Feast of Saint Alkmund of Derby

Today (19 March) we commemorate Saint Alchmund of Derby. Saint Alchmund’s church in Shrewsbury is dedicated to the saint possibly because his relics were brought here by Queen Aethelflaed to save them from the invading Danes.

The little we know about Saint Alchmund (or Ealhmund) comes from the late twelfth-century chronicle attributed to Simeon of Durham that seems to draw on a set of York annals 703-802.

Alchmund was the second son of Alhred or Alchred who was the Christian king of Northumbria from 765 until Aethelred deposed him in 774.

According to Simeon he fled to the kingdom of the Picts where he and his family were given refuge in the court of King Ciniod. In the ensuing dynastic struggles Alchmund returned to Northumbria with some forces where, after some initial success, he was killed around 800. There is some confusion among the chroniclers as to the mode and the date of his death. However, in his Historia Regum Simeon records that:“In 800 Alkmund, as some say the son of King Alhred of Northumberland was seized by the guards of King Eardwulf and by his order killed along with some of his fellow-fugitives.”

Within a short space of time he was honoured as a saint and recorded in an anonymous 9th century treatise that contains a list of saints’ resting places. In this treatise his relics were said to lie in a minster at Northworthy (Derby), ‘beside the River Derwent’.

For a full history of Saint Alkmund please visit our page dedicated to him here: More Information

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