Marrick Priory

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Marrick Priory

Marrick Priory was a Benedictine nunnery in Richmondshire, North Yorkshire, England, established between 1140-1160 by Roger de Aske.[1] The parish Church of the Virgin Mary and St. Andrew and 400 acres of local land also belonged to the priory, which thrived until the 16th century, in spite of the depredations of marauding Scots.[2]

On 17 November 1540 the prioress, Christabel Cowper, and her 16 nuns were evicted as part of the Dissolution of the Monasteries, the prioress receiving a pension of 100 shillings and the nuns varying amounts down to 20 shillings (£1 sterling). The site was then leased by the crown to Sir John Uvedale (or Woodhall), who went on to purchase it in 1545 for £364. He sold it in 1592 to Sir Timothy Hutton of Marske, who resold it in 1633 to the Blackburns of Blackburn Hall. The church continued to be used as the place of worship for the local people until 1948, after which it was used as a farm building.[2] It is a grade II* listed building.[3]

In 1970 the church was converted, after some years of restoration, into an outdoor education and residential centre for young people, providing outdoor activities such as rock climbing, abseiling, open canoeing, kayaking, caving, ropes course, zip wire, orienteering and team building for several thousand people a year.[4]

To the northeast of the priory the Nuns' Steps or Nuns' Causey (causeway) leads through Steps Wood to the village of Marrick. This flagged stone path is thought to have been associated with the priory, perhaps connecting it to the Richmond road or to its lead-mining interests.[5]


  1. ^ Jennings, B. Yorkshire Monasteries. ISBN 1-85825-105-2. 
  2. ^ a b "Mallick Priory - Outdoor Education and Residential Centre". Retrieved 7 December 2014. 
  3. ^ "Name: MARRICK PRIORY FARMHOUSE List entry Number: 1130821". English Heritage. Retrieved 6 December 2013. 
  4. ^ Marrick Priory Outdoor Education and Residential Centre
  5. ^ "Around Reeth in the Heart of Swaledale" (PDF). The AA. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 

Coordinates: 54°22′32.44″N 1°53′55.90″W / 54.3756778°N 1.8988611°W / 54.3756778; -1.8988611

External links[edit]

Archival material at Leeds University Library