Building » Maryport – Our Lady and St Patrick

Maryport – Our Lady and St Patrick

Crosby Street, Maryport

A plain Gothic mission church of the 1840s built by the Benedictines. The interior has been modernised and retains little of its original character.

The mission at Maryport was established by the Ampleforth Benedictines in 1838. The present church, originally known as St Patrick’s Chapel, was founded in 1844 by the Rt Revd Dr Riddell, coadjutor bishop of the district, and was dedicated on 14 May 1846 by Rt Revd Dr Briggs, Bishop of the Yorkshire District. The church was handed over to the Diocese of Lancaster in 1968.


This is a modestly-sized church; a description from a visitation of 1868 on the file at the diocesan offices gives the dimensions: Length 56 ft. width 25 ft, height 30 ft. Benched throughout, seatings 220.

Simple exterior of red St Bees sandstone with Welsh slate roof. Nave and single aisle on east side with small lower gabled projection at north end.  The entrance is at the north end of  the aisle in a two-storey section which  looks unfinished and may have been intended as the base of a tower or spire. The main south gable has stepped triple lancets and a simple bellcote at the apex. The aisle has stepped triple lancet windows, the north wall has four single lancets. The north end of the church is enclosed by other buildings; the north gables of both nave and the lower projection are rendered and the projection has a circular gable window with timber or iron cusping.

Interior:  Mannix & Whellan’s Directory of Cumbria 1847 apparently says that the church had a Gothic altar and that the chancel and aisle were laid with ornamental tiles. The altar is at the south end of the church under the stepped triple lancet window. The altar and the gradine both appear to be modern. The nave has a steep boarded rafter roof with scissor braces to the principal rafters. The aisle has a similar boarded roof. Nave arcade of four pointed moulded arches on cylindrical stone columns with moulded capitals. The walls are plain plastered, the windows have plain reveals.   The nave arcade has been recently painted. The tower arch at the north end has been infilled with modern glazing. The floor is covered with lino tiles. The wall at the south end of the aisle is filled with a nineteenth century mosaic showing Our Lady, which could be part of the original decoration. Of the furniture, some timber and iron benches which could be mid-nineteenth century century, but most of the seating is modern; timber octagonal font, post-war stained glass in aisle windows and south lancets.

It is possible that the north projection was originally intended as an organ chamber. It now appears to contain an upper room.

After the church was handed over to the diocese in 1968 a new sanctuary and sacristy were created, and a baptistry in the porch (plans by E. Livesey, architect).

Entry amended by AHP 19.12.2020

Heritage Details

Architect: Not established

Original Date: 1846

Conservation Area: Yes

Listed Grade: Not Listed