St Martin, Scampston, Yorkshire, East Riding

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This small Victorian church, set in a pleasant estate village, was rebuilt from 1845. The builders reused many Norman stones quarried from a light yellow limestone and the light grey Hildenley limestone. These stones are now weathering, diversely but decisively. They probably came from the Norman Scampston chapel, on whose foundations the present church was erected (Stratford, 1911, 7); parts of the N and W walls were retained (Pevsner and Neave, 1995, 669). 

Diagonal tooling can be seen on many of the stones, but no sculpture.


Scampston was a chapel to Rillington for centuries before it was demolished 1845-46 (Stratford (1911) 52). 



In 1919, Morris noted in the graveyard, on the north side, 'the quite plain bowl of an old circular font.’ This font was not found by the fieldworker, inside or out (Morris, 1919, 284).

There is an illustration of ‘the old church’ in Stratford (1911, facing page 56). This shows a view from the SE of a small church with a chancel, a nave and a western bellcote with two bells. The nave appears to be thatched and used as a cottage; the chancel is of two bays, of which that to the W has a round-headed doorway with a label and end-stops. This bay has a pilaster to the E and may have had a row of corbels.

Stratford maintains that sufficient old stone was reused to avoid ‘the necessity for consecration (and its fees)’ (Stratford, 1911, 52; also Lawton, 1842, 277-78).


  • G. Lawton, Collectio rerum ecclesiasticarum de dioecesi Eboracensi, London, 1842, 277-78.

  • J. E. Morris, The East Riding of Yorkshire. 2nd ed., 1919, 284.

  • N. Pevsner and D. Neave, Yorkshire: York and the East Riding, London, 1995, 669.

  • W. T. Stratford, Historical notes of Rillington and Scampston, Norton, 1911.

The church from the road junction, SW.
The church from the SE.
W wall
Various stones in the W wall


Site Location
National Grid Reference
SE 861 755 
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales): Yorkshire, East Riding
now: North Yorkshire
medieval: York
now: York
now: St Martin
Type of building/monument
Parish church  
Report authors
Rita Wood 
Visit Date
17 April 2007