St Michael’s, Burgh-by-Sands has a rota of trained guides to show groups of pre-booked visitors round the church - any number from two upwards. Groups of over twenty people will be divided between more than one guide. A tour can last from twenty to forty five minutes, depending on what the group requires and will cover the history of the church building, sited on the Roman Fort of Aballava; the lying in State in the Church of King Edward I (known as Longshanks); Border warfare and the Border reivers and the building of the defensive tower for the sheltering of the population in those violent times. There is an excellent series of historical information panels in the tower, which will be explained in detail to visitors and a time-line along the Church path describing significant events over the centuries relating to the site.
Tea/coffee/squash and biscuits can be provided. There is full disabled access to the ground floor of the church, a WC and baby changing facilities. There are two cycle racks in the churchyard. The Church has a PA system and loop system for the hard of hearing, which should enable all visitors to hear clearly.
Here are a few comments by group visitors – “Fascinating history, very engagingly presented”; “The exhibition in the tower is great”; “Very successful visit”; “Very informative guide”.
The Three Solway Churches warmly welcome requests for Group Visits.
St Mary’s, Beaumont and St Michael’s, Bowness-on-Solway are very pleased to welcome pre-booked visits and are able to provide a steward to welcome groups and light refreshments as above. An excellent series of historical information panels at Beaumont tell the story of the site and the church from prehistoric times to the 21st century. Bowness Church bells have a fascinating history and story. For those particularly interested in textiles there is a fine Millennium Banner, and very good hand-worked kneelers. Special features include the stained glass, with an unusual number of 20th century windows depicting life in the area and a hearse house in the churchyard. There is a WC at Bowness-on-Solway Parish Hall, which is very near to the church.For further information or to book a visit please see contact information or download a booking form.