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St Michael, Little Bedwyn, Wiltshire

(51°23′38″N, 1°34′54″W)
Little Bedwyn
SU 292 662
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Wiltshire
now Wiltshire
medieval Old Sarum
now Salisbury
  • Allan Brodie
  • John Wand
28 Aug 1992

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Feature Sets

The current church, built of flint rubble and ashlar, consists of a chancel with a N vestry, an aisled nave with a clerestory, a S porch and a W tower with a recessed spire. The proportions of the tall and narrow nave suggest that it could be Anglo-Saxon in origin but with the N nave arcade inserted in the late 12thc and the taller S arcade in the early 13thc.


Before and after the Conquest, Great and Little Bedwyn belonged to the king and in 1086 the estates were held by Henry de Ferrers. There were 8 mills, 2 woods, and 200 acres of meadow. Domesday Book records Beorhtweard the priest holding the churches in both villages, as his father did before 1066. The church land was worth 60s. According to VCH Little Bedwyn church had been built by 1158. This is probably too early for any of the surviving carved fabric.


Interior Features



The church was refenestrated in the 15thc. It was restored in 1882 by Henry Weaver and in 1936 by Henry Messenger.

It is clear that the form of the arcades is a reflection of the more accomplished nearby nave of Great Bedwyn church. However, while both arcades may be broadly original in form, their detailing has been restored in the 19thc.


F. Arnold-Forster, Studies in Church Dedications or England’s Patron Saints, London, 1899, III, 46.

J. Buckler, Unpublished album of drawings. Devizes Museum, vol. VIII.

Historic England Listing 1184327

N. Pevsner and B. Cherry, Buildings of England: Wiltshire. Harmondsworth, 1975, 2nd edition, 296-97.

C.E. Ponting, 'Notes on Churches in the Neighbourhood of Marlborough', Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Magazine, 28 (1894), 120-46.

P. Slocombe (ed.), Architects and Building Craftsmen with work in Wiltshire, Trowbridge, 1996.

Victoria County History of Wiltshire, Volume XVI, 50-69.

J. Ward 'Great Bedwyn', Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Magazine, 6 (1860) 261-91.

T.H. Wyatt, Lambeth Palace Library, ICBS 6872 1868