St Michael's, Barton

As we were returning from Ullswater, we spotted a signpost to 'Historic 12th Century Church' and thought it was worth a look.

St Michael's chuch at Barton, near Pooley Bridge, was built around 1150 - very soon after the Norman conquest which only reached this corner of England in 1092 with the occupation of Carlisle by William II.
St Michael's and its unusual centre tower
The unusual feature, unique in Cumbria, is the squat tower in the centre. Its immense weight is supported inside by two double arches which cut the church in two.

The double rounded chancel arch below the tower
Outside, the graveyard is circular, suggesting a pre-Christian site.
The circular graveyard
View from the graveyard, across the north Cumbria hills
An unusual church, definitely worth the detour.