YorkshireHome / Church Life / Big Ted / St Mary's Churches / Yorkshire

I first went to Yorkshire in May 2019 (when I visited some bits of Lancashire as well). I hope to go back sometime and find some more St Mary's (maybe it will be warm and sunny next time!). Click on a picture to read a bit more about the church (and maybe see more pictures of me!).

Bradley (261)


Burley in Wharfedale (259)


Carleton-in-Craven (249)


Conistone (262)


Embsay (258)


Fountains Abbey (247)


Kettlewell (263)


Long Preston (253)


Oxenhope (250)


Riddlesden (248)


Stainburn (260)


Studley Royal (246)


Thornton-in-Craven (255)


Go back to my St Mary's Churches page


261. Bradley

This St Mary's has a nice red sign, which makes a change. I don't know much about this church 'cos I couldn't get inside it; also it was the end of a long day, I was cold, damp and wanted a serious snooze.

Find them on Facebook.

259. Burley in Wharfedale

They have a lot of interesting services at this St Mary's, including "Tea & Toast Service (Informal all-age worship)". That sounds, potentially, very sticky! And think of all the crumbs, I wonder if they have mouses?

I couldn't go inside to look around, but I found this rather splendid tree to sit in. I like trees.

Visit their website.

249. Carleton-in-Craven

A comfy wall with a pillar to lean against - what more could a bear want? Sadly, the church was shut but the porch had some unglazed windows that I tried to climb through. I may have got a little stuck!

Find them on Facebook.

262. Conistone

It’s very rainy here, so much so that I couldn’t have my photo taken by the sign outside. But there was this handy gate in the porch for me to sit on, so that was good.

I went inside though – it’s a really nice church and they obviously care for it a lot. I had to be a bit careful on the font 'cos there was a big flower arrangement on it. And I found some mouses as well! [The pews, choir stalls and chairs were made by Robert Thompson of Kilburn who’s known as the mouseman. You’ve seen some of his pews before, in Ilmington in Warwickshire, Big Ted.]

Visit their website.

258. Embsay

I sat on a furry wall for my main photo; which was a bit odd, but comfy, a bit like my splendid fur having its own splendid fur [don't be silly, you were sitting on moss on the top of the wall, Big Ted].

I went inside and soon spotted their octagonal font, so I sat on it.

Visit their website.

Shortly after I visited this church I went on a very special journey on the Embsay & Bolton Abbey Steam Railway. I've written about it on my My Travels page.

247. Fountains Abbey

This wasn’t on our list ‘cos it’s all in bits (the abbey, not the list). But when we were at Studley Royal, the ladies said this was a St Mary’s as well, so I just had to visit it although it was a bit of a walk. [And you were carried all the way there and back, Big Ted]

I quite like ruined abbeys ‘cos I get to sit on the walls and pretend I’m a monk, or something, in the olden days. [You’re more likely to be an “or something” instead of a monk, Big Ted]. I sat in a window for my photo and you can see other bits of the abbey behind me.

Read more on the National Trust website.

263. Kettlewell

This was even rainier [I’m not sure that’s a word, Big Ted] than Conistone, so I refused to even think about having my photo taken outside (it was even wet under the lychgate with water streaming down the walls). In fact, I may have had a little strop on the subject. So I had my picture taken in the porch and then I went inside to explore. There was an old font and a nice lady playing the organ.

Visit their website.

253. Long Preston

Isn't this a nice lychgate and very handy for sitting next to the noticeboard. I'm not so sure about the pinecones I had to sit on - ouch!

Visit their website.

250. Oxenhope

This is my 250th St Mary's church - isn't that wonderful! I really could have been photographed better by the sign; anyone would think I'd been squished in between the sign and the wall next to it - I remember being most uncomfortable [oops, sorry, Big Ted].

I made sure to have a good look round in this St Mary’s as it was a special one. It was really nice and had a great big Easter Garden (sadly, I don’t think it would fit in MY St Mary’s). The church has a lovely meeting room at the back and a proper kitchen.

Find them on Facebook.

248. Riddlesden

This is a nice sign, and it doubles up as a noticeboard, which is handy. It had started raining by now, so I had to sit on a bag on the wall so's I didn't get my trousis dirty.

Visit their website.

260. Stainburn

This St Mary’s is looked after by the nice people at the Churches Conservation Trust. It's up a hill and along some very narrow roads (but fortunately the SatNav lady got it right this time - no rude words from the front seats - snigger!).

As noticeboards go, this isn't very exciting so I went inside for a look around. It’s quite plain inside, but very peaceful with a comfy font.

246. Studley Royal

The church is run by the National Trust and English Heritage and doesn't have a proper sign, so I sat on the gate in front of the tower for my photo. This is a really impressive St Mary’s.

The church has got lots of marble and a really great font although the cover had a lot of metal studs which were somewhat uncomfortable on a tender bear’s bottom (or even a bear’s tender bottom!).

I met two very nice lady volunteers who said “Hello” and let me sit and snooze on their chair while Auntie Fiona and Uncle Les had a good look around.

Read more on the English Heritage website.

255. Thornton-in-Craven

Another nice blue sign, and a comfortable wall to sit on. This St Mary's has a "Holy Well" in the grounds with a lovely snaking path down to it. It's in a little house and they have a service there every month, but sadly I missed it.  I had a good look in the well though, just to make sure there was nothing floating in it!

Visit their website.

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