Renwick All SaintsRenwick All Saints Contact: Rev Katharine Butterfield
The Church of All Saints in Renwick, in the parish of All Saints Renwick with Croglin, is a small village church serving the local rural community. Since the closure of the church at Croglin in 2012, that community has included the villages of Renwick and Croglin together with more isolated hamlets such as Scalehouses, Scarrowmanwick, Outhwaite, Busk and Haresceugh.
The Church lies at the northern end of Renwick on the road out to Croglin. It lies well set back from the road within its own substantial graveyard and is accessed by a stone flagged path through a simple gateway and metal arch.
The present Church, constructed of local red sandstone with a slate roof, was built in 1845 to a design of the then incumbent, John Watson. It replaced an earlier one of 1733 and like that earlier one the cost is believed to have been borne entirely by local residents. The present church – possibly the fourth one on the site – is of simple design with a nave and chancel, a bell gable with two bells at the west end and a vestry to the north of the chancel. Under the vestry is a cellar area, formerly used for the old coal boiler and now used as a store. The building is not listed; neither the gravestones nor monuments in the graveyard are of significance though they do provide much useful information on the history of the village and its inhabitants. There is one simple War Memorial for the First World War near the Church Entrance.
Internally, again the church is of simple design with pleasing proportions and decoration. The fittings, pulpit, seating arrangements etc are all thought to date from around the time of construction of the church. Seating is provided throughout by pews. The use of pine predominates in the nave for flooring and pews while oak is used for the pulpit. The curtained enclosure to the rear of the nave is supported by oak posts. In the chancel oak predominates for the choir stalls, altar rail and panelling behind the altar. There are simple stained glass windows at the east end above the altar with plain glass windows elsewhere.
One of the original bells, the tenor is of significance in that it is a medieval “Alphabet” bell. This was replaced in the bell gable by a new one in 1893 and for many years the Alphabet bell was kept in the nave of the church. However, to prevent its theft for scrap metal it was removed to Carlisle Cathedral in 2012 for display and safe keeping.
The church is heated by a hot water system running in large diameter cast iron pipes along either side of the nave about a foot from the floor. Energy is supplied from an oil fired boiler in the vestry.
All Saints significance can therefore best be classified as “Local” in that it is a small church with no special features but which tries to serve the varying needs of the local community.