Chapel of Our Lady of the Crag, Knaresborough

3.9
#4 of 6 in Historic Sites in Knaresborough
The Chapel of Our Lady of the Crag is a 'Marian' shrine dedicated to the Virgin Mary and her son, Jesus Christ. The Chapel was built by someone known as 'John the Mason' in 1408. A Royal Charter attests to the date, but the rest of the founding story is either legend or conjecture! John the Mason probably worked to obtain stone for Knaresborough Castle from the nearby quarry. The story goes that his son was almost killed by a rock fall in the quarry. John fervently prayed to the Virgin Mary to save him. When he emerged, miraculously unscathed, from the rubble, John built this chapel in thanksgiving.

There are two other reasons that might have prompted him to have hewn the Chapel out of the rock. Firstly, the Chapel is a wayside shrine, and in 1408 it was en route to Knaresborough's priory (destroyed at the Reformation). Secondly, John would have loved to have displayed his skills to the people of his day; the Chapel is the work of a master craftsman, with a carved altar, vaulted ceiling, roof bosses and gargoyles, looking every bit like an erected building, but with a special quality, created from the crag itself.

The group that have cared for the Chapel for the past 20 years are now a Trust and registered with the Charities Commission (1171904). The group open the Chapel to visitors and pilgrims, and raise funds for the upkeep of the Chapel and minor site maintenance projects.

The chapel is open 2pm - 4pm on Sundays from Easter until the end of September (weather permitting). To arrange a visit outside of these times please contact us at - cragchapel@gmail.com
Plan to visit Chapel of Our Lady of the Crag during your Knaresborough vacation using our convenient Knaresborough road trip site .
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Chapel of Our Lady of the Crag Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
35 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • Had been here before and wanted to show my kids as they had not seen before. Hadn’t realised it was only open on Sundays so sadly the chapel was closed. We still managed to walk up to it and took some...  more »
  • This medieval chapel is so tiny you could easily miss it. You reach it by climbing a steep, narrow pathway that threads its way through a herb garden. The herb garden is planted on the slope below the...  more »
  • This really is well worth the visit, true history and genuine. In Knaresborough, dont miss this and make sure you take pictures  more »
Google
  • We arrived to find it was unfortunately closed it has limited opening times but we were extremely lucky as three of the ladies who are trustees were working in the grounds and very kindly not only opened the chapel for us but also gave us a mini tour and talk on the history one of the ladies explained that they have limited resources to open daily but if anyone wishing to visit the chapel contacts their web site they will.do their best to accomodate4. Well worth a visit lovely location and very interesting history
  • Interesting walk up through a herbal garden but once we got there it was closed. That's ok but a few photos outside of what we might have seen would have made the walk worthwhile
  • I'm sure it's lovely when it's open. Think it said April to October and only on a Sunday and then only 2-4pm. Bit limited time frames but I guess it's the nature of what it is for the people that worship there, somewhere tranquil.
  • It's really nice, small but you get a calm feeling once you're in there.
  • Lovely place very quaint, loved the herb/medicine garden.
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