On the way to Harewood House church I drove through Arthington, so on the way back I called in to have a look at this church too.
Arthington is a small village in Wharfedale, in the City of Leeds metropolitan borough in West Yorkshire, England. It is a civil parish which, according to the 2011 census, had a population of 532, district with Otley as its post town. It is in the Otley ward of the City of Leeds.
The village mainly extends from the Wharfdale pub at the western end to the former parish church of St Peter on the eastern end. This dates from 1864 and is a Grade II Listed building like many others in the village. It became redundant because of the small congregation, and in 2007 it was renamed St Mary and St Abanoub as Coptic Christian church. It serves a congregation living in West, North and East Yorkshire.
I have been looking to find information on this church, there were no photos of the inside, through reading about Arthington, I came across the church was called St Peters. I looked some more and found this snippet of information.
Church of St Peter built in 1864 at the expense of William Sheepshanks of Arthington Hall It was designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott and the first vicar was Thomas Sheepshanks.
Threatened with redundancy in 2005 it was taken over in 2008 and reorganised by the St. Mary and St. Abanoub Coptic Church
Arthington Priory was an English monastery which was home to a community of nuns in Arthington, West Yorkshire, founded in the mid-12th century. The priory land is occupied by a residence called "Arthington Hall", which was built around 1585, and little, if anything, remains of the priory. The site of the priory church is possibly now occupied by a farmhouse called The Nunnery.The community was the only one of nuns of the Cluniac congregation in Yorkshire and one of two in England. It was established through a grant by Peter de Arthington (link)
Coptics are descended from the ancient Egyptians - the word Copt is derived from gypt' which stems from the Greek word Aigyptos meaning Egyptian' - they have had a long tradition of Christianity stretching back almost 2,000 years
Coptic church believes that prophecy was fulfilled when St Mark, who wrote one of the four gospels, established the orthodox church in Egypt in the first century AD.
Found another Ordinance Survey Benchmarks
Due to the church running into decline over the years, and the new members being a small group, the outer areas of the church have been taken over by the vegetation. There is evidence of children playing in the church grounds.
The family name of Sheepshank hadn't caught my eye at the time and I have no photos of any graves with this name.
This grave did look interesting, as it mentions the person Matthew Taylor being a Sculptor.
Born 2 February 1837
Died 9 July 1889
Active: 1861 - 1889
Country of birth and death: England
Sculptor, monumental sculptor, stone carver
Born and died in Leeds, Yorkshire. He was the son of William Taylor (c.1793-1874, born in Grewelthorpe, Yorkshire) a moderately successful joiner and carpenter. Judging by Matthew's estate he ran a very successful business, possibly as a monumental or architectural sculptor as well as a maker of busts. One of Taylor's executors was a neighbor in the village of Arthington, William Henry Beever, architect. Matthew left five children, his oldest surviving son, Francis B Taylor (born c.1869 in Leeds) is listed as an artist in the Census Returns of 1891.
This record includes information supplied by Kurt Etchingham.
Wealth at death: £2,437 14s. 5d.
Probate date: 1 August 1889
While looking at the family name Sheepshank, I came across
Mary Sheepshank, (see belowe
Mapping the Practice and Profession of Sculpture in Britain and Ireland 1851-1951
Mary Sheepshanks was born in 1931 and brought up at Eton College where her father was a housemaster, but childhood holidays spent at her grandparents’ house in Snowdonia gave her a love of the countryside and wild places, which has been an influence on her writing. Her recently published memoirs, Wild Writing Granny feature wartime Eton College, lessons in Windsor Castle and her early married years as headmaster’s wife in Sunningdale School, followed by her time in Yorkshire running the Sheepshanks family home.
Mary wrote stories and verses from an early age and her first published poem appeared in The Sunday Times when she was seventeen. Her first novel was accepted by Century and published in 1995 when she was sixty-four. Since then five more novels have been published in the UK and USA to critical acclaim and translated into seven languages. Her fifth and sixth novels appear under her maiden name of Mary Nickson and she is currently working on a seventh novel.
Mary has also written a commissioned book on bereavement for Michael Joseph, which became a Penguin paperback. She has had five collections of poetry published by Fighting Cock Press and her poems have appeared in various anthologies and poetry magazines, and in journals as diverse as The Spectator, The Countryman, The Times, Yorkshire Journal and Farmers Weekly. Mary moved from the Yorkshire Dales to Scotland in 2006. She has three children and eight grandchildren – one of whom used to refer to her as his ‘wild writing granny’ hence the title of her memoirs.(LINK)