HU5242 : Ruins of St Mary's church, Cullingsburgh

taken 7 years ago, near to Setter, Shetland Islands, Great Britain

Ruins of St Mary's church, Cullingsburgh
Ruins of St Mary's church, Cullingsburgh
The ruined village of Cullingsburgh on Bressay has a ruined church. It is set in a walled churchyard which contained several sheep when I visited. Whether the sheep had been intentionally let in to graze the grass of the burial ground, been let in accidentally by earlier visitors, or had worked out a method of getting in here under their own trotter power I have no idea - but they seemed to be trapped within.
Cullingsburgh (the local pronunciation of the village is "Culliesbroch") was obviously quite a reasonable sized settlement, and had its own church of St Mary's, but the entire village including the church are now ruinous. The dates on some of the gravestones when compared to the devastated appearance of the buildings would suggest that burials continued here after the village had been abandoned, and quite possibly after the church itself had fallen into wrack and ruin.
The wonderful Bressay Stone, now in the Museum of Antiquities in Edinburgh was discovered here by chance in 1852 by a labourer digging a waste piece of ground near to St Mary's Church here. The church was said to be ruinous even then.
Adjoining the church to the north is the remains of a Pictish broch, but these are only scant remains.
Bressay :: HU5040
The Isle of Bressay lies just off the eastern coast of Mainland, Shetland opposite the capital of Lerwick and effectively protecting that town and its harbour from the excesses of the weather. The sea between the two is the Sound of Bressay, and a regular ferry service plies the short trip between them.
Bressay is quite a large island being about 10.8 miles² (2805 ha) making it the 5th largest of the constituent islands of Shetland after Mainland, Yell, Unst and Fetlar. It has about 400 inhabitants, and some industry mostly the fish processing plant in the northwest of the island.
The highest point on the island is Ward of Bressay which achieves 741' (226m)
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HU5242, 26 images   (more nearby )
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Date Taken
Wednesday, 31 August, 2011   (more nearby)
Friday, 25 November, 2011
Geographical Context
Village, Rural settlement  Religious sites  Islands  Derelict, Disused 
Island (from Tags)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! HU 5210 4229 [10m precision]
WGS84: 60:9.7056N 1:3.7897W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! HU 5213 4227
View Direction
West-northwest (about 292 degrees)
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Image classification(about): Geograph
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