Isle of Man Post presents a set of stamps showcasing the Islands churches of The Parish Walk using the photography of Manxman Peter Killey.
Freelance writer and journalist Valerie Caine tells the colourful history of each church through the fascinating issue text.
Most of the churches are on ancient sites and there is evidence that the old parish church of Marown was in existence as early as 1214.
About Parish Walk
An annual event
The Parish Walk is an annual event, held on the Island in June and sees walkers of different ages and abilities.
The walkers passes through one or more of the 17 touch points at the parish churches along an 85 mile route.
Each year the walk attracts up to 2000 competitors and entrants have 24 hours to complete the course.
In addition, One of the unique features is that contenders are still classified in the results so long as they reach Santon church, as a minimum (11 miles in).
Origins of the Parish Walk
The origins of the Parish Walk date back to 1852 when Coroner John Cannell made a 90 mile journey around the Island on horseback in 15 hours.
The next year he did it on foot, visiting each of the Island’s 17 parishes.
In 1913 the event was first undertaken in its current form by the Manx Sporting Club and Isle of Man Times and repeated every year.
Originally the walkers had to touch the church door in each of the 17 parishes but modern timing gates have overtaken that.
The Parish Walk remains an integral part of Manx life today.
Churches of The Parish Walk Stamps
Renowned photographer, Peter Killey, who resides on the Island provided the images for the stamp collection.
Peter Killey has spent 20 years photographing Manx life images from around the Isle of Man.
His work mainly comprises of landscape, seascape, nature, architecture, heritage and transport.
The striking stamp collection titled ‘ Churches of The Parish Walk ‘ uses Peter’s high definition photography to capture images of all 17 churches.
We start with, St German’s Cathedral, Peel, which became the Island’s cathedral in 1980.
The Cathedral houses artwork by celebrated Manx artist Archibald Knox and Marown Parish Church, which is said to have been in existence as early as 1214.
Also featured is St Lupus Church, Malew, whose origins are unclear, but there are possible signs of mediaeval architecture.
St Lupus Church was thought to be one of the most important churches on the Island at that time.
Inside, a font possibly dating from the twelfth century and an early representation of the three legs of Man symbol from around 1500, make for items of historical interest.
The much commemorated Manx historical figure, William Christian (aka Illiam Dhone), is also buried here.
To add to this, is Parish Church of St Columba, Arbory, which was consecrated in 1759 after a dispute with the Duke of Athol over the cost and necessity of the church.
It is the resting place of Captain John Quilliam of the Battle of Trafalgar, and Dr John Clague, Manx physician, philanthropist and composer.
Peter Killey said:
“Photography, Manx history and Architecture have been a passion of mine since I was a young man growing up on the Island.
This latest stamp collection ‘ Churches of the Parish Walk ‘ has been an absolute pleasure for me to work on.
I want to share with you some of my Isle of Man church images into a beautiful Manx stamp set for everyone to enjoy.
It has also been very interesting during the project to learn interesting facts behind these 17 beautiful churches on the Parish Walk.”
Maxine Cannon, Isle of Man Stamps and Coins General Manager said:
“To celebrate the churches on the Isle of Man, we decided to take a unique approach and showcase the parish churches that are the historical timing points for the Island’s Parish Walk.
We would like to thank those individuals who were pivotal in helping to bring the collection together.
We thank Peter Killey for his stunning photography and Valarie Caine who provided the accompanying text for the issue.
Finally, Isle of Man Post Office would like to wish competitors all the very best in the races.”
Pictured is Richard Gerrard with a stamps blow up.
Richard has completed the Parish Walk 8 times, won it 3 times and has the course record, which is 14 hours 40 minutes and 8 seconds.
17 churches features on stamps
Holy Trinity Church, Patrick St German’s Cathedral, Peel St Michael’s Church, Michael St Patrick’s Church, Jurby Marown Parish Church, Marown Maughold Parish Church, Maughold St Bridget’s Church, Bride St Lupus’ Church, Malew St Brendan’d Church, Braddan All Saints’ Church, Lonan St Andrew’s Church, Andreas St Sanctain’s Church, Santon Kirk Christ, Lezayre Parish Church of St Columba, Arbory St Mary’s Church, Ballaugh St Peter’s Church, Onchan Holy Trinity Church, Rushen
Title: Stamps celebrating Churches of The Parish Walk
Date of Issue: 15 June 2016
Country: Isle of Man
Denominations: £0.45 x 17
Source: Isle of Man Stamps