The oldest part of St Andrew’s Church is the
Medieval tower which dates from about 1397 with
15th century buttresses added. The remainder of
the church was rebuilt in 1720-22 at a cost of
£2,253. St. Ninian brought Christianity to this area
about 1,500 years ago.
The War Memorial lies on the right of the path
leading to the church entrance. Nearby is the
grave of Mary Noble, a lady who died in 1823 at
the age of 107 and who was spinning yarn until
three months before her death.
The badly damaged flat gravestone under the
weeping ash tree is that of John and Mary
Hutchinson, William Wordsworth in-laws.
The ‘Giant’s Grave’, according to legend, is the
burial place of Owen Caesarius, King of Cumbria
between 920 and 937AD.
Directly opposite the Giant’s Grave is the
1850’s remodelled 1564 Grammar School; it is
now the town library.
The ‘Giant’s Thumb’ nearby is a Norse wheel
cross dating from around 920AD; at one time it
was used as a whipping post.
More info on the Giant’s Grave and Giant’s Thumb Explore the church
and grounds then proceed down St Andrews Place
and Bishop Yards.
The inscription ‘RB1563’ on the gable of the
Tudor House refers to its owner Robert Bartram, a
draper who died 1577. The adjoining section of the
later building immediately to the right was Dame
Birkett’s School; William Wordsworth, his sister
Dorothy and wife-to-be Mary Hutchinson attended
The adjacent restaurant was formerly Penrith’s
first Roman Catholic Chapel. Later it became the
office and works of the ‘Penrith Observer’. The
section beyond once belonged to the Bishop and is
now known as Bishop Yards.