While many people have heard of the Knights Templar, most may not know of another similiar order – the Knights Hospitallers. This fighting religious order was also associated with running hospitals for pilgrims in the ‘Holy Land’ during the middle ages. In Lancashire, they came to own the small church at Stydd, together with its medieval hospital and surrounding estate.
The church of St Saviour, Stydd, was built during Norman times. Medieval records refer to “the hospital of St Saviour, under the Long Ridge and the Master and brethren also serving God”. By 1265 the buildings and surrounding estate land was acquired by the Knights Hospitallers of the Order of St John of Jerusalem.
To get to this church, you drive (or walk) through the beautiful village of Ribchester and turn up Stydd Lane. At the end of the lane, the tarmac stops at a gate. Going through the gate it’s a short walk on a path through a field up to St Saviour’s.
Let’s walk up the path to the chapel door:
We can push open this heavy old door, enter the chapel and look back outside:
Once inside this tiny space, we see a walled-up doorway diagonally opposite us
The Norman doorway on the North wall has been blocked off, providing an alcove which is a focus for prayer There’s a votive-candle stand with some old wood behind it:
Oh my goodness! What a find for a door-lover!
It’s the original door, dating back almost a thousand years:
After changing the lens on my camera to take some macro shots of this amazing door, in my excitement I dropped said camera on stone floor. One of the dials broke off. Camera has now been sent off for repair. (Luckily I do have another one!).
What a memorable day!
If you like doors and would like to see more from bloggers around the world, take a trip over to Norm’s Thursday Doors.
Thank you for letting me show you the doors of Stydd Chapel.
And thank you for visiting PHOTOPHILE