Pictures of Churches

St. Mary's Church, Wreay

The first church at Wreay was built about 1319, in the reign of Edward the Second. In post Reformation times there was a building that served the purpose of both a chapel and a school house. In 1739, after some improvements this was consecrated by Bishop Fleming.

The church in this photograph was built between 1840 and 1842 by Sarah Losh, a local woman, at her own expense. The church is quite famous, and unique in that it is built in the Italian style called Lombardian. Sarah travelled to Italy to gain ideas, and designed the church herself.

Early Robleys living at Wreay are in the St. Mary's, Carlisle parish register. The first Robley christening recorded at St. Mary's, Wreay was William Robley, christened on 2 April, 1775. John Robley of Woodhouse, was churchwarden for the Wreay Quarter of St. Mary's, Carlisle in 1733. John Robley of Lesmurdie, W. Australia, who contributed some of this information, believes that the earlier Robleys could have been christened at Wreay itself, while recorded in St. Mary's, Carlisle registers.

St. Mary the Virgin, Cumwhitton

William Robley served as curate in this ancient church between 1703 and 1709. Two Robley wills, Thomas Robley (1578) and Margaret Robley (also 1578), suggest, however, that there were Robleys living in the parish in the sixteenth century. This early Robley line seems to have died out. The many Robley graves, in the churchyard, are all of Robleys descended from Joseph Robley and his wife Mary Ann Lowis, who moved to Cumwhitton from Scarrowmanwick in the mid 1880s.

Photograph contributed by Walter Graham Robley.

St. Andrew's Church, Greystoke

The first mention of Greystoke Church comes in 1255, when the Rector, Thomas de Vipont, was consecrated Bishop of Carlisle. The church registers, which date from 1559, record the baptisms, marriages and funerals of several families of sixteenth century Robleys, mostly from the district of Berrier. At the beginning of the seventeenth century, Robleys no longer appear in the parish registers, and John Robley, of Lesmurdie, W. Australia has suggested that this was due to an epidemic of plague. In 1598 there were 182 burials at Greystoke, when the average for the period was 45, and this coincides with an outbreak, in 1597 and 1598, of a very severe form of the Black Death. In the 1951 census, Robleys reappear in Greystoke, but these are a different branch originating it seems in Wetheral (Wath Green?).

St. John the Baptist, Croglin

Hutchinson heads his list of incumbents with "1293, Adam", but the present church dates from 1878. The Robley christenings in the parish register are of Scarrowmanwick Robleys. The earliest was Thomas Robley in 1836. There is 1 marriage at Croglin on the IGI, between William Robley and Joanna (Hannah) Slack. Two stones from the graveyard have been noted, the first that of Thomas Robley and Elizabeth Dixon, and four of their children, the second of their third son Joseph and his wife Jane Craggs.

St. Kentigern's Church, Crosthwaite

St. Kentigern (also known as St. Mungo) is said to have visited Cumberland as a missionary to preach, teach and baptize. When he reached the area which is now called Crosthwaite in A.D. 553, he planted his cross in a clearing in the valley. The people gathered around the cross, and so a church was born. The later building, which dates from 1523, and was extensively restored in 1844, is dedicated to it's founder St. Kentigern.

Set in the wall of the church are 3 stones which are of interest to Robley family history researchers. The first is unreadable as the surface has worn away, but most of the writing on the other 2 stones is legible. The second records the death of Mary Robley, wife of the Rev. Isaac Robley who was curate of St. John's-in-the-Vale from 1732-1772. Isaac himself is buried before the altar of the church of St. John's-in-the-Vale, but his wife was buried at St. Kentigern's with her daughter, Mary Robley (Jackson), her son-in-law Richard Jackson and 3 of her young grandchildren. The third stone records the death of 2 children of Mary's brother, John Gaskarth. Mary was a Gaskarth, from Hilltop Farm before her marriage.

For transcriptions of the stones see "Pictures of Gravestones