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St Catherine, St Catherine, Somerset

(51°25′49″N, 2°19′14″W)
St Catherine
ST 778 702
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Somerset
now Somerset

medieval Wells
now Bath & Wells
  • Robin Downes
  • Robin Downes
27 January 2010

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Where the river Avon runs past Batheaston, 2.5 miles NE of Bath city centre, it makes a right-angle turn. At that angle, from the N, the river receives the water of St Catherine’s Brook, which stream runs down steep (and quite well-wooded) valleys from the Cotswold plateau near Cold Ashton and Marshfield over the county border in Gloucestershire. Northwards from a point about 1 mile from its confluence with the Avon, St Catherine’s Brook forms the boundary between Somerset and Gloucestershire. The parish of St Catherine is the most NE in Somerset, well ensconced by the S folds of the Cotswolds. About 1.8 miles from Batheaston a lane runs past the nucleus of the Court, the Court Farm and the Church of St Catherine: there are few other buildings. Indeed, the whole valley has clearly not attracted settlement apart from farms; it is extremely sequestered despite its proximity to Bath and major communication routes.

The church sits at an altitude of about 85m above OD (about 35m higher than the Brook). The church was built in the 12thc as a chapel of ease for Bath Abbey, and was altered and remodelled extensively c. 1490 for Prior Cantlow of Bath. The Romanesque elements consist of a chamfered tower arch and the font.


St Catherine does not appear in Domesday Book.


Interior Features




  1. F. Arnold-Forster, Studies in Church Dedications, London 1899, III, 242.

Historic England listing 1277121.

N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: North Somerset and Bristol, Harmondsworth 1958, 253.

C. S. Taylor, 'Bath, Mercian and West-Saxon', in C. S Taylor (ed.), Transactions of the Bristol and Gloucestershire Archaeological Society, 23, Bristol 1900, 129-161.