Newbrough, Northumberland – St Peter

On the way back I stopped to have a look at St Peter’s church Newbrough – NY867679. Their website is entitled “Newbrough and Warden PCC” – how many people outside the church will know what “PCC” stands for? Police and Crime Commissioner. Nor does it make any mention of when they have services. It does tell us about the history of the churches, so I will use it as I write up what I found.

The church sits beside the Stanegate Roman Road, and a halfpenny piece of Constantine the Great’s reign (306-337) was found in the churchyard in 1929. Perhaps the dedication to St Peter relates to the stone quarries in this area – “on this rock I will build my church.” A Roman building has been found on the north side of the churchyard, it was possible a fortlet (I like the idea of a fortlet) which dates to the C2. It was probably rebuilt in the C9 as a church. In 1113 Augustinian Canons at Hexham Abbey and religious life revived. The original chapel was replaced in 1292, and a resident chaplain was appointed in 1293 with a grant of half an acre of land from the Bishop of Durham.

The area suffered during the Border Wars. In 1681 the churchwarden reported that the church was “in ruins and much decayed.” A new church was built on the site in 1795, it too had decayed by 1863. The old church was pulled down in February 1865 and the new St Peter’s opened a year later, it cost £932-8-3d). It was extended in 1880-83.

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I entered the churchyard through the lychgate, which commemorates the 39 village men who died in the First World War.

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There are some nice table tombs, thought to be the earliest in the churchyard. A good selection of tombs.

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St Peter’s sword stone, in the porch, dates to the C13. The guide suggests they have dated it by looking at the style of the sword. A pretty nondescript font.

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An interesting copy of an old Master on the wall.

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Some nice stained glass – I wonder if the Roman soldiers who marched along the Stanegate looked like this.

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They keep the original altar and reredos, but have a new (and nicely designed) altar table a little nearer the congregation.

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Let is finish our visit with this rather nice mousey door wedge.

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