The Legend of St Bega
The Legend of St Bega
The Legend of St Bega
The Legend of St Bega
The Legend of St Bega
The Legend of St Bega
The Legend of St Bega
The Legend of St Bega
The Legend of St Bega

© the copyright holder. Image credit: Rob Terwey / Art UK

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An almost life-sized iron oxide carving of Saint Bega standing in a small, basket-like sailing boat with a tattered sail. The saint is wearing a bracelet or arm-ring which was venerated as a her relic.

The Legend of St Bega





Accession number


Work type



St Bee's Parish Council

Work status


Unveiling date

16th September 2000


at all times

Inscription description

St. Bega was the daughter of an Irish king leaving sometime between 600 and 900 AD. She refused to marry the man of her father’s choice and fled in a small boat. Washed up here, she lived alone as a hermit caring for local people when she moved on to an unknown destination she left behind her arm-ring. Although it is not certain the Bega existed, the village was named after her, first as Kirby Becoc, later Saint Bees. The monks of the Priory, founded here after 1120, were the custodians of a bracelet or arm- ring believed to be her relic and they told her story. The ring remained here until 1539 when the Priory was dissolved. After 1539, a garbled version of the legend became currency including this story will be commended she wanted to find a nunnery she approached the Lord of Egremont laughing the promised her as much land as the snow would cover the next day the next day was Midsummer day but it snowed! This statue was unveiled on 16 September 2000 by the Mayor of Copeland, Councillor, Mrs Joan Hully Names of villagers are inscribed on a scroll in a capsule placed in the plinth by the Chairman of the Parish Council, John Halle. Sculptor: Colin Telfer of Maryport


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Located at

Station Road, St Bees

CA27 0DH