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St Mary Magdalene, Little Hereford, Herefordshire

(52°18′29″N, 2°39′20″W)
Little Hereford
SO 554 680
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Herefordshire
now Herefordshire
medieval Hereford
now Hereford
  • Ron Baxter
02 November 2017

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Feature Sets

Little Hereford is a village in the N of the county, half a mile from the Worcestershire border and a mile from the Shropshire border. The closest town is Tenbury Wells, 2 miles to the E, and Leominster is 6 miles to the S. The village stands on either side of the A456 that links Kidderminster to the main Ludlow to Leominster road. The River Teme flows past the southern edge of the village. St Mary's is at this southern edge, close to the river, and is dominated by its massive 13thc W tower. It has a large 13thc chancel, remodelled in the 14thc and a 12thc nave with a single surviving N window. An interesting survival is the arrangements for the rood altar, with a niche above the chancel arch and the remains of an entrance on the nave wall to the S. The only Romanesque feature here is the plain font.


Little Hereford was held by the canons of Hereford Cathedral in 1086. It was assessed at 7 hides, 3 of which were waste. There were 5 mills in all, 1 and 4 halves belonging to the manor, and half a hide was held by a priest, implying a church in the 11thc.





Both RCHME (1934) and Brooks (1012) date the font bowl 12thc to 13thc and Brooks notes that the base is renewed, while Marshall (1949), followed by the Herefordshire HER suggests that it is contemporary with the earliest part of the church (i. e. 12thc.)


A. Brooks and N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: Herefordshire. New Haven and London 2012, 474-75.

Herefordshire Sites and Monuments Record, 1452.

G. Marshall, “Fonts in Herefordshire”, Transactions of the Woolhope Naturalists’ Field Club, I (1949), 8-9.

N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: Herefordshire. Harmondsworth 1963, 236.

RCHME, An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Herefordshire, 3: North-west, 1934, 65-67.