Kirkby Malham, Yorkshire
History, tourist information, and nearby accommodation
HERITAGE HIGHLIGHTS: St Michael's church, with its roots in the Saxon period
St Michael's Church
Kirkby Malham's parish church is a building with a past - a very ancient past. The first church may have been built here near the River Aire as early as the 7th century. Certainly, it existed by the 9th century at the very latest. Curiously, there was no record of St Michael's in the Domesday Book of 1086, but the Book's coverage of Yorkshire is occasionally spotty.
By the late 12th century the advowson (the right to present the living) devolved to West Dereham Abbey, though it seems later to have been granted to Fountains Abbey, for the Fountains arms appear on the embattled tower. The present building is the result of a comprehensive rebuilding in the 15th century. The most obvious historic feature is an 11th-century font decorated with traditional Norman zigzag moulding.
We had the pleasure of staying in a holiday cottage for a week just a few miles away from Malham and visited the village several times. On one occasion I was driving through after visiting the limestone pavement at Malham Cove for a little sunrise photography. I was heading for our cottage when the sun came out and lit the tower of St Michael's church with a golden glow. I just had to stop and visit the church.
I met the vicar coming out of the church, and though he was about to lock up he kindly allowed me a few minutes to poke my nose inside the church, all the while chatting away about the village and the church. He was quite obviously proud of the church and its ancient origins, and of the village in general. Its that sort of friendly encounter that makes exploring the English countryside so enjoyable!
Malham is a quiet place, off the beaten track, which is part of the charm. It makes a great centre for exploring the Dales, especially if you enjoy walking, and is very well-placed for Malham Cove and Gordale Scar.
Most photos are available for licensing, please contact Britain Express image library.
About Kirkby Malham
Address: Kirkby Malham, Yorkshire Dales, Yorkshire, England
Attraction Type: Village
Photo Credit: David Ross and Britain Express
NEARBY HISTORIC ATTRACTIONS
Heritage Rated from 1- 5 (low-exceptional) on historic interest
Malham Cove - 1.9 miles (Countryside)
Janet's Foss - 2.3 miles (Countryside)
Gordale Scar - 2.8 miles (Countryside)
Winskill Stones Nature Reserve - 5.8 miles (Countryside)
Catrigg Force Waterfall - 6.3 miles (Countryside)
Skipton Castle - 7.1 miles (Castle)
Bracewell, St Michael's Church - 7.4 miles (Historic Church)
Gisburn, St Mary's Church - 8.1 miles (Historic Church)
Nearest Holiday Cottages to Kirkby Malham: