Marrick Priory

Uncovering Remains

Date: 1972
Headline: Boys dig up Priory past
Source: The Northern Echo

Remains of the medieval Marrick Priory, in Swaledale, have been uncovered by three schoolboys on holiday.

The boys, Simon Brown, David Barber and Stephen Smith, all aged 16, from Richmond School, are working as odd-job men at the Priory, now a youth adventure centre, and have been tidying up a corner of the churchyard.

The centre’s warden, the Rev. Jonathan Bailey, asked them to dig down to reveal more of a stone bench set into the wall of the Chancel ruins.

After excavating nearly four feet down, they uncovered stone slabs believed to be the old chancel floor. They have also found part of a stone coffin lid, and a quantity of stained and painted glass. The work has now stopped until archaeological experts can look at their finds.

The Priory, which dates from the twelfth century, was a Benedictine Nunnery and eventually became the Parish Church for Marrick. A smaller church was built on the site, leaving only the tower and the chancel walls of the old building.

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