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St Mary, Shelton, Bedfordshire

(52°18′27″N, 0°29′5″W)
TL 034 688
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Bedfordshire
now Bedfordshire
  • Hazel Gardiner

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Feature Sets

The building consists of chancel, N chapel, nave with N and S aisles and W tower. In the 12thc. the church had a chancel and a nave with N aisle. The chancel was rebuilt in the 13thc. and the N chapel added mid-14thc. The tower is late 14thc. and the N aisle was lengthened at this time. The S arcade may also be late 14thc. and seems to have been constructed in emulation of the N arcade (VCH, 163). The nave clerestorey is 15thc. 12thc. sculpture is found on the E respond of the N arcade.


The Domesday Survey does not mention a church in Shelton, but records the following as land holders: the Bishop of Coutances, Nigel de Aubigny, Albert of Lorraine and Adelaide, Hugh of Grandesmil's wife.

The advowson of the church is not mentioned until the mid-13thc. when it was divided between two manors, that of John de Croxton and Henry de Soleby. (VCH, 162)


Interior Features



Hare records the presence of a 4.57 m rubble quoin at the SE angle of the nave, and suggests that this could be an indication of an early aisleless nave.

Domesday Book: Bedfordshire, Ed. J. Morris, Chichester, 1977, 3, 5; 24, 6-7, 49, 3; 54, 1.
The Victoria County History: A History of the County of Bedford, London, 1912, 3:161-65.
M. Hare, 'Anglo Saxon Work at Carlton and other Bedfordshire Churches', Bedfordshire Archaeological Journal, 6, 1971, 38.
N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England, Bedfordshire and the County of Huntingdon and Peterborough, London, 1968, 142.