Sunday 31 January 2016

Sunday Snap – The Island Priory

We were looking into the sunset across the River Mersey for last week's Sunday Snap. I asked which Wirral town the view was of and the answer was


Catching the right ferry with the correct answer was Sam.

For this week we're off to the opposite side of the country. Access to this historic site is limited due to the causeway that connects this small community to the rest of Northumberland. At high tide the access road is covered thus turning the surrounding area into an island. In the 7th century an Irish monk named Aidan was summoned by the Northumbrian king Oswald to build a monastic community.

What really sealed the priory's eternal fame was the arrival of Cuthbert as prior. He spent many years living as a hermit on some of the outer islands but was ordered back to become bishop. When he died in 687 Cuthbert was buried in a stone coffin. 11 years later the monks decided to open up his coffin and found his body perfectly intact – a sign that Cuthbert was indeed pure and destined for sainthood. A shrine was established and soon miracles were being reported connected to it. Before long it the pilgrims started to arrive and with them the wealth of the monastery. After the Vikings raided the area in 793 the monks decided to move Cuthbert's body away from the island. This started a period of intense warfare as the borders lands were disputed between England and Scotland.

As with most other monastic buildings it was ordered to be closed in the 16th century on the orders of Henry VIII. Although for some time it remained intact for defence reasons over the years the empty priory fell into ruins. The castle through the window was built using stone from the priory. Its charm and religious history though kept the tourists coming over the years and it is now is open to the public through English Heritage. This week's question is

Where is this priory located?

We were joined lasted week by Susan's birthday bunch. Kelly caught the sun before it disappeared for the day. Over in Staffordshire Sam found a worried looking lion in the snow. In New Zealand Betty has been exploring the caves and rocks along Wai-iti beach. Hopping over to Australia Snoskred has been continuing her walk along the beach. Finally, running free in the wood was Kara's own little stick girl.

If you want to join in with this week's Sunday Snap then add your link to the linky below. Any theme is allowed. It doesn't have to be published today as you have until 23.55 on Friday 5th February 2016 to join in. Grab my badge below for your blog post. Just make sure it is your photo and you hold the copyright for it.
Sunday Snap

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I'll share my favourites with you next week and remember I do like a bit of a tale to go with a photo but it's not a necessity!


  1. I'm back ! Haven't had anything to link up for a few weeks but it was carnival for the kids yesterday (and the grown-ups today) :) This is Lindisfarne, I believe ?

  2. I have never been to Lindisfarne but would love to. Looks like a beautiful place, I love visiting history x

  3. Ooooh this is not too far from me ;-)

    It's Lindisfarne and we're planning to visit ourselves when the weather gets a little nicer as we've got English Heritage passes x

  4. Lindisfarne, I'm off there in May, can't wait. Part of my pilgrim / early Christianity/Saints obsession. I've been over the Holy Island many years ago when I was in my early 20's and cared little for history so really excited about visiting again. King Oswald is an interesting character, been reading about his grim death in Oswestry, Shropshire. Great picture.

  5. It is known as Lindisfarne and the Holy Island. Seen it but never been across.

  6. We have been here, it is Lindisfarne. Great place

  7. I have heard this story but have no idea where it is

  8. I think I've been here, but I can't place it. Maybe Holy land. Thank you for the great history lesson and fascinating story. xx

  9. You take us across the UK with your Sunday Snap feature! I wonder what will come next?!

  10. We have never been but I have enjoyed reading your post and learning more of the history x

  11. I'd like to go and visit as I love old monasteries but I've never been as far up north as Northumberland! whoops Mich x

  12. I have no idea where this is, but I'm guessing it's called Lindisfarne (because most of the other commenters say so) :-)

  13. I haven't been here but would love to visit, especially with all the history!


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