- PENNY ELLIS -
Aysgarth Parish Church
For many centuries, religious devotion was a very important part of life in Wensleydale and Bishopdale. Although Thoralby had a chantry chapel until 1548, Aysgarth parish church would have been where Thoralby folk prayed on Sundays, but the religious monopoly of the Anglican Church was broken in the mid-17th century by the proliferation of nonconformist sects, of whom the Quakers were the most important locally. It is not known whether they had a meeting house in Bishopdale or met in private houses, but the latter is more likely. At one time, Ribba Hall, Newhouse Gill and Myers Garth were all occupied by Quaker families and there was a small Quaker burial ground nearby. John Wesley is known to have preached in Wensleydale in the 1740s and in 1774, and it is likely that folk from Bishopdale went to hear him. The earliest definite evidence of Methodism in Bishopdale comes from 1808, when a list of the members of Middleham Circuit included nine people in Thoralby led by Nathaniel Scott.
T. Bulmer & Co., 1890 - "This is an extensive parish, surpassing in magnitude any other in the North Riding. It stretches from the borders of Sedbergh and Westmorland eastward, to the vicinity of Redmire and West Witton, a distance of 18 miles occupying the upper part of the beautiful valley of Wensleydale. Its average breadth is about six miles, and its total area 81,012 acres, an extent considerably more than the half of the whole county of Rutland. These were the limits of the ancient parish of Aysgarth, which comprised the township of Aysgarth, High and Low Abbotside, Askrigg, Bainbridge, Bishopdale, Burton-cum-Walden, Carperby-cum-Thoresby, Hawes, Newbiggin, Thoraldby, and Thornton Rust, which still form the civil parish; but for ecclesiastical purposes the district has been sub-divided, and the jurisdiction of the ancient mother church extends only over the townships of Aysgarth, Bishopdale, Burton-cum-Walden, Carperby, Newbiggin, Thoraldby and Thornton Rust."
Aysgarth Parish Registers
The Church of St. Andrew, in the parish of Aysgarth, is the parish church for Thoralby, Bishopdale and Newbiggin. The following are transcripits of baptisms, marriages and deaths and burials in the church. Also transcripts of Monumental Inscrpitions in the Churchyard, up to June 1992.
[This section is under construction]
Baptisms Marriages Deaths and burials Monumetal Inscriptions