My recent walk up Helvellyn started and finished in the car park next to Wythburn church.
It’s a small, but attractive building with white rendered walls and a green Lakeland slate roof. Originally constructed in 1554 on the site of an earlier chapel, it was rebuilt in 1640, and again in 1740 with some additions in the 19th Century. It’s a Grade II listed building
The church used to serve a small, isolated, rural community but the local population was severely reduced once Thirlmere was turned into a reservoir to provide water for Manchester at the very end of the 19th Century. Despite this it is still in use with services held during the summer months.
After I had finished my walk I went to have a look around the outside of the church and noticed that it was open. So I had to go inside to have a peek inside.
It was surprisingly light inside and clearly well looked after.
The church was well known to the Lakes poets. Hartley Coleridge (the son of Samuel Taylor Coleridge) called the church a ‘humble house of prayer’, while William Wordsworth saw it as a ‘modest house of prayer.’