St. Mary, Sticklepath, Okehampton
The church and its site represent almost a thousand years of worship in the village of Sticklepath. It is nestled beneath the White Rock, where John Wesley preached, on the Northern edge of Dartmoor. The current building dates from 1875 when it was rebuilt after a fire. A place of worship has occupied this site for over a thousand years, and some ten years ago it was on the point of being closed and sold for development, but after the threat of closure The Friends of St Mary’s was formed to ensure that the church was secured for future generations. The stained glass windows are of particular interest. It is a place of peace and a popular resting place for walkers and visitors to the area.
The rear of the church has been re-ordered to provide a heritage space tracking the various religious and spiritual connections in the village over hundreds of years. This is part of a plan to expand the use of the church building for wider community use, whilst retaining worship space as its main focus.
The Archangel’s Way, a new Pilgrimage route for the 21st century was launched at the end of July 2021. The Archangel’s Way welcomes all to engage with our fascinating Dartmoor landscape, find sanctuary in 12 historic churches, and space for the soul through walking, poetry and the beauty of Dartmoor, past and present. The 35+ mile Pilgrimage route begins from St Michael’s, Brent Tor, and ends at St Michael the Archangel, Chagford. The Small Pilgrim Places of St Michael de Rupe, Brent Tor, Christ Church, North Brentor, St Mary, Sticklepath, St Mary, South Zeal and St Mary, Throwleigh are among the churches included on the Way. There are places of accommodation, a Pilgrim Passport for walkers, a series of guided reflective walks through the year and poetry, music and art along the Way. It forms part of the countywide Devon Pilgrim project and is open to all and not limited to a basis of faith.
Standard opening times: The church is open every day (locked at sunset). Service times are posted in the church porch but are usually 1st Sunday 10.30 am Village Praise and 4th Sunday 8.30 am Holy Communion.
Sticklepath, Okehampton, Devon, EX20 2NL, United Kingdom
Grid reference: SX 63909 94178
By car: Leave the A30 dual carriageway – if travelling West at Whiddon Down and after approximately 4 miles St Mary’s is situated towards the West end of Sticklepath village on the left. If travelling from Okehampton take the B3260 to Sticklepath and the church will be on the right.(opposite Bowdens Hostas garden centre).
Public transport – 6A Okehampton to Exeter bus service – see Stagecoach bus timetables.
There is a small step into the porch, where there is a permanent ramp, and a level garden surrounding the church. Toilet facilities are available at the National Trust Finch Foundry or local pubs. Refreshments are available at the Taw river pub and The Devonshire Inn, within easy walking distance, and accommodation information can be found on the village website www.sticklepath.org. It could be suitable for quiet days during the summer months, and the hospitaller can be available with prior notice.
Mrs Carol Johns,