We use cookies to improve your experience, some are essential for the operation of this site.

St Nicholas, Longparish, Hampshire

(51°11′33″N, 1°23′30″W)
SU 426 439
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Hampshire
now Hampshire
  • Ron Baxter
06 April 2006

Please use this link to cite this page - https://www.crsbi.ac.uk/view-item?i=9233.

Find out how to cite the CRSBI website here.


Longparish is towards the N of the county, 3 miles E of Andover. It extends for some 3 miles along the valley of the river Test, including the settlements of East and West Ashton, Middleton, Forton and Gavelacre. Middleton is the oldest of them, and it is under that name (Middeltune) that it is recorded in the Domesday Survey and throughout the Middle Ages. The name of Longparish was not generally used before the mid-16thc. The church in Midddleton, and stands between the road through the villages and the river to the S, on the low-lying pasture land of the flood plain. To the W, between Longparish and Andover, is Harewood Forest.

St Nicholas’ church is of flint and has an aisled nave with 4-bay arcades of c1200 or slightly later, a 19thc organ chamber off the N aisle and a S doorway. The S doorway is 13thc and is protected by a 19thc timber porch. The organ chamber arch is said to be old, but if so it has been almost entirely replaced. Most of the aisle windows are ogee-headed triplets dating from the 19thc restoration, but the end walls of both aisles have reticulated windows of c1320. The chancel has a c1200 S doorway and windows of the same period or slightly later. The chancel arch is of a similar date too, and the pillar piscina is 13thc, with stiff-leaf decoration. On the N side of the chancel is a vestry. At the W end, the tower is of the early 16thc with a NW turret and battlemented parapet. It is decorated overall with chequered flushwork. There was a major restoration of the nave in 1853. Before that date the nave had a clerestory and lead-covered roofs; the aisle roofs being of a very low pitch. The restorers increased the pitch of the aisle roofs to meet the main vessel roof, thereby obscuring the clerestory, and all roofs were tiled. The end walls of the nave and aisles were rebuilt to match the new roof arrangements. In 1956-58 another major restoration included the replacement of worn exterior stonework, the shoring up of the E wall, the waterproofing of exterior walls and the replacement of the interior mortar render with a thin lime wash. At the same time, the improving texts covering the inner walls that had been completed in 1884 were cleaned off. Replacement of the 19thc roof tiles was carried out from 1984. The church presents problems, therefore, in that many of its original features are probably slightly too late for inclusion, and all of them have been heavily restored or completely replaced in the 19thc. The S chancel doorway is recorded here, along with the nave arcades; probably early 13thc but including such Romanesque ornament as trumpet scallop capitals.


Middleton (see General Description) was held by the Benedictine nunnery of Wherwell before and after the Conquest. It was assessed at 20 hides in the Confessor’s reign and at 10 in 1086, and at that time there were also two mills, a fishery for the hall and nine acres of meadow. The manor house at Middleton, then on a dry site and ruinous, was rebuilt by Abbess Euphemia (1226-57) on a new site on the river bank. The nunnery retained the manor and the church until the Dissolution.


Exterior Features


Interior Features



Pevsner dates the arcades and the priest’s doorway c1210. Stylistically, in terms of the arch profile and impost types, the doorway should be earlier, but the use of hollow chamfers on the jambs is unlikely before c 1200. A similar priest’s doorway is found at Bullington, and a single multi-fluted capital (as on the N arcade) of a slightly earlier type is found at Barton Stacey, both nearby. The 16thc tower is related to others nearby at Micheldever and Barton Stacey.


English Heritage Listed Building 139687

N. Pevsner and D. Lloyd, The Buildings of England. Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. Harmondsworth 1967, 323.

Victoria County History: Hampshire. IV (1911), 406-09.

Victoria County History: Hampshire. II (1973), 132-37.