The Catholic Church across Yorkshire's historic West Riding since 1878

The Catholic Church across Yorkshire's historic West Riding since 1878

Fr Michael Sharratt RIP

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Fr Michael Sharratt. He died on the evening of Wednesday 25 August at the Freeman Hospital, Newcastle, following a short illness. A priest of the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle, Fr Sharratt will be well-known to many former students of Ushaw College, with which he was associated for almost seventy years. Please keep Fr Michael and his family in your prayers.

Funeral arrangements

Fr Michael’s body will be received into St Cuthbert’s Chapel, Ushaw College at 7pm on Wednesday 15 September and Mass will be celebrated.
The Bishop of Hexham & Newcastle will celebrate the Requiem Mass at Ushaw at 12 noon on Thursday 16 September. The Mass will be followed by burial at Ushaw Cemetery. Light refreshments will be available at Ushaw College.
The Requiem Mass will be live-streamed and a link will be made available on the Diocese of Hexham & Newcastle website.
Due to Covid-19 restrictions and limited space in the Chapel, could you please email Paula Henley ( at Bishop’s House in Newcastle if you wish to concelebrate at the Requiem Mass.

A distinguished Catholic historian, philosopher, and theologian, Fr Sharratt was born in Rennington, Northumberland and entered Ushaw College as a thirteen year-old seminarian. He was ordained to the priesthood in 1963.

He studied at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome and won scholarships to study at the Universities of Munich and Oxford before returning to Ushaw College in 1967 as Lecturer in Philosophy. He was appointed Librarian and Archivist in 1977.

In 2014 Fr Sharratt was honoured by Durham University with  an honorary Doctor of Letters at a ceremony in Durham Cathedral.

On this occasion Professor Paul Murray, Director of the University’s Centre for Catholic Studies said: “Dr Sharratt has made a significant scholarly contribution to UK Catholic intellectual life and a wider academic contribution in relation to the Ushaw libraries.

“He has done vastly more than any other living individual to study, analyse, catalogue, care for, and make accessible for wider scholarly use, Ushaw College’s remarkable bibliographical and archival holdings.

“Thanks to his sustained efforts over more than 35 years, these holdings have remained intact and available to scholars worldwide. They are now the focus of significant fresh possibilities for Durham University which hold great promise alike for the academy, for the region, and for the UK Catholic community.”

Despite his great achievements, Fr Sharratt remained a modest man. He said in response to the news of his award, “The morning I left our house to sit the important 11-plus exam for a scholarship my father gave me the wise advice; “Don’t try to be clever”. I’ve done my best to follow his guidance.”

May He Rest in Peace