Church Explorers – St Mary’s Church, Lead

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Church Explorers – St Mary’s Church, Lead
July 17, 2017
August 31, 2017
St Mary’s Church
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Lead, Tadcaster, LS24 9QN, United Kingdom
Church Explorers
June 9, 2017
church explorers event

Since being rescued by a group of walkers in 1931, St Mary’s has been known as the Ramblers’ Church. The repairs made then are recorded on the back of the church door.

The church stands alone in the middle of a field filled with the bumps and furrows of earthworks that indicate the site of a medieval manor house, for which St Mary’s was probably originally the chapel. Nearby is Towton, the site of the bloodiest battle in English history which brought the Wars of the Roses to an end in 1461. Ten thousand men are said to have been killed and Cock Beck, the little stream which you cross to get to St Mary’s, is said to have run red with blood. You can also find monuments to crusading knights in this tiny 14th-century church.

It was probably built by the Tyas family, whose massive grave slabs are set into the floor. Carved with heraldic symbols and inscriptions, and dating from the 13th century, they are an important and interesting collection.

This small, simple and peaceful church is managed by the Churches Conservation Trust and will be open to visitors daily this summer.

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