CumbriaBOOTStCatherine(dougsimCC-BY-SA3.0)1 DougSim

St Catherine

A magnificent setting among the dales at the upper end of Eskdale with the backdrop of Scafell Pike, St Catherine’s dates back to the 12th century.

Boot, Cumbria

Opening times

Open daily dawn to dusk.



It is said in the 6th century a hermit lived on Arment Hill, a quarter mile east of the church. People used to travel miles to seek his prayers and healing. His well is still recognisable and some of the farmers still draw water from it when they bring their children to baptism in the church stepping stones.

The River Esk is easily crossed at St Catherine's and the old stepping stones are still used by those coming to church and those walking from The King George up to Doctor Bridge, one of the best riverside walks in the area.

The position of this church is determined by both the presence of the Holy Well and the Stepping Stones, it is very ancient. Fortunately the Victorians did not spoil its simplicity when they rebuilt it. A barn, beside a river, under the mountains where the Christian God has been worshipped by generations of valley people and their visitors.

The octagonal font has among its decorations ancient marigold designs found on Roman pagan alters and early Christian tombstones. The stained glass windows are worth studying. The east window depicts St Catherine, the Good Shepherd and St Cecilia. The south window portrays the Annunciation and the north window depicts the Last Supper.

The church is near to Boot village, about half a mile from Dalegarth Station at the end of the Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway.

  • Wildlife haven

  • Spectacular stained glass

  • Magnificent memorials

  • Glorious furnishings

  • Fascinating churchyard

  • Enchanting atmosphere

  • Captivating architecture

  • Walkers & cyclists welcome

  • Train station within 250m

  • Space to secure your bike

  • Parking within 250m

  • Level access throughout

  • Dog friendly

  • Church of England

Contact information

Other nearby churches

St Olaf

Wasdale Head, Cumbria

The smallest church near the deepest lake and the highest mountain in England.

St Michael & All Angels

Muncaster, Cumbria

Located in the grounds of Muncaster Castle, it is believed that worship on this site dates to pre Christian times.