contact the church mouse


[Clickable links for further details]

Roof & Fabric Appeal Fund Report

Renowned Mathematician in Crambe Churchyard.


History of the name “Crambe”

In the 11th Century the parish of Crambe was known as Crambun.
In the 13th Century it was Gramum or Cramburn.
In the 17th Century it became Crampholme or Crawme.

Today, the pronunciation is still Crawme or Crarme despite the change of spelling to Crambe.

The name Crambe refers to a bend in the river, and the village sits on a rise in a bend of the River Derwent.


History of the Parish of Crambe

Crambun was reckoned among William the Conqueror’s estates in Doomsday 1086 and was described as formerly belonging to Sumorled and consisting of a manor and four carucates. A carucate was a Scandinavian unit of assessment of land for tax purposes used in the northern and eastern counties until the 13th century. It was equal to as much land as could be tilled with one plough and a team of eight oxen in a year; the amount of land depended on the heaviness of the land and, no doubt, on the expertise and energy of the man ploughing, but it is reckoned to have been between 100 and 300 acres. Four carucates is, therefore, between 400 and 1200 acres or between 0.6 and 1.8 square miles.

The manor then passed to Robert Brus and then to Kirkham Priory when it was founded in 1122. The prior of Kirkham was thus the ‘Lord of Lands’ and also had the gift of the vicarage down to 1553 when the Priory was surrendered to the Crown. Edmund Forster then held the manor and was followed by other lessees until Elizabeth rented it to Thomas Bamburgh of Howsham in 1590.

The manor then descended eventually to Hugh Cholmeley in 1745. As his son, Nathaniel, had no son, the estate then eventually passed to Nathaniel’s third daughter, Henrietta, who married Sir George Strickland. In 1874 his son, Sir Charles William Strickland, inherited followed by his son, Sir Walter William Strickland, in 1909. It has remained in the Strickland family ever since.

Another manor was described in Doomsday, but it consisted solely of 4 curacates of land. It was absorbed into the other manor in the sixteenth century. Today the Parish consists of the villages of Crambe, Barton le Willows and Whitwell on the Hill. For a time Whitwell was separate as in 1858 Lady Lechmere of Whitwell Hall provided a church at Whitwell for ‘those to infirm to walk to Crambe’ and also to provide High Church services.

In 1923 the parishes became reunited.

Crambe Today

St Michael's ChurchCrambe is a small hamlet of eighteen houses and cottages. It still has two farms within the village boundary and several outlying ones. It is situated in the Howardian Hills in a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Apart from the lovely setting its greatest asset is the fine 11th century church, St Michael’s, pictured left.

St Michael's Church