St Mary the Virgin, Cardington, Bedfordshire

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Feature Sets (2)


The church, which has a chancel with N and S chapels, a nave with N and S aisles and N chapel, S porch and W tower was entirely rebuilt in 1898-1902 with the exception of the early 16thc. chancel and chapels. Re-tooled 12thc. voussoirs are reused in the 12thc. tower arch. Voussoirs from a second 12thc. arch have been reset in the N wall of the nave. The voussoirs are irregular in size.

There are a number of medieval tomb slabs set into the E wall of the S chapel. One of these is 11thc.


The Domesday Survey does not mention a church at Caddington, but it records that Hugh of Beauchamp and Judith, the niece of William I, held land there in 1086. The advowson of Caddington church was included in Simon de Beauchamp's foundation charter for Newnham Priory (Bedfordshire) in 1166, and this was confirmed in charters of William de Beauchamp, Henry II and of Thomas Mowbray, Duke of Norfolk. It remained in the possession of the Priory until the Dissolution.




Tomb slab

A tapered tomb slab, simply carved with a cross with wedge-shaped arms and panels containing simple four-strand plait in the interstices. The slab has been shortened at top and bottom.

d. set into wall
l. 0.89 m
w. 0.50 m


A full description of the graveslab may be found in the Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Stone Sculpture which dates the sculpture to c.1068. Hare also gives a full description.

The tombslab was discovered when the church tower was demolished prior to the late 19thc. rebuilding.


  • Domesday Book: Bedfordshire, Ed. J. Morris, Chichester, 1977, 23, 10; 53, 33.
  • The Victoria County History: A History of the County of Bedford, London, 1912, 3: 233-38.
  • D.Tweddle, M. Biddle and B. KjĂžlbye-Biddle, The Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Stone Sculpture Volume 4: South East England Oxford, 1995, 207.
  • M. Hare, 'An Anglo-Saxon Grave Cover at Cardington Church', Bedfordshire Archaeological Journal, 7, 1972, 83-84.
  • N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England, Bedfordshire and the County of Huntingdon and Peterborough, London, 1968, 63.
General view.


Site Location
National Grid Reference
TL 087 479 
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales): Bedfordshire
now: Bedfordshire
medieval: not confirmed
now: St Albans
now: St Mary the Virgin
medieval: not confirmed
Type of building/monument
Parish church  
Report authors
Hazel Gardiner