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13. St Mary's Church, Whitby

 

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St Mary's Church high up on the cliff edge above Whitby harbour. It is overlooking the town and near the ancient abbey (on the right). The church is mostly Norman and Early English with Georgian additions and alterations, so it is quite a mix of architectural history.

 

St Mary's Church high up on the cliff edge above Whitby harbour. It is overlooking the town and near the ancient abbey. The church is mostly Norman and Early English with Georgian additions and alterations.

 

 

The tower of St Mary's Church, Whitby. The main entrance (centre) is paralleled by the Norman south door to its right.

The tower of St Mary's Church, Whitby. The main entrance (centre) is paralleled by the Norman south door to its right (shown below).

The Norman south door.

The Norman south door.

 

The modern Caedmon Memorial 'Anglo-Saxon' cross by St Mary's Church, beyond is West Cliff and Runswick Bay.

 

Some of the details on the 'modern' Anglo-Saxon cross near the entrance at the top of the 199 steps.

Caedmon and Hild (St Hilda)

 

The poet and English sacred song composer CAEDMON who died in AD 680, carved on the 'Celtic Cross' at the top of the 199 steps leading up to St Mary's Church, Whitby

 

Perhaps a baby's Saxon coffin, with odd decorated carved stones from earlier buildings.

Perhaps a baby's Saxon coffin, with odd decorated carved stones from earlier buildings.

 

The interior was remodelled in the 18th century and the large nave houses the interior columns supporting the galleries above the box pews. In the middle of the picture is the original curved Norman chancel arch.

The interior was remodelled in the 18th century and the large nave houses the interior columns supporting the galleries above the box pews. In the middle of the picture is the original curved Norman chancel arch.

 

Looking through the chancel arch to the alter. Parts of the chancel date back to early medieval times.

Looking through the chancel arch to the alter. Parts of the chancel date back to early medieval times.

 

The tall panelled three-decker pulpit of 1778.

The tall panelled three-decker pulpit of 1778.

 

The chest against the north wall is over 300 years old and has three locks. One for the rector and two for the church wardens. In 1743 it contained the Church Plate and Parish records when it was stolen and thrown over the cliff by thieves. The chest was recovered, but empty!

 

A good old stove to heat the church in winter.

A good old stove to heat the church in winter.

 

One grave stone near the south-west corner of the church is carved on both sides (neither is very readable!).

 

The graveyard of St Mary's Church is a favourite 'haunt' of the characters playing out Whitby's Goth Weekend.

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