Saint Josephs Shrine, Goyt Valley, Cheshire
Hidden away above the Goyt Valley, in what were once the grounds of Errwood Hall, sheltered from the ravaged of the moors above where one of Cheshire’s main Salters route pass, is this rather remarkable, perhaps even unique, and certainly enigmatic building.
No signposts direct you to it so it is rather a surprising fined.
I did not include this “religious” building in Sundays blog (https://davidoakesimages.wordpress.com/2016/01/24/sunday-time-for-church/) for I can find no recording that this building was ever consecrated….so not a formal or recognised place of worship.
Built in a simple round style with cut stone beehive roof this Shrine was built in 1889 by the Grimshawe family who owned the associated Errwood Hall. It was built in memory and thanks to a Miss Delores de Bergrin who was for some time the Family Tutor and close companion to Jesse Grimshawe.
No windows light the shrine and there is a solid wood door….inside there is a simple ‘alter’ of sorts and an image of St. Joseph. No pew or chair.
Even when Errwood Hall existed the Shrine was quite some distance from the Hall with its Chapel and the Family burial ground. Today it is even further off the beaten tracks and footpaths of this popular walking area So when visiting (passing bye) I am always amazed, even more pleased, to see that no vandalism has occurred and that time itself is being kind to the building. When you peak inside you will no doubt also be surprise to see just how clean the interior is and that a fresh display of flowers graces the alter. Who carries out this kindness I do not know, it requires some diligence, as what ever the season, what ever the weather I have always found fresh flowers on display.
It matters not if you are Religiously inclined or not, I guarantee you will pause, contemplate and say your own prayer.
(C) David Oakes 2016