Church of Low Furness
One Church five locations
The Church of St. Mary and St. Michael, Urswick.
The Early Church
In 1123 Stephen de Blois (later King Stephen of England 1135-
Whichever of these two dates we take, both would indicate that Urswick was the mother church of the Furness area, due to the inscription from the Tunwinni Cross indicating the existence of a literate Christian community here. There is also the strong suggestion that Urswick was the early centre of Celtic Christianity in Furness, which may be further supported by a recent theory proposed by the British Geological Survey, that in the 8th century and before the sea came into Urswick Tarn.
The Dedication of the Church
The original charter, giving land to the monks who built Furness Abbey, refers to an already established Church of St. Mary in Urswick. Later reference was made to St. Mary in the Fields. Now the Church is known as St. Mary and St. Michael’s, though no one seems to know just when the name of St. Michael was added. However, in his honour Rushbearing takes place each year on the Sunday nearest to St. Michael’s Day (29th September).
Points of Interest
1 Church Road
More details of Urswick church can be found here