Start of 900 word article


Luck was with us that afternoon. The tide was out, which meant we could drive across the causeway to Holy Island, tour the castle on its lofty perch, and return to the mainland without getting wet. Two miles out in the North Sea, just below the Scottish border, this was the little island to which St Aiden came from Iona in 651, and from his monastery proceeded to spread Christianity throughout the mainland. Two relics from this period were saved. The famous Lindisfarne Gospels, dated 698, are in the British Museum, while Durham Cathedral became the final resting place of St Cuthbert, Lindisfarne's bishop who died in 687. Lindisfarne was renamed Holy Island after the re-founding of a Benedictine priory on the earlier monastery site, in the year 1082.