Follow this Monument Trail using either the QR codes or the printed map available in church. There are 12 monuments to find, plus a bonus!


1. The Parish Office

Once a school, but only for boys! Paid for by their fathers, well-to-do local businessmen: some 23 pupils from about 12 years of age, were taught by one teacher. Can you spot the date 1852 on the building?



2. The Parents of Sir John Barrow

The famous man himself is buried in London, but his parents Roger (died 1792, aged 54) and Mary (died 1813, aged 89) lie here. They lived in their cottage at Dragley Beck, with their faithful servant Betty Williams. She is mentioned in this inscription, but believed to be buried in an unmarked grave nearby.



The New Barrow Stone

As part of the Marvelous Monument Mapping Mission, we recognise the significance of having Sir John Barrow’s parents’ grave in the churchyard. It was badly degraded, so it was decided to install a new slab bearing the original inscription, as per photographs from Barrow Archives provided by Greenlane Archaeology. The original fragments of the cover stone are retained by the church, there is hope of displaying them in the future. The works were paid for by a private donation.



3. Hidden Hams!

This memorial, with its cover slightly ajar was once a repository for contraband! In 1856 four fine bacon hams were stowed away in a sack under the tombstone. Police recovered the stolen property and found they had been missing for ten days!



4. A World Champion Lies Here!

Pole vaulting is first recorded in Ulverston. Tom Ray was a many times world record holder, the first at just 17 years old in September 1879! This headstone names Tom’s parents, but he is also believed to have been buried here in 1904.



5. War Widow

The final resting place of Isabella McCartney, the wife of a hero! The gallant Captain McCartney commanded the vessel ‘Princess Amelia’ at the Battle of Dogger Bank. A Royal Navy ship with 80 guns built in 1745, ‘Princess Amelia’ went into combat with reduced guns and sails. Tragically the Captain was killed in action off Dogger Bank on the 5th August 1781.



6. Bible Benefactor

This is the grave of the family of Roger Sawrey (though he is buried elsewhere). Roger is remembered for his bequest to provide Bibles and books to promote Christianity in Cumbria, especially the Parish of Ulverston, as it was drawn in 1718. This bequest continues to fulfil its purpose 400 hundred years later!



7. Songs of Praise

George Ellerton was father to John Ellerton (1826-1893) the foremost hymn writer and compiler of his day. John influenced almost every major English hymn book for 3 decades. Many of his hymns continue to be sung and loved today.



8. Leading the Way

(view from the path outside the railings) The grave of the remarkable Canon Richard Gwillym, Rural Dean (1837), Deputy Chancellor of Carlisle (1862) and Honorary Canon (1864) During his time here he replaced the old church bells and installed six new ones which are still rung. He founded Church Walk School which is still in use and instigated the major church restoration, culminating in 1866. The unusual position of his grave, right in the east corner, very close to the boundary wall, is because he wanted to be at the front when the time came to lead his parishioners into the Kingdom of God.



9. Oops!

The inscription on this stone includes a spelling mistake! On other stones you may see there is a gap or rectangle cut out of the stone, it means that the stone mason made an error and he chiselled or cut it out so he could replace it with a piece of stone with the correct spelling upon it. This small insert often came loose and fell out some years later and was lost.



10. Leading Lady

At the north-east corner of the church building find the foundation stone laid by Lady Louisa Cavendish on 13th September 1864. This was laid under the plan to simply add a new north aisle estimated at a cost of £2,500 and taking a few months. Instead, the scheme developed into a major renovation taking 2 years and a budget in excess of £10,000, the equivalent of over one million pounds today!



11. Friends Forever

In 1841 two young men, John Ormandy and Samuel Robinson, crossed the bay to Cartmel to invite friends to a get together in Ulverston the following weekend. Returning home, they lost their way on the treacherous sands and were cut off by the rising tide. Sadly, they and their horse drowned. The two friends were buried side by side.



12. Master Mariners

Ulverston Canal opened in 1796 and from that date shipyards sprung up along its banks and where there are ships, there are seamen to sail them! Ulverston launched over two hundred ships from small coasting sloops of some 50 tons upwards to huge armed West Indies traders of almost 400 tons. These ships went all over the world. Among other master mariners buried in the churchyard, James Cannon sailed the UTILITY, launched 1822 from Liverpool to Newfoundland; later he sailed a ship called the LARK and finally in 1840 he commanded the GEORGE of 300 tons. Philip Priest (across the pavement) did not venture as far afield but was master of the WILLIAM of 58 tons, a coaster which sailed regularly from Ulverston to Liverpool, then later he was in charge of the DISPATCH. All the vessels mentioned were built in Ulverston.



Welcome In!

(enter through the first set of church doors to see the archway inside) The interior doorway of the church is of Norman origin, (as are all the doorways in Furness Abbey). Founded in 1111, the doorway with its chevron mouldings, has survived almost unscathed, remaining a silent witness to all who pass through, entering to be welcomed into the family of the church.