St Mary’s – the historic heart of Barnard Castle
St Mary’s Church has stood at the heart of Barnard Castle’s story from the very beginning. When Bernard Baliol built his stone castle here in 1130, St Mary’s Church was founded alongside it. As the castle grew, so too did St Mary’s; positioned close to the marketplace in the centre of the new town, at the crossing of its two most important roads, and opposite the castle entrance, St Mary’s was one of the first buildings visitors to the town would see. And while the castle, set high on a rocky crag, bears the stories of invasions, barons and kings, St Mary’s sits proudly in the town centre, bearing witness to the everyday life of the town and its residents, from cradle to grave, for over 800 years.