Church of St Mary the Virgin


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
Church of St Mary the Virgin, Kempsford


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Statutory Address:
Church of St Mary the Virgin, Kempsford

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Cotswold (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SU 16136 96499


SU 19 NE 8/94

KEMPSFORD KEMPSFORD VILLAGE (south side) Church of St Mary the Virgin

26.11.58 I Anglican parish church. Early C12 nave, chancel added C13, alterations in C14, tower and nave heightened mid C15. Restored c1858 by G.E Street and south east chapel added; further restoration 1880s. Coursed and dressed stone, stone slate roof to chancel and chapel, nave roof not visible. Nave and chancel with central tower, north and south porches, southeast chapel.

Large tower of three stages with offsets and stepped diagonal buttresses rising to crocketed pinnacles and openwork parapet. Three-light belfry openings on each side with stone mullions and arched hoodmould with carved stops; middle stage has small single light with square hoodmould below a square framed with three concave moulded lights, centre one blind; lowest stage has very large four-light windows to north and south with king mullion, two transoms and Perpendicular tracery and single-light over to south, niche to north. Clock face on north side of tower.

Nave retains deeply splayed round arch single-lights of Norman period and zig-zag moulded string course below additional Decorated windows added in C14. Clerestorey of mid C15 has three three-light cusped trefoil-head windows with square hoodmould and string course with grotesques. North porch has Norman doorway with chevron arch and carved shafts, porch itself of early C16 with ogee-headed niche and flanking crocketed pinnacles on east wall, a typical feature of the area, and four-centred archway with concave mouldings and angel shields below gable rebuilt in late C19. South porch said to contain equally fine Norman doorway but inaccessible at time of survey (March 1985). Chancel of late C13/early C14 has three-light trefoil-head lancet with cusped sexfoil at east end, north side fills three-light Decorated window with reticulated tracery and small blocked trefoil-head doorway. Chapel by Street of 1858 has two three-light with reticulated tracery on south side.

Interior: eight bay nave roof with three tiers of arched wind bracing, corbels for rood screen at east end of nave. Tower has doorway in north-west corner, lierne vault decorated in heraldry in 1862 and stone seats around side walls. Fine stained glass by Kempe in north window. Chancel has wagon roof, with painted ciborium probably of same date as tower decoration, plaster has been removed from walls in chancel, probably when two bay arcade opened up by Street to form south chapel. Large Perpendicular tomb on north wall with two mutilated seated figures and recumbent effigy probably of earlier date. Pulpit by Street, with marble painted over, choir stalls with fanning leaf finials also by Street.

Listing NGR: SU1613196498


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Verey, D , The Buildings of England: Gloucestershire The Cotswolds, (1979)


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

Images of England

Images of England was a photographic record of every listed building in England, created as a snap shot of listed buildings at the turn of the millennium. These photographs of the exterior of listed buildings were taken by volunteers between 1999 and 2008. The project was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Date: 12 May 2007
Reference: IOE01/16580/27
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Anthony Rau. Source Historic England Archive
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