Re­mem­ber­ing Sarah Losh

Country Life Every Week - - Town & Country -

The Chapel of rest at Wreay, near Carlisle in Cum­bria, has been trans­formed into a her­itage cen­tre to hon­our Sarah Losh, the 19th-cen­tury ar­chi­tect and de­signer de­scribed by Si­mon Jenk­ins as ‘an in­di­vid­ual ge­nius, a Char­lotte Brontë of wood and stone’. Sarah’s in­ter­est in ar­chi­tec­ture was awak­ened by a grand tour in 1815 and she was con­sid­ered to be ed­u­cated ‘far be­yond the reach of her sex, and in­deed of most men’. Losh saved the church at Wreay by do­nat­ing land and funds, en­rich­ing it with or­na­ments and carv­ings, and she cre­ated the Chapel of rest as an ex­act copy of St Pi­ran’s Or­a­tory at Per­ran­porth, Corn­wall, which had just been un­cov­ered by drift­ing sands and had re­ceived much cov­er­age in the news­pa­pers. When the artist ros­setti saw her work, he wrote to his mother that Losh must have been a ‘great ge­nius and should be bet­ter known’. Lo­cal groups, in­clud­ing the twelve Men of Wreay, a cen­turies-old char­i­ta­ble trust, have helped fund the project, in con­junc­tion with the her­itage Lot­tery Fund (www.stmaryswreay.org).

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