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Portesham, Dorset

(50°40′8″N, 2°33′50″W)
SY 6024 8564
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Dorset
now Dorset
medieval Salisbury
now Salisbury
medieval St Peter and St Peter
  • Howard Austin Jones
19 Jul 2013

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Sufficient survives of the 12thc church to indicate that it had a N, and probably a S aisle also. The present building consists of a 13thc chancel, and 16thc N and S aisles at the E end of the nave which were extended W in the 13thc when a W tower was added. The S porch is 16thc, relocated in 1877, the N aisle of c.1832 was rebuilt in 1877, and the W tower was also rebuilt in 1877.


The settlement was valued at £12 in the Domesday Book, when it was held jointly by St Peter's Abbey, Abbotsbury and Hugh son of Gwip's wife. By 1291 the church was appropriated, unusually the rector was specified as the pittancer, rather than the Abbey as corporate rector. The rectory was valued at £17.


Exterior Features


Interior Features



Glynne noted two arches to the blocked N arcade on his visit to ‘Portisham’ in 1830, but to judge from the fabric around, he can have seen only the one surviving today.


S. Glynne, Notes on some Dorset Churches. In Fletcher, JMJ: Proceedings of the Dorset Natural History and Antiquarian Field Club 45 (1923-4), 47.

J. Newman and N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: Dorset, Harmondsworth 1972, 337-338.

Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset, Vol. 2: South East (part 2), Royal Commission on Historical Monuments, London 1970, 240-242.