St Cuthbert’s Church and Exploring the Rural County of Cumbria

St. Cuthbert's Cemetery

On a sunny fall day, I turned the corner out of a small neighborhood in Kentmere, Cumbria, to explore. The Cumbria region of the Lake District is filled with Roman ruins, waterfalls, medieval castles, and more. Walking around in a new place is exciting because you never know what you will find around the next corner. You can chat with locals outside their house about the beautiful weather we have today, and it almost feels like you are apart of the community. If you keep exploring the countryside, you might even come across a gate that leads to a historical landmark: St. Cuthbert’s Church.Wall surrounding St. Cuthbert's

Rural LandscapesStone fence in Cumbria

You can always expect great scenery in the Lake District, and Kentmere is no exception. Sunny days in this rural countryside lead to some beautiful photographs. Especially of the stone farmhouses, fences, and barns that seem to dot the landscape. When taking photos on bright sunny days, be careful of overexposure. You can use the “Sunny 16” rule and set your ISO at 100, the aperture to f/16, and the shutter speed to 1/100 seconds. This will be a good starting point for shooting in bright sunlight, and then you can adjust your settings as you shoot. You could also add a polarizing or neutral density filter to your camera lens, which will allow you to shoot longer in sunlight.Ivy on Stone Fence and Wooden Gate

St. Cuthbert’s ChurchSt. Cuthbert's Church in Cumbria

The medieval church of St. Cuthbert’s is on the National Heritage List of England as a Grade II parish church in Kentmere, Cumbria. Grade II means that buildings are of special interest and warrant every effort to preserve them. There is a sign on the stone wall surrounding the church grounds that has the church date circa 1251. Although the church dates back to the 16th-century with the earliest record of 1692. The church has been restored and renovated several times, first in 1866, then again in the 20th century. I didn’t spend enough time there to go and see the inside of the chapel. But the exterior of the church is photo-worthy. St. Cuthbert's Church chapel

St. Cuthbert’s CemeteryGravestones at St. Cuthbert's Church

The graveyard next to the church is filled with interesting gravestones, including Commonwealth War graves.  Commonwealth War Graves are gravestones that honor the 1.7 million men and women of the Commonwealth forces who died in the First and Second World Wars. Also in the cemetery is an ancient yew tree that has been estimated to date back to the time of William I. I enjoy photographing old gravestones. Some of the artwork and engravings on the tombstones are exquisite. I also like reading the sayings that are engraved on the stones, seeing how old they were and how much they were loved by the ones left behind. Have you ever spent time exploring gravestones in cemeteries?Old gravestones in front of a tree

Summary

Exploring rural landscapes can provide you some great photo opportunities. The scenery and the structures can provide excellent subjects in your photos, along with enjoying the quiet. Sometimes taking a walk in the countryside can be just what you needed and provide you with more than you thought. Have you explored rural towns and discovered medieval historic places like St Cuthbert’s Church?

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Further Reading

If you are coming to England for a visit, check out these posts for further travel inspiration:

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