St Mary’s Church, Whitby

St Mary’s Church, Whitby, is an Anglican parish church located on the town’s east cliff, overlooking the mouth of the River Esk. It is situated close to the ruins of Whitby Abbey, and the two buildings are often seen as iconic symbols of the town.

The church was founded around 1110, but its interior dates chiefly from the late 18th century. It is a Grade I listed building, and its distinctive tower and crenelated walls can be seen from miles around.

St Mary’s Church is a popular tourist destination, and it is also an important place of worship for the local community. The church is known for its beautiful stained glass windows, its elaborate pulpit, and its many interesting memorials.

One of the most famous features of St Mary’s Churchyard is the tomb of Captain James Cook, the renowned explorer. Cook was born in Whitby, and he is buried in the churchyard alongside his wife and several other members of his family. St Mary’s Churchyard is also a setting in Bram Stoker’s famous novel, Dracula. Stoker was inspired by the churchyard’s atmospheric setting and its many tombstones, which he used to create a sense of foreboding and suspense in his novel.

Today, St Mary’s Church is a thriving place of worship, and it is also a popular tourist destination. Visitors to Whitby can enjoy the church’s beautiful architecture, its many interesting features, and its stunning views of the town and the surrounding countryside.