Longsleddale is a small rural parish located in a valley off the A6 to the north of Kendal. The valley is part of the Lake District National Park and is renowned for its unspoiled picturesque scenery. It is, however, relatively undiscovered by mainstream tourists. The road ends after 6 miles where a stone track leads over the Gatescarth Pass to Haweswater. Another track climbs up the hillside and across the fells to the neighbouring valley of Kentmere. The river Sprint so called for its fast flowing water runs from Longsleddale and joins the river Kent at Burneside.
The parish consists of 34 individual properties and working farms spread along the single track valley road. The community covers a wide age range with the children mainly attending Selside Endowed Church of England School and Queen Katherine School in Kendal.
St. Mary’s Church is situated half way along the valley with the parish hall, which was formerly the school, on the opposite side of the road. The present church was built in 1863 on the site of an earlier one by Lady Mary Howard of Levens Hall. Services are held on the 2nd and 4th Sundays in the month with the committed congregation participating wholeheartedly. The church is often full at times such as Harvest and our special Christmas carols by candle light service.
The church, along with the parish hall, plays an important part in valley life bringing the community together in good times and bad. The doors are open all the time for those who wish to enjoy the peace and tranquility found there. Visitors to Longsleddale who enter the church often express their thoughts by writing many favourable comments in our visitor’s book.
We are pleased that we are able to meet our financial commitments to the Diocese and Team.