Visit Hexham and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
Hexham, Northumberland. Hexham is endowed with a beautiful setting on the Tyne. It is convenient for exploration of Hadrian's Wall and a major social and shopping centre. Hexham's historical associations have left some delightful street names, for example, Priestpopple, Hencotes, Quatre Bras and St Mary's Chare. The abbey church makes Hexham an important place, but it also has other rewards: the market square beside the church has a small colonnaded shelter put up in 1766; the Moot Hall, or council chamber, was the 12th-century gatehouse of a castle; the 14th-century Manor Office was the gaol until 1824; the grammar school was founded in 1599; and a pretty park crossed by a burn lies next to the abbey church. Another park is laid out on The Seal, a hill which affords an excellent view of the town.
The first church in Hexham was founded by St Wilfrid on land given him by Queen Etheldreda. It was completed in 678. St Wilfrid was the queen's spiritual adviser and such an influential one that he persuaded her to leave her husband and became a nun.
Stone for that first church came from the Roman camp of Corstopitum near Corbridge. It was said to have been a magnificent building for its day, but only the crypt now remains — the finest Anglo-Saxon crypt in England. It may have housed relics of St Andrew to whom the church was dedicated. Two stones in the crypt have Roman inscriptions.
The Anglo-Saxon Frith Stool (St Wilfrid's chair) in the chancel marks the site beneath of the Anglo-Saxon apse. The stone chair, believed used for Northumbrian coronations, in later days gave sanctuary to anyone who sat in it, as its name implies. The font bowl, also Anglo-Saxon, was carved from a Roman stone.
The church standing now was begun by the Augustinians in the 12th century. The beautiful choir is l3th-century with a l5th-century roof. The transepts, also 13th-century include on the west wall the strikingly broad and worn Night Stair which once led from the monks' dormitory. The nave was partly in ruins before its rebuilding in the early 20th century by Temple Moore in 14th-century style.
Hexham's church is especially rich in furnishings. A notable ornament is the Anglo-Saxon Acca cross, set up in 740 at the grave of Bishop Acca. Another is the Roman monument to Flavinus, showing the Roman standardbearer riding over a crouched Briton who is armed with a dagger. There are three other Roman altars in the church and many carved Roman and Anglo-Saxon stones in the rebuilt wall of the nave.
There are 38 splendid medieval misericords, screens and rare painted panels. Benches and bench-ends were sold in 1858 for firewood. Prior Rowland Leschman's 15th-century chantry includes intriguing stone caricatures by local masons of St Christopher, St George and dragon, musicians, a fox preaching to geese, a jester and representations of vanity, piety, purity, gluttony and other human attributes.
Nearby cities: Newcastle Upon Tyne
Nearby towns: Allendale Town, Alston, Brampton, Consett, Corbridge, Haltwhistle, Haydon Bridge, Prudhoe
Nearby villages: Acomb, Aydon, Bardon, Bardon Mill, Barrasford, Bellingham, Birtley, Blanchland, Castleside, Catton, Chollerford, Chollerton, Colwell, Corbridge, Edmundbyers, Elrington, Fourstones, Great Swinburn, Gunnerton, Harlow Hill, Harnham, Heddon-on-the-Wall, Humshaugh, Hunstanworth, Ingoe, Kielder, Kirkwhelpington, Matfen, Mickley, Moorside, Muggleswick, Newbrough, Nunwick, Otterburn, Ovingham, Riding Mill, Ryal, Sandhoe, Simonburn, Slaley, Stagshaw Bank, Stamfordham, Stocksfield, Studdon, Thockrington, Thorngrafton, Wall, Wall Houses, Warden, Wark, Whitfield, Whittonstall, Wylam
Have you decided to visit Hexham or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a Hexham bed and breakfast (a Hexham B&B or Hexham b and b)
- a Hexham guesthouse
- a Hexham hotel (or motel)
- a Hexham self-catering establishment, or
- other Hexham accommodation