Building » Lealholm – Our Lady and the Sacred Heart

Lealholm – Our Lady and the Sacred Heart

Lealholm, Whitby, North Yorkshire

A small stone-built Gothic church of modest architectural pretension. Pevsner is perhaps a little too harsh in commenting ‘not a job to do any architect credit’. 

The handful of Catholics in Lealholm eventually raised sufficient funds to build a church, and Bishop Shine laid the foundation stone in September 1931. The architect was W. R. Robinson of Glaisdale (The Tablet, 25 July 1931), and the church opened in 1932. Lealholm was served from Egton Bridge until 1948, when it became a parish in its own right.


The church is faced in coursed rock-faced stone under a Welsh slate roof with a cross on the west gable. The nave has four tall lancet windows to the north and three to the south and a pair of lancet windows to the west, over a small rectangular porch with crenellated parapet, accessed by a flight of steps to the south. The sacristy is in a gabled projection to the south. The sanctuary is only demarcated externally by a stepping in. It too has plain lancet windows, two to the east and single lancets north and south. The ground rises steeply from north to south.

The interior is simple and largely unadorned. Pointed sanctuary arch with just a slight chamfer and no capitals. Shallow niches to either side with statues supported on projecting shelfs. Simple king post roof in the nave. Plain open backed pews. Pine altar and ambo, the latter with a slightly Gothic treatment. Stained glass figures set in plain coloured backgrounds to the two sanctuary east lancets. Unusual carved relief Stations of the Cross, in wood and recessed into the walls.

Amended by AHP 15.01.2019

Heritage Details

Architect: W. R. Robinson

Original Date: 1931

Conservation Area: Yes

Listed Grade: Not Listed