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St Peter, Pirton, Worcestershire

(52°7′9″N, 2°10′4″W)
SO 886 468
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Worcestershire
now Worcestershire
medieval Worcester
now Worcester
  • G. L. Pearson

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Built of coursed rubble, the church has a 12thc. nave and a later medieval chancel. The side walls of the nave are thicker at the E end, indicating that there was once a central tower. The present, timber-framed N tower is probably of medieval date. Romanesque sculpture is found in the S doorway of the nave, in the chancel arch and on a corbel above the doorway inside the church. There is also a plain font.


In 1086, Pirton was held by Walter Ponther, ancestor of the Poer family, of Westminster Abbey; it was later held as two manors, which may already have existed at an earlier date. Walter Poer's estate at Pirton, later known as Pirton Power or Abbot's Pirton, descended with Battenhall in the Poer family. William Poer of Pirton is mentioned in 1175.


Exterior Features


Interior Features


Chancel arch/Apse arches

Interior Decoration





The VCH suggests that the original building dates from the early 12thc., but the decorated scallops in the chancel arch indicate a later 12thc. date. The frontal chevrons on the S doorway indicate a date in the third quarter of the 12thc. (Stratford in Pevsner 1968, 46). Some of the components of the doorway (second order capitals and R impost) appear not to have been made for it (could they be reused fragments from the postulated destroyed central tower?) Pevsner mentions the 'Pirton Stone' (Oxford, Ashmolean Museum; see description, Pevsner 1968, 244–5), thought to be a die for casting pilgrims' badges and probably dating from the early Romanesque period. Doorways set in a projecting bay, as here, occur in a number of churches in the county (see Preface to Worcestershire).

The Victoria History of the Counties of England. Worcestershire, vol.IV. London 1924, 180-83.
N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England. Worcestershire. Harmondsworth 1968, 15, 45, 46, 244-55.