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All Saints, Shorncote, Gloucestershire

(51°40′8″N, 1°57′54″W)
SU 025 967
formerly Wiltshire
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Gloucestershire
now Gloucestershire
medieval Salisbury
now Gloucester
  • John Wand
10 August 2017

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The tiny village of Shorncote lies about four and a half miles S of Cirencester. Its name derives from the Old English for ‘cottage in a mucky spot’ (Pike, 2005). The church, which is built of stone rubble with stone slate roofs, consists of a nave, a chancel, a N chapel and a S porch. It dates from the late 12thc with later modifications, including the porch and chapel, made in 14thc. The church was restored by William Butterfield in 1883 and has been in the care of the Churches Conservation Trust since 1987. The chancel arch, the font, and the N and S nave doorways are Romanesque. There is also a blocked Norman window on the N wall of the chancel which was modified in 15thc probably to serve as an Easter sepulchre.


The Domesday Survey records that in 1066 the manor of 'Schrnecote' was held by Alward and by Humphrey the Chamberlain in 1086, when it had a population of 8 villeins and 3 slaves and valued £3. Since then the population has remained broadly constant.

Until 1896 Shorncote was in Wiltshire; it was then transferred to Gloucestershire. It lay within the Diocese of Salisbury until 1826 (Pike, 2005).


Exterior Features


Interior Features





There is a triangular stone on the threshold of the N doorway; Pike (2005) suggests that this is a recut tympanum and a line of sawtooth carving can be seen on its face.


Historic England Building Listing 1153975.

A. Pike, All Saints' Church, Shorncote, Gloucestershire, London 2005.

A. Williams and G.H. Martin (ed.), Domesday Book. A Complete Translation, London 2003, 190.

C. E. Ponting, 'Notes on the Churches visited in 1892', Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Society, 27 (1893), 15-40.

The Buildings of England, Gloucestershire I: the Cotswolds (3rd edition), London 1999, 609-10.

F. Arnold-Forster, Studies in Church Dedications, London 1899, III, 254.

M. Salter, The Old Parish Churches of Gloucestershire, Malvern 2008, 120-1.