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Diocese of

Hexham and Newcastle

Bishop Robert Byrne CO

Blessed John Ingram 1565 – 1594

John Ingram was born at Stoke Edith, Herefordshire. While a student at Oxford he was reconciled or converted to Catholicism and soon after left England to study for the Priesthood under Cardinal William Allen.

Following his Ordination in Rome, he spent some time in Europe before leaving for the English Mission. Bad weather forced his ship off course and he was eventually put ashore near Dunbar. It was in this Border region that he ministered.

Following an outcry in Scotland against Catholics he was forced to flee across the Border into England. He rested for some five hours at Wark, near Berwick, before attempting to return to his mission. It was while crossing the Tweed at Norham, near Berwick, that he was arrested.

From Berwick he was sent to Newcastle, then to York and eventually to the Tower of London for examination by Richard Topcliffe. He suffered grievous torture while in the Tower, yet steadfastly refused to betray his friends and associates.

From London he was sent to Durham to stand trial with two other Martyrs, St. John Boste and Blessed George Swallowell.

All three were convicted and condemned to be hanged, drawn and quartered. St. John Boste was executed that same day (July 24th) in Durham, Blessed George Swallowell in Darlington on Monday 29th July.

Blessed John Ingram was executed at Gateshead on Friday 26 July 1594 at a gallows near where is now the church of the Holy Trinity. He was only 29 years of age.

His last words to the people assembled to see him suffer were "I take God and His Holy Angels to the record that I die only for the Holy Catholic Faith and Religion, and do rejoice and thank God with all my heart that He made me worthy to testify my faith therein by the spending of my blood in this manner."

Saints of our Diocese     The jail    gallows on the town moor
Execution was barbaric, by hanging, drawing and quartering. Prisoners were kept in appalling conditions and suffered torture


A commemorative Walk from Newcastle to Gateshead in honour of Blessed John Ingram takes place each year on the Sunday near the 26th July.

This is arranged by members of the St. Vincent de Paul Society who revived the devotion which the late Fr. Joseph Scarr established in the 1920's and which had fallen into abeyance.

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul extends grateful thanks to the Anglican Community in Gateshead for their active co-operation and the use each year of St. Edmund's Chapel for the Service at the end of the Walk.


Fr. Paul Zielinski, Book Launch Saturday 22 June 2019

On Saturday 22 June 2019, Fr. Paul Zielinski was joined at Pauline Books & Media, next to St. Mary's Cathedral, Newcastle, by Bishop Robert Byrne for the launch of his book, ‘John Ingram, Priest and Martyr 1565 – 1594’.

The book provides the background to the tempest of the Protestant Reformation in England and its impact on the spiritual, social and cultural dimensions of society, including on Tyneside, in order to situate the coming into the country of the seminary priests like John Ingram, who had trained abroad and who had to live hunted lives in Elizabethan England, which had become a police state with an elaborate spy–network.

The book encourages the general reader to delve more deeply into the findings of Professor Eamon Duffy and Clare Asquith, who argue for a more multi-dimensional reading of this period in English history. Some of John Ingram’s letters and epigrams are included in the book, as well as a photocopy of his student entry and his signature in the Liber Ruba of the English College in Rome, courtesy of Professor Maurice Whitehead, the Schwarzenbach Research Fellow, acting as Archivist in the Archivum Venerabilis Collegii Anglorum de Urbe, Rome.

Anyone interested in acquiring a copy of the book, they are available at a cost of £5.99 + £2.50 postage and packing. Cheques should be made payable to Paul Zielinski.

Please send all requests to: Fr. Paul Zielinksi, St. Augustine's Presbytery, Wealcroft, Gateshead NE10 8QS.