Marske by Richmond, North Yorkshire, England



 



Tree: Ward Tree
Notes: The Church is dedicated to St Edmund, who was a Saxon King and Saint put to death by the Danes in AD 870. It is known that the bones of St Cuthbert rested in Marske for a time during the period when the monks were protecting them from the Danes who had sacked the abbey at Lindisfarne in AD 793. The saint's bones were later put to rest at Chester-le-Street and finally in Durham Cathedral.

This seems to point to an earlier church on the site of the present one founded in AD 1090. The north and south doors and the hexagonal pillars are from the Norman building. In a recess in the north aisle is a pointed stone tracery arch, carved from one block of stone, which may be the East window from this time. There are also theories that either the square stone base of the font or the square stone base of the 1914-1918 War Memorial is the base of a Norman or earlier cross.

Little except the names of the clergy is known until Matthew Hutton, Archbishop of York, bought the Marske estate for his son Timothy in 1597. The Church registers start from this date. From this time the history of the Church and village is closely linked with the Hutton family and there is no record of them building a chapel in the Hall. The family produced two Archbishops, two High Sheriffs of Yorkshire and a very famous stallion called Marske. This was the sire of Eclipse from whom most British racehorses are descended including Mill Reef, Nijinsky and Northern Dancer.

In 1634 following a reprimand from the Bishop-of Chester, Matthew Hutton the ¬squire paid for repairs to the chancel, paving the floor (which been mud-strewn with rushes) and "some seating". His brother Timothy gave the font. In 1655 Matthew gave the silver chalice and paten. There is a magnificent memorial to him and his wife, also depicting their twelve children, in Richmond Parish Church. He was followed in 1666 by his grandson, John Hutton, who put in the two windows in the south aisle and the sundial. The second, third and fourth John Huttons are buried under the Church floor and there is a memorial to the fourth John Hutton on the north wall of the sanctuary.

It seems that it was not until the time of the fourth John Hutton that anything more was done to the Church. Again there was a diocesan reprimand in 1822, and in 1823 John Hutton rebuilt the chancel and put in the box pews on top of the graves of his father and grandfather. He also added the porch and the crenellation around the roof.
In 1896 the present East window was given in memory of Colonel John Cameron who rented the Hall from the Huttons at this period. The Georgian silver candlesticks were given in 1966 in memory of Mrs D'Arcy Sykes who was a daughter of Timothy Hutton. These candlesticks are now deposited in Ripon Cathedral.

The village of Marske in Norman times was a community of foresters and huntsmen. Subsequently it developed into coal and lead mining, while farming became viable much later. Until the 18th century all the cottages were single storey and thatched with heather. The thatched roofs were very steep, sometimes almost touching the ground. The housing was improved in the 18th century and stone slates replaced the ling thatch. Because the stone slate roofs could be made much less steep, it -was possible to raise the walls and add another storey to the cottages. Many gable ends show evidence of this.

The Rectory was built in 1755 by the ten Rector Richard Horne at a cost of £185! It also housed a preparatory school for Richmond Grammar School. The magnificent stables near the Hall are also of this period.

The obelisk at the high point od Deer Park, south of the village, marks the burial place of Matthew Hutton who died in 1813. He requested that he be buried in his favourite place overlooking all the Hutton estate.

The ornamental gardens were made in 1836 when the new Downholme Bridge was built and gave access to the turnpike road down Swaledale. The Huttons gave land to make a road to connect the village with this bridge and this cut through their drive and left the lime avenue isolated. They pulled down the old manorial corn mill by Marske Bridge and made the splendid gardens at the other side of the road.

The Huttons built Marske Lodge at the beginning of the 20th century and at about the same time the family ceased living in Marske. When John Timothy D’Arcy Hutton died the inheritance passed to a nephew who sold the whole estate in 1960 without even seeing it.

Today the village has no resident squire, parson, doctor or publican but village life remains very strong.

(From a leaflet someone online picked up in St. Edmund's Church)

Latitude: 54.4034650, Longitude: -1.7326180

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