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Image Source: Vivienne Crow

Kirkoswald doesn’t make it on to the itinerary of many tourists and yet it’s a pretty little village in a lovely location. Built, like many Eden Valley settlements, of the attractive local red sandstone, it sits on the eastern banks of the River Eden, a mile from its nearest neighbour, Lazonby.

There are several interesting buildings here. St Oswald’s Church is worth visiting for its historic well, its Saxon grave covers and, most unusual of all, its bell tower, which is actually perched on top of a hill about 150 yards from the church itself. Opposite the church is the College, built around a fifteenth-century defensive pele tower and once a college for priests. The scant ruins of Kirkoswald Castle are located to the south-east of the village. Although the building is not open to the public, it can be seen from a public footpath that passes nearby.

A charming and well-maintained path through the woods and meadows beside Raven Beck starts from Ravenghyll lane near the village shop.