Church of Christ the Consoler, Skelton-cum-Newby, North Yorkshire

Address: Newby Hall, Skelton-cum-Newby, Ripon, North Yorkshire, HG4 5AE
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A church built with unpaid ransom money

With its colourful and vibrant interior, this Victorian church seems the very celebration of life, yet it stands as a testament to tragedy.

It is a memorial to Frederick Vyner who, age 23, was captured and murdered by brigands in Greece in 1870. His mother used the money collected for his ransom to commission British architect William Burges –- celebrated for decorating Westminster Palace and rebuilding Cardiff Castle -– to design this church (built 1871-76) in the grounds of her home at Newby Hall.

Standing inside the gates of the park, and surrounded by huge beech trees, the outside is impressive, with its lofty spire, pinnacles and fine rose window. The design is based on Medieval French church architecture, but with Burges’'s unique interpretation.

A little dog keeps the gargoyles company -– a sweetly domestic touch in this magnificent monument to a lost son. Every detail here repays attention. Burges employed the best craftsmen of the day to work here, and everywhere you look there are examples of their skill.

The interior is wonderfully rich and colourful - pattern and colour are everywhere, with stained glass, fine marble and gilded mosaics filling the interior. Exquisite carvings on the corbels and on the organ case bring stone and wood to life, while in the rose window, Christ the Consoler presides.

Everything is on a magnificent scale; the effect is almost overwhelming. And yet, for all its splendour, you cannot forget the tragic circumstances out of which this church was built.

The best time to visit is on your way in to Newby Hall.

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How to find us

To locate this church on a map, click on the 'View on map' link that appears below the address information at the top of the page.

Road directions

4 miles south east of Ripon, off B6265; turn off A1 at Boroughbridge and follow B6265 to Ripon; turn left following brown signs to Newby Hall; go through main gateway, follow road towards the Hall. Church on right.

Public transport information

Nearest railway station: Knaresborough (6.5 miles). Bus route numbers 142/143.

OS Reference No.

SE 360 679

What’s on & news

News

16/07/14 Wendy Leaney impressed the judges with her skillfully sculpted creation made out of homemade lime and elderflower cordial

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Last year, we welcomed over two million visitors to our churches. If each person donated just £2, this would enable us to keep our churches open, safe and watertight for you and future generations to enjoy.

Close up of a mosaic at St Peter, Northampton

Text code 'OCCT05' to 70070 to donate now (free from all networks).

Or use the button below to donate online.

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Image gallery

Click on images to view larger

Images from Flickr

The CCT is grateful to the Flickr group, Friends of the Churches Conservation Trust, for the images shown here. CCT is not responsible for the quality or content of images taken from Flickr.


Donate by text

Last year, we welcomed over two million visitors to our churches. If each person donated just £2, this would enable us to keep our churches open, safe and watertight for you and future generations to enjoy.

Close up of a mosaic at St Peter, Northampton

Text code 'OCCT05' to 70070 to donate now (free from all networks).

Or use the button below to donate online.

Donate online

Useful information

Why not make your visit more enjoyable and informed by finding out more about this church and the CCT before you visit?

You can download a range of publications below including the relevant county guide, and any walkround guides we have for this church.

 

 

 

PDF iconYorkshire County Guide (PDF, 4.9mb)

This free of charge short guide contains details of all the churches CCT cares for in North, South and West Yorkshire. Printed copies of the county guides are also available at the church.

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Donate by text

Last year, we welcomed over two million visitors to our churches. If each person donated just £2, this would enable us to keep our churches open, safe and watertight for you and future generations to enjoy.

Close up of a mosaic at St Peter, Northampton

Text code 'OCCT05' to 70070 to donate now (free from all networks).

Or use the button below to donate online.

Donate online

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Donate by text

Last year, we welcomed over two million visitors to our churches. If each person donated just £2, this would enable us to keep our churches open, safe and watertight for you and future generations to enjoy.

Close up of a mosaic at St Peter, Northampton

Text code 'OCCT05' to 70070 to donate now (free from all networks).

Or use the button below to donate online.

Donate online

Donate by text

Last year, we welcomed over two million visitors to our churches. If each person donated just £2, this would enable us to keep our churches open, safe and watertight for you and future generations to enjoy.

Close up of a mosaic at St Peter, Northampton

Text code 'OCCT05' to 70070 to donate now (free from all networks).

Or use the button below to donate online.

Donate online

Church of Christ the Consoler, Skelton-cum-Newby, North Yorkshire

Keyholder

If the access information for this church is listed as 'Keyholder nearby', this means that the key is kept by one of our invaluable volunteer 'keyholders', who usually live just a short walk from the church and can give visitors the key; sometimes this is a nearby hotel, pub, library, art gallery or other venue. You will find instructions explaining how to get the key when you arrive at the church.

Disabled access

There is one step into the porch, then one more into the church.

Facilities

Due to the historic nature of our buildings, only a very small number of them have heating or running water meaning that they can be cold, and very rarely have toilet facilities. The lighting is usually operated via a 'push button' timer or a motion sensor. We do apologise for any inconvenience the lack of facilities may cause.