the north has been blocked up). Rebuilding was undertaken in the thirteen and fourteenth centuries, and the bell cote was added about 1680. The Good Shepherd Mission Chapel was licensed to serve Great Langton in 1877.

All photos on this page contributed by Colin Hinson.

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