- source: Family History Library Catalog
- the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia
Holystone is a small village in Northumberland, England.
It lies on the edge of (and just within) the Northumberland National Park on the north bank of the River Coquet. A significant landmark is Holy Well, traditionally the site of early Christian baptisms, and the source of Holystone's water supply.
In the early 12th century Holystone became the home of a priory of Augustinian Canonesses. The priory buildings were demolished during the reformation in 1541.
A Vision of Britain through Time provides the following description of Holystone from John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales of 1870-72:
- "HOLYSTONE, or HALLYSTONE, a township and a parochial chapelry in Rothbury [registration] district, Northumberland. The township lies on the river Coquet, 6 miles W by N of Rothbury, and 12½ N by W of Scot's Gap [railway] station. Acres: 2,906. Population: 135. Houses: 31.
- "The chapelry contains also the townships of Dueshill, Barrow, Linsheeles, and Harbottle; the last of which has a post office under Morpeth. Acres: 19,900. Population: 426. Houses: 83. Much of the land is moor. Campville cottage is situated on the site of a Roman camp. A Benedictine convent, for eight nuns, was founded at Holystone, about 1254, by one of the Umfravilles of Harbottle Castle; and several curious fragments of sculpture, which seem to have belonged to it, are built into the walls of the present church. The Lady's well, supposed to have belonged to the nunnery, and situated in a little grove of firs at a short distance, is a square basin, with a copious spring of pure water; has, on the brink, an old moss covered statue of an ecclesiastic; and has also, rising from the water, a tall cross, with the inscription, "In this place Paulinus the Bishop baptized 3,000 Northumbrians." A prayer station for pilgrims coming to Holystone was on the moors between it and Elsdon, and is still marked by remains of an ancient stone cross. The living is a [perpetual] curacy, annexed to the vicarage of Alwinton, in the diocese of Durham. The church was partly restored, partly rebuilt, in 1849; and has two memorial windows, of 1857, to the Dawson family."
Holystone was an ancient parish in the Coquetdale Ward of Northumberland. It became a civil parish in 1866, but in 1955 it was abolished and absorbed into the neighbouring parish of Harbottle. (A Vision of Britain through Time does not follow up on Marius Wilson's reference to its being a township and a chapelry.)
- Northumberland Archives previously known as Northumberland Collections Service and Northumberland County Record Office. Now based within Woodhorn Museum in Ashington and providing free access to numerous records for local and family historians alike.
- Full postal address: Museum and Northumberland Archives, Queen Elizabeth II Country Park, Ashington, Northumberland, NE63 9YF; Phone: 01670 624455
- There is a branch office in Berwick upon Tweed.