Glories of Grasmere – St Oswald’s Church:
St Oswald’s Parish Church is in the pretty village of Grasmere beside the River Rothay.
From a distance, it doesn’t look and awe-inspiring building but arts of the church date back to the 13th century.
Subsequently, for hundreds of years this was the main parish church for the district.
Deceased parishioners from the outlying areas, including Ambleside, Elterwater and the Langdale Valley had to be carried along a series of ‘coffin trails’ or corpse roads’ to be buried in Grasmere.
Importantly, the remains of William, Mary and Dorothy Wordsworth, together with Hartley Coleridge are buried in the graveyard.
Additionally, the tombstones of the Wordsworth’s children are all situated here too.
The graves are hidden away in a quiet corner of the churchyard and protected by low iron railings.
As a consequence, the churchyard has become a mecca for visitors interested in the life and death of the great poet.
It’s disappointing to learn that a priceless prayer book that once belonged to William Wordsworth has been stolen from the church.
The prayer book, dating back to 1835, was removed from a glass cabinet from inside the church.
Another interesting feature of the church is that it serves three parishes and has a separate entrance for each.
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