Morpeth Church of St Mary

Has been described as a Questionable Fortified Ecclesiastical site

There are major building remains

NameMorpeth Church of St Mary
Alternative Names
Historic CountryNorthumberland
Modern AuthorityNorthumberland
1974 AuthorityNorthumberland
Civil ParishMorpeth

Parish church. Largely C14. Squared stone with Lakeland slate and lead roofs. West tower, nave with aisles and south porch, chancel and vestry.

2-storey tower with angle buttresses and 2-light bell openings; low, lead C18 concave spire. 5-bay nave with C19 porch; windows with cusped Y-tracery; south aisle east window is 3-light with reticulated tracery. Nave and aisles have low-pitched roofs behind parapets.

3-bay chancel has original priest's door with decorative hinges and knocker. 2-light windows with Decorated tracery, divided by buttresses. Large C18 incised sundial. Large 5-light east window with reticulated tracery; 2 cusped niches in buttress on south side. High steeply-pitched roof.

On north side an original 2-storey vestry with 2 gargoyles. North aisle partly rebuilt in C19.

Interior: Original south door with iron knocker. Original door also into vestry. Arcades with double-chamfered arches and octagonal piers. South arcade responds have foliage capitals. Double-chamfered tower arch dying into imposts and double-chamfered chancel arch on octagonal responds. Original nave roof with arched braces and cusped spandrels between purlins and principal rafters. Old timbers in aisle roofs also. In south aisle a C14 tomb recess. Squint into chancel. C14 glass in south aisle east window. East window has C14 "Tree of Jesse" glass, restored 1851 by Wailes. Elaborate sedilia and piscina with crocketed ogee heads and figures on the dividing columns. C14 head stops to all chancel windows. Original door to aumbry on chancel north wall. Chancel has C19 roof with cusped arched braces on angel corbels. Good late C19 screens and pulpit. Cartouche to Robert Fenwick, 1717, in south aisle. (Listed Building Report)

Gatehouse Comments

Brooke writes "Defensive measures abound in this building, and that is perhaps not surprising given its location." which is well away from town centre, south of the river and castle. However what these 'defensive measure' actual are is not apparent to Gatehouse.

- Philip Davis

Not scheduled

This is a Grade 1 listed building protected by law

Historic England Scheduled Monument Number
Historic England Listed Building number(s)
Images Of England
Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceNZ197850
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  • Brooke, C.J., 2000, Safe Sanctuaries (Edinburgh; John Donald) p. 165-7
  • Pevsner, N., 1957, Buildings of England: Northumberland (London, Penguin) p. 213-4
  • Hodgson, J., 1832, A History of Northumberland Part 2 Vol. 2 (Newcastle-upon-Tyne; John Hodgson) p. 390-94 online copy
  • Hodgson, J., 1832, A History of Morpeth (London) p. 85


  • Northumberland County Council, 2009, 'Morpeth' Northumberland Extensive Urban Survey doi:10.5284/1000177 [download copy >]