Sharow is a village and ecclesiastical parish 1 mile East of Ripon in the Deanery and Diocese of Ripon. It is situated on high ground within half a mile of the former Ripon Railway Station. The hamlet of Hutton Conyers is also embraced within the parish.
When asked what it is that makes Sharow special (in a survey carried out in 1997) most people said that they liked the quiet countryside location and the good walks that can be had, while still being close to Ripon, Harrogate, York and other centres. High on the list of special features came the Church and a few individuals said that they just liked everything about Sharow!
Sanctuary Cross The oldest part of the village of Sharow, the Sanctuary Cross, dates back to the TWELFTH CENTURY. It is the only surviving Sanctuary Cross associated with Ripon Cathedral. It was originally one of eight such crosses around Ripon which existed to mark the limit of sanctuary for fugitives a mile from St Wilfrid’s Monastery – formerly part of the site of the current Cathedral Church. In 1900 it became the first artifact in Yorkshire to be owned by the National Trust.
The view towards Ripon Cathedral
Sharow Cross Plaque
Houses There are one or two houses in Sharow which retain sixteenth / seventeenth century features, but most of the old village was developed during the 1800’s.
A typical view of the original village street as it is today
Sharow Hall Sharow Hall was built at the time when a nephew of Mrs Allanson from Studley was given land to build a house. Several small cottages were also built to accommodate the gamekeeper, gardener, etc. This was a thriving area with two working farms, a Butchers Shop, a General Store and a Post Office. Now, all that remains is a Public House – the Half Moon Inn – an excellent venue for a quiet evening in the ‘local’.
Lucan House / Fairlawn / Lister House / Fairlawns (One house known by different names) This house was originally a private residence, occupied in 1838 by Mrs Frances Powell and known as ‘Lucan House’; in the 1860’s as ‘Fairlawn’ by Hardy Edward Esq.
The Farmer family lived in the house for many years until it was requisitioned by the Army during the second World War and was opened as a British Legion Home by the Princess Royal (the daughter of King George V) in 1950. It was then renamed ‘Lister House’. The property was vastly extended by The Royal British Legion during the 1960’s but the residents were eventually moved to a purpose built Home in the centre of Ripon. The property was subsequently sold to a developer in 1986 and two ‘blocks’ were created which were then converted into eleven private dwellings under the name ‘Fairlawns’. The Management Company for the present estate is Peachlace Developments Ltd.
Memorial to the old comrades who spent the last years of their lives at Lister House
St John’s House St John’s House, now privately owned, was for a long time the Vicarage. Lewis Carroll, the author of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ is alleged to have spent some of his holidays there during this period. Glebe Land The land between the old Vicarage and the Church was known as ‘Glebe Land’. There was a public right of way between the Manor House and St John’s House to allow people to go to Church.
‘Glebe’ is defined as ‘land belonging to a parish church or a portion of land going with a clergyman’s benefice’
In the 1970s the Church Commissioners sold the Glebe lands to a developer and this, at a stroke, more than doubled the total number of residents in the village and turned the parish of Sharow into a mixture of old and new.
There is other land in the village still owned by the Church Commissioners of the Church of England. The School In 1825 Mrs Lawrence of Studley Roger gave a Master’s House and a small schoolroom to the parish. It attracted only seven fee paying scholars. The School of 1857 cost £500 to build. The first Headmaster was Mr Edwin Williams who held the post for 42 years. The School house was, for a number of years until 2003, used as a home for the Parish Priest with pastoral care for the Parishof St John’s Sharow with Holy Innocents Copt Hewick and St Mary’s Marton le Moor.
The Village Hall & Playing Field The hall and grounds are regularly used by a host of groups including the cricket and football clubs, schools, table tennis and dancing groups and the local gardening club.Durham Caravan Club’s Annual Rally takes place in August for one week. Two other Caravan Club Rallies are allowed in the year. The maximum number of caravans permitted for any one rally is 30.
The Playing Field – this land is owned by
the Church Commissioners (Not the local church)