THMA member Hull law firm Myton Law has made a donation towards essential improvements at the city’s oldest church St Mary the Virgin on Lowgate, which dates back before 1333.

With their maritime law expertise, specialist shipping, rail and logistics lawyers Myton Law were pleased to support St Mary’s, which houses monuments to Hull’s historic maritime pioneers.

St Mary’s has been fundraising for several years for desperately needed interior work to ensure the church can stay open.  Known as an ‘Oasis of Peace at the Heart of Our City’, St Mary’s is without heating, toilets and kitchen facilities and needs new electrics and a new floor.  Despite that, it is home to a dedicated congregation and choir and to three soup kitchens a week operated by volunteers Hull Homeless Outreach.

News of the £500 donation from Myton Law will, St Mary’s hope, awaken other Hull businesses to the need for financial support if this architectural gem is to make itself fit to continue as a place for worship, community use and visitors.

In the spirit of the ship builders & owners and international merchants who once attended St Mary’s, today Myton Law works for clients in the shipping sector across the world.  Its offices on Nelson Street overlooking Hull’s Victoria Pier stand on earth excavated when Humber Dock was created and were first occupied by Westerdale’s, a mast, block and pump manufacturers.  Later, during the 20th Century Hull Associated Tug Owners, which became United Towing, were based there sending tugs across the world.

St Mary’s hopes to start work on its major improvement scheme, which will cost over

£1 million, in May.  It has secured a generous legacy and grants from Allchurches Trust, an unnamed Trust established in the name of an internationally successful Hull-born businessman, the Diocese of York, the Joan Tottle Trust and the National Churches Trust.

However, St Mary’s, which does not receive any direct financial support for the building from the Church of England, is currently £79,484 short of its target for the first phase of works and is calling on individuals and businesses in the Hull area for donations.

St Mary’s Priest-in-Charge Father Ian Walker said, “We are very grateful for Myton Law’s generosity which will help to ensure the continuing of St Mary’s ministry to the city and to the Old Town in particular. We hope that other Hull companies and entrepreneurs might be willing to follow Myton Law’s example.”

Commenting on Myton Law’s donation, director John Habergham said, “We are a relatively small, but niche law firm very much with our roots in Hull, but, like the city itself, with an international outlook.

“If you visit St Mary’s you will see many prominent names associated with Hull’s shipping past, such as Benjamin Blaydes, who it is believed built the Bounty, and Thomas Wilson, founder of the Wilson Line.  Other fine monuments are linked to Hull’s importance as a major port, such as that to 19th Century Chairman of Hull Dock Company Joseph Robinson Pease, and to Hull’s anti-slavery movement, with a memorial to the Thorntons who were related to Wilberforce.

“It is good to be able to support this improvement work and to know that this corner of Hull’s maritime past will be saved and that St Mary’s can continue to help those in need in the city for years to come.”

You can donate to St Mary’s’ improvement project online via the St Mary’s’ ‘Give a Little’ page – you can find a link to the page on St Mary’s’ website Home page.  Alternatively, you can pay by cheque using a donation form which is on the website or can be obtained by post by calling St Mary’s on Hull 618199.




For further press information please contact:

Amanda Habergham, St Mary’s Project Officer, Tel: 01482 861614, m. 07968 746090



Issued on behalf of:    St Mary the Virgin, Lowgate, Hull, HU1 1EJ.