Wath parish church lies in a tree-filled churchyard, near the centre of the village, which itself was built around a ford of the River Dearne. It is next to a former manor house, said to be on the site of the medieval Fleming manor, a building that is now the Town Hall. The church has a long nave, with a W tower surmounted by a spire. The tower has lower rubble stages, with early openings to a belfry; the highest stage is Perpendicular.
The vill is in Domesday Book but no church is mentioned. The rectory, divided into three parts, in the patronage of the Fleming family (two parts) and the Thornhill family (one part), was consolidated c.1234 (Thompson and Clay 1943, 105-6). Holmes (1902, 497, 498) states that most of the churches built in this area c.1100 were endowed in moieties (Campsall, Wath, Tankersley, Penistone and Darfield). This could have been due to custom, or several owners sharing a manor. A manor normally came to one hand in the next 100 years, although this was not the case at Darfield. Some rights in Wath appear to have come to St Nicholas, Pontefract. In 1438 the advowson of this Pontefract hospital was given to Nostell Priory, who thereafter presented to Wath (Thompson and Clay 1943, 106-8).
R. Holmes, The Chartulary of St John of Pontefract 2. Yorkshire Archaeological Society Record Series 30, Leeds 1902, 497, 498.
J. Hunter, South Yorkshire, Deanery of Doncaster, Nichols, London, 1828, I, 72.
G. Lawton, Collectio rerum ecclesiasticarum de diocesi Eboracensi; or, collections relative to churches and chapels within the Diocese of York. To which are added collections relative to churches and chapels within the diocese of Ripon., New edition, London, 1842, 239.
W. K. Martin, History of the Ancient Parish of Wath-upon-Dearne, Wath, 1920.(not seen, material derived from Hunter with additions, and quoted by Thompson and Clay 1943).
N. Pevsner, revised by E. Radcliffe, The Buildings of England, Yorkshire, The West Riding, Harmondsworth, 1967, 537.
P. F. Ryder, Saxon Churches in South Yorkshire, South Yorkshire County Council Archaeology Monograph no.2. Sheffield, 1982, 100.
A. H. Thompson and C. T. Clay, Fasti Parochiales II part II. Yorkshire Archaeological Society Record Series 107, Leeds, 1943, 105-6.