We are two places of worship, located in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales.
Leyburn is a market town at the centre of Lower Wensleydale and is a hub for social, retail and commercial life. The focus of the town’s commercial life is the agriculture of the Dale and there is a busy cattle and sheep mart which has a chaplaincy provided by local clergy and laity.
Built in 1868, St Matthew’s remained as a daughter church to the parish of Wensley until 1956. It is the only church built by the architect Christopher George Wray and is located at the east end of the market place. The church celebrated its 150th anniversary in 2018. For more on the history of St Matthew’s, please visit its Wikipedia page.
In the 1960s the church was heavily modified internally, and in the last few years the vicar and PCC decided that it needed to refocus so that the building could be of more use within the community and a programme of re-ordering was initiated.
The church is light and airy and many visitors comment on its peaceful atmosphere and its simple beauty. A small Prayer Chapel offers opportunity for private prayer and you may light a candle or leave a request on the prayer board for the prayers of the parishioners. Information on church and town is displayed and the building is usually open every day from Easter to the end of September.
Our plans to make the church building far more accessible are now well under way. In 2017 we built a car park, and created a level access for the less able-bodied. In 2018 we completed the serving kitchen and installation of an accessible toilet, and Wi-fi facilities are now available. As good stewards of what God has given we aim to ensure that St Matthew’s is a resource that can be used everyday. Following on from a series of public consultation meetings, our architect has prepared detailed plans to extend and re-develop our building to continue to serve the community.
Bellerby is a small rural village, less than two miles from Leyburn, with a very strong sense of community spirit. It has lost its primary school and post office/shop over the years but retains a pub and a village hall, which the church is able to use in lieu of a church hall. To find out more about Bellerby, please visit the village’s website.
The church of St. John the Evangelist was consecrated on 24th March, 1874. It is thought that this is the third building on this site. The previous ones, the first of which was built pre 1801, was described as ‘nothing short of an office’.
During 2005, after much fundraising in the Parish, the church was re-roofed and decorated inside. A carpet was fitted throughout in 2006.
St. John’s lies at the centre of the Bellerby community and is much loved and looked after in every possible way. To find us, use postcode DL8 5QG or click on Map
In Bellerby, we hold a range of fun and spiritual activities, including the Beating of the Bounds, the Christmas Sing-a-Long, a Wine & Cheese Evening, and annual themed meal evenings. Bellerby has a great village community and we are proud to be part of it.