St James, Ludgershall, Wiltshire

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Feature Sets (2)


Ludgershall is 16 miles NE of Salisbury and the church lies to the N of the village. The neighbouring castle had to be built before 1103 since King Henry I visited it, and the church of St James was erected in the following decades. The building consists of a chancel, a nave with N and S chapels, a S porch, and a W tower. The chancel was rebuilt in the early 13thc and transepts were added in the 14thc. The W tower fell down before 1662 and was rebuilt in 1675. The nave and W tower are Norman in date with a small Norman window and a blocked N door.


In 1066 the Domesday Survey records that Alward held the manor, which passed to Edward of Salisbury in 1086; it had a value of £6.5. The church was granted to Amesbury priory in 1228; it was united with Biddesden church in 1446.


Exterior Features


N doorway

The N wall of the nave features a blocked Norman door composed of alternating limestone and greensand.

Height 2.40m
Width of opening 1.20m


A watercolour made by John Buckler in 1805 (Devizes, Wiltshire Museum) depicts the church prior to the restoration carried out by John Loughborough Pearson in the 1870s.


  • Victoria County History: Wiltshire, vol. XV, 119-35, especially 130-2.

  • J. Buckler, Unpublished album of drawings. Devizes Museum, vol. I, pl. 13.

  • N. Pevsner and B. Cherry, Buildings of England: Wiltshire. Harmondsworth 1975, 2nd edition, 314-5.


Site Location
National Grid Reference
SU 263 508 
now: Wiltshire
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales): Wiltshire
medieval: Old Sarum
now: Salisbury
now: St James
medieval: St James
Type of building/monument
Parish church  
Report authors
Allan Brodie 
Visit Date
25 Apr 1995, 1 May 2004