Bridlington – Bridlington Priory Church
About this Churchyard
Bridlington Priory, founded in 1113 as an Augustinian monastery, is now an Anglican parish church and has a large enclosed churchyard. This includes old graves and headstones and other areas for new burials. As part of the Yorkshire Wildlife Living Churchyard Project, about 12 years ago other areas were set aside for wildflower meadow, trees and bushes, log pile and rough grass. The wildflower area has cowslips in the spring and then ox-eye daisy, red clover, knapweed, yellow rattle, red campion and others as the year progresses. This is all cut down and raked away in autumn.
There are also bird and bat boxes and an owl box. Five native deciduous saplings have been planted as part of the late Queen’s Commonwealth canopy. Two benches provide for rest and quiet reflection and near to the wildflowers is a prayer labyrinth full of bees and lavender in summer.
Another interesting feature in the churchyard is the monument to the Great Gale of Bridlington Bay of 1871. Many lives were sadly lost including those of heroic lifeboat men. An interpretation board gives more details of the tragedy and this area is full of snowdrops in February. The artwork on these boards is by local artist and sculptor Stephen Carvill whose work can also be seen in church in his stone carving of St John of Bridlington and in the churchyard with his Lamb of God tree carving, situated by the entrance gate, and St John Stone between the hay meadow and the wooded area. Stephen’s stunning and highly acclaimed bronze, ‘Gansey Girl’, looks out to sea from the harbour reflecting Bridlington’s fishing heritage.
In 2022 Bridlington Priory Churchyard was awarded Highly Commended in a CPRE Best Churchyard competition.
- Wildflower areas
- Good accessibility
- Peaceful space for quiet reflection
- Wildlife Haven
- Memorials with famous or infamous connections
- Stones with stories
- Fascinating monuments
Bridlington Priory Church
The churchyard is open daily from 8.30am to 6.30 pm from March to September and 8.30am to dusk for the rest of the year. The church is open Monday-Friday 11am to 3pm and Saturday 10am to 12 noon. Sunday church services are at 8am, 10.30am and 6.30 pm
Access is by a tarmac path along the south side of church and wide stone steps which lead up to the burial ground. Level access through the locked East Gate can be arranged with prior notice. Grass paths are cut through the wildlife areas.
There are toilets, including access for wheelchair users, in the Priory Church Rooms available when church is open. Public toilets are 5 minutes walk away.
Seating and Interpretation
Two sturdy wooden seats with back and arm rests are in the churchyard.
There are interpretation boards.
Parking & Transport
Car parking on Church Green is free and unlimited
Bridlington Railway Station is about one mile from the Priory which is in the Old Town area.
There is a regular bus service to the Old Town from the town centre.
There is a coffee machine in church and several cafes and pubs in the High Street which is 5 minutes’ walk away.