St Cuthbert

On the St Cuthbert's Three Church Trail, this is a place of holy simplicity where St Cuthbert's coffin rested 1300 years ago.

About this church

Rooted in its landscape, this remarkable little church is isolated but intimate. Open to the elements, offering shelter on the hill, Corsenside has a strong claim to be an authentic resting place for the coffin of St Cuthbert (c634-687AD) when the monks of Lindisfarne carried it from Holy Island following Viking raids on the east coast.

Simple inside with natural light, St Cuthbert's church is a place to escape pressure, to be quiet in the calm. Inside are intriguing puzzles. Did the chancel arch come from the nearby Roman fort of Habitancum? Is the carved slab opposite the entrance part of a preaching cross or a gravestone or possibly a Celtic representation of the 'Tree of Life'? The churchyard is managed to maintain a range of habitats so that it can be a haven for wildlife.

In the meadow areas look out for wildflowers such as harebells (bluebells of Scotland), English bluebell, bush vetch, meadow vetchling, betony, yarrow, lady’s bedstraw and crosswort.

Graves range from grand sculpture on the south wall to a child's grave beside the path and Commonwealth war graves in the northwest corner of the churchyard. During the time of the Border Reivers (probably in 17th century), the medieval wooden village at Corsenside was destroyed, leaving St Cuthbert's church and priest's house alone on the hill.

This is a place of pilgrimage and informal retreat.

Key Features

  • Captivating architecture
  • Enchanting atmosphere
  • Fascinating churchyard
  • Wildlife haven
  • Social heritage stories

Visitors information

  • Steps to enter the church or churchyard
  • Car park at church
  • Dog friendly
  • Walkers & cyclists welcome

Other nearby churches

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A 14th century church with Roman tombstone, medieval grave covers, exquisite windows, historic churchyard, 18th century carved headstones and two medieval stone coffins.

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St Cuthbert

With its unique stone roof this is a straightforward and honest medieval church in which you can be yourself.

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A church has stood here since the 7th century, the current church was consecrated in 1090.

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