St Peter's Church

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History of the village and early church

The first written record of the village is by an Anglo-Saxon chronicler who recorded that a Witan was held in "Wallesburnam" by King Burgred of Marcia in 862 AD.

Domesday Book called the village "Walesborne", which was given to Henri de Newburgh.

The first stone church was built in the late 11th or early 12th Century, as is attributed to Henri de Newburgh.  Henri also provided endowments of Glebe land for the maintenance of a Vicar, as did his son and grandson.  These were appropriated by the Priory of Kenilworth, confirmed by Deed in 13 48. The Priory with its Canons presented the vicars until the reign of Elizabeth I.

Other than the tower, much of the church was pulled down and rebuilt in 1847-48 to the designs of the Architect J P Harrison Esq., of London.  A report of the reopening was written in the Warwick Advertiser for 13th April 1848, which gives some details of the previous building:-

"The old church was built by Henri de Newburgh, and dedicated to St Peter, and therefore is of great age, from which cause it had fallen into decay, and required very extensive repairs.  At some remote period the old Norman roof had been replaced by a flat slatted one, lighted by skylights, and had a flat ceiling; large galleries an round three sides of the church, in a most unsightly manner; the pews were also of the old close description.

The entrance to the church was in the tower, under the west window, which had been barbarously mutilated to allow the insertion of a doorway; the old south entrance had been blocked up, and the ancient porch removed.

 

The church guide goes on to state:

GALLERY

above the tower arch, for village musicians before the organ was installed in the chancel. 

(Short church guide)

 

Wellesbourne1.JPG (272415 bytes)
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3  -  A late evening picture of the church.

 

 

Dove's reference for the bells:

Wellesbourne Hastings, Warwick, S Peter (GF), 8, 10-0-24 in G. Thursdays 

ACCESS

Map reference : SP277556

The church stands can be found immediately behind the local inn in the village of Wellesbourne Hastings, and was still open at the time of our visit at 5.15pm.   (April 2002)

 

 

 

Information kindly supplied by 

 

 

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