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St Mary, Upton, Berkshire

(51°34′46″N, 1°15′29″W)
SU 515 870
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Berkshire
now Oxfordshire
medieval Salisbury
now Oxford
medieval St Mary
now St Mary
  • Ron Baxter
25 August 1991, 30 October 2013

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Upton is a spring-line village at the foot of the Berkshire Downs in the Vale of White Horse districty of the county. The church has an aisleless nave and chancel of c.1100 with a timber bell-turret. There are three original windows in the nave and one in the chancel, all uncarved. Romanesque sculpture appears on the S doorway (plain 12thc. N doorway) and chancel arch and a plain font.


A manor was recorded at Upton in the Confessor's reign, held by Beorhtric and assessed at 10 hides. In 1086 it was held by Turstin and assessed at 5 hides. Soon after it passed to Wynebald de Ballon, who gave a moiety of it to Bermondsey Abbey in 1092. This was held by the abbey until the Dissolution.

The church was a chapelry of Blewbury throughout the Middle Ages, until the parish of Upton and Aston Upthorpe was formed in 1862.


Exterior Features


Interior Features


Chancel arch/Apse arches




The chip-carved chancel arch with its depressed head may date from the end of 11thc. Unusually Pevsner failed to record the doorways. The S doorway lacks capitals, imposts and label and is clearly not in its original state. The voussoirs are of two different lengths, suggesting that they were once in two orders of a grander doorway. If this is so, the four voussoirs containing half-chevrons may have been springers.


N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England. Berkshire. Harmondsworth, 1966, 247.

G. Tyack, S. Bradley and N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England. Berkshire. New Haven and London 2010, 572.

Victoria History of the Counties of England: Berkshire. London. vol. 4 (1924), 280-91.