Yorkshire's highest church celebrates ancient festival of Candlemas

Candlemas at GreenhowA threatened ‘polar vortex’ failed to halt Nidderdale’s Celtic Candlemas service held this year on February 2 at Yorkshire’s highest church, St Mary’s, Greenhow,  which lies between Pateley Bridge and Grassington.

More than sixty hardy souls turned out for the traditional service held at the village church, which is 420 metres above sea-level. They included the Chair of Bewerley Parish Council, Tim Whitney and the Mayor of Pateley Bridge, Mike Holt, who gave the readings.  

Traditional hymns were interspersed with anthems by local choir, the Nidd Chorale who amongst other musical pieces, sang Gustav Holst's, 'Nunc Dimmittis,' one hundred years after it was first performed. Candles were lit and symbolically placed on the altar as thanks were given for the many gifts and talents we all possess.

Candlemas recalls the Presentation of the Christ child at the Temple - and was also celebrated at Ripon Cathedral  where hundreds of candles were lit throughout the building– see pictures below. 

Cathedral CandlemasCathedral candlemas

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