We use cookies to improve your experience, some are essential for the operation of this site.

All Saints, Otley, Yorkshire, West Riding

(53°54′15″N, 1°41′38″W)
SE 202 454
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Yorkshire, West Riding
now West Yorkshire
  • Rita Wood
09 Jun 1997; 20 May 2014

Please use this link to cite this page - https://www.crsbi.ac.uk/view-item?i=11212.

Find out how to cite the CRSBI website here.

Feature Sets

Large church with aisled nave, chancel with N and S vestries, transepts and W tower. Ryder (1993, 169) says 'the earliest visible masonry is in the 12thc chancel, but it seems possible that the nave of unusually large dimensions - is earlier.' Except for quoins at the NW angle of the nave, the surfaces are obscured (1993, 22-23). The chancel is only small in comparison with the large nave. Good collection of Anglo-Saxon sculpture on the floor in the S transept. There are two round-headed windows in the chancel, and a reset doorway with waterleaf capitals.


The archbishops of York had a palace at Otley, and major estates here from an early date.

Lawton 1842 says 'The archbishop of York holds the manor of Otley of the King, in capite, as pertaining to his barony of Sherburne.'

There has been an excavation of the site of the archbishop's palace, which lay north of the church and near the river Wharfe. The buildings found included a simple rectangular chapel (51 x 22 ft internally) with an apsed end and walls of 3 ft thickness. This became the undercroft of a chapel in the second half of the 12thc; a well-preserved capital was found, it had three scallops on each of two faces, which a deep arris outlining the curves of the shields. The excavators compared the capital to work at Kirkstall Abbey (Le Patourel and Wood 1973, pl. 2b).


Exterior Features




P. Leach and N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: Yorkshire West Riding, Leeds, Bradford and the North, New Haven and London 2009, 615-17.

G. Lawton, Collectio rerum ecclesiasticarum de diocesi Eboracensi; or, collections relative to churches and chapels within the Diocese of York. To which are added collections relative to churches and chapels within the diocese of Ripon, London 1842.

H. E. J. Le Patourel and P. Wood, 'Excavation of the Archbishop of York's manor house at Otley', Yorkshire Archaeological Journal 45 (1973), 115-41.

D. Peel, ed., All Saints' Parish Church, Otley: Historical Notes. Otley, before 1989.

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