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Remembering the martyrs

13 November 2008

by Margaret Duggan

THE Augustinian Canons thought they were safe when they were allowed to return to Cartmel Priory (now in Carlisle diocese) after the Pilgrimage of Grace in 1536, but it was a false hope. Henry VIII was still determined to dissolve the monasteries, and, when Thomas Cromwell’s men arrived to seize the church’s property, the monks resisted.

The four monks and ten lay workers were carried off to stand trial for treason in Lancaster, and were sentenced to be hanged, drawn, and quartered. They are now known as the Cartmel martyrs, and a memorial to them has just been dedicated by the Team Vicar, Canon Robert Bailey.

The Young Martyr (above) is a sculpture by Josefina de Vasconcellos, carved shortly before she died, aged 100, in 2005. It bears the names of the 14 martyrs, and has a perpetually burning lamp. It is the fourth work by the sculptor in the Priory.

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