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St Botolph, Knottingley, Yorkshire, West Riding

(53°42′39″N, 1°14′38″W)
SE 500 241
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Yorkshire, West Riding
now West Yorkshire
  • Rita Wood
11 Jun 1996; 09 Aug 2014

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Feature Sets

The medieval church would have dominated the view from the river, as it stands above a slope running down towards the deeply-entrenched Aire. Only the parish church and town hall remain to show that this end of town was once the centre. Redevelopment to increase the modern housing has shifted the commercial centre westwards. Both church and town hall have old quarries adjacent; the stone is a flaggy Magnesian limestone and not a freestone.

The church has a W tower, nave with porch, and chancel with vestry and organ chamber. All surfaces have been rendered and plastered inside, and on much of the exterior except for the tower.

No Romanesque sculpture, but the interior splay of a simple round-headed window is seen from inside in the W wall of the nave.


'Formerly a chapel in the parish of Ferry Fryston' (Ryder 1993, 164).


Exterior Features



Pevsner (1967, 299) says the lower part of the tower is 'Norman, see one window in its E wall which has come to light'; Ryder rightly says this window is in the W wall of the nave, so Pevsner's opinion on the age of the tower may be unreliable. Ryder says the church has a broad 'preaching box' nave of about 1750 and that the W tower, possibly early 19thc., was heightened in 1873. The medieval nave, and perhaps a S aisle, were incorporated into the 18thc. nave (Ryder 1993, 36, 164). See also Butler 2007, 266-67.

The next church downstream is Birkin, once similarly close to the river Aire.


L. A. S. Butler, ed., The Yorkshire Church Notes of Sir Stephen Glynne (1825-1874), Y. A. Soc. Record series 159, Woodbridge 2007.

N. Pevsner, Yorkshire: West Riding. The Buildings of England, Harmondsworth, 1959. 2nd. ed. revised E. Radcliffe. 1967.

P. F. Ryder, Medieval Churches of West Yorkshire, West Yorkshire Archaeology Service, Wakefield, 1993.