Loch of St Tredwell, Papa Westray (ORK)

Grid reference

HY 494 506 (accurate position)

Six-figure easting & northing

349400 105060







Nearby places

St Tredwell's Chapel, Papa Westray (ORK) (0.14 miles)

St Boniface's Church, Papa Westray (ORK) (1.3 miles)

Papa Westray, parish (Orkney) (1.36 miles)

Lady Kirk, eccles. Westray (ORK) (3.59 miles)

Westray, parish (Orkney) (3.59 miles)

Object Classification



John Brand, having described nearby St Tredwell's Chapel, gives an account of local cult in the Loch: "This St Tredwel’s Loch nigh to the East end of which this Chappel is [St Tredwell’s Chapel], is held by the People as Medicinal, whereupon many diseased and infirm Persons resort to it, some saying that thereby they have got good. As a certain Gentleman’s Sister upon the Isle, who was not able to go to this Loch without help, yet returned without it, as likewise a Gentelman in the Countrey who was much distressed, with sore Eyes, went to this Loch and Washing there became sound and whole, tho he had been at much pains and expence to cure them formerly. With both which Persons, he who was Minister of the place for many Years, was well acquainted, and told us that the saw them both before and after the Cure. The present Minster of Westra told me, that such as are able to talk, use to go so many times about the Loch, as they think will perfect the Cure, before they make any use of the Water, and that withouth speaking to any, for they believe, that if they speak, this will marr the Cure. Also he told that on a certain Morning, not long since, he went to this Loch, and found six so making their circuit, whom with some difficulty, he obliging to speak, said to him, they came there for their Cure. How it cometh to pass that this Loch should accomplish the cure of any, I leave to my Reader to judge, whether it be by any Medicinal or healing Vertue in the Water, which I incline not to think, the Cure being so circumstantiated; or if the force and strength of the imagination of the Persons so afflicted, may have any tendency that way, which, some judge, hath its own influence, in some such like cases: Or, rather, by the Aid and assistance of Satan, whom God in his Holy and wise Providence may permit to do so for the further judicial blinding and hardning of these who follow such unwarrantable and unlawful courses, God so punishing them, by giving them up to such strong delusions. Yet I hear, that when they have done all, that is usual for them to do; as going about the Loch, washing their Bodies or any part thereof, leaving something at the Loch, as old Clouts and the like &c. It is but in few, in whom the effect of healing is produced." (Brand, New Description, 58-9).

Relationships with other parishes

Within Papa Westray, parish (Orkney)

Within Papa Westray, parish (Orkney)