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Wiltshire Community History

Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew

St Andrew's Church has stood from the 12th century and had been dedicated to St. Andrew before 1240.Walls in the north east corner of the nave may be from an earlier late 11th or early 12th century church.

In the 14th century the chancel was remodelled and a south transept erected. The north aisle, porch and tower were built. In the 15th century new windows were put into the chancel and south transept. The 17th century saw a west gallery created and new windows above the west doorway and in the south wall of the nave.

During the 19th century the south transept and porch were replaced by the south aisle and a new porch. The Reverend Dansey refurbished the chancel c.1833. He was rector from 1820-1856 and he started the village school. The chancel was rebuilt in 1838 and 15th century glass was reset in the east window. Mr N. Tate drew the plans for restoration in 1875 when the piers of the nave arcades were restored, the west gallery was removed, an organ chamber was placed above the vestry, and an arch was inserted into the nave. There is a carved face of Christ supporting the springing of the arch at the west end of the church, his eyes gaze towards the altar, and there are medieval carved angels on either side of the nave. The tower was rebuilt by J. A. Reeve in c.1895.

A wall tablet commemorates Captain John Cooke whose ship took Bonaparte to St. Helena and who died at the battle of Trafalgar. He lived at Donhead Lodge.

A millennium window was created at the west end of the church, by Henry Haig, depicting the baptism of fire and the Holy Spirit.

The church plate left in 1553 was a chalice weighing 13oz. New church plate, including a chalice, was given in the late 19th century.

The church had four bells in 1553. More recently the church contained the treble cast by William Cockey in the early 18th century and recast in 1953. The second was cast in 1613 by John Wallis and the third is from the 15th century, possibly by John Walgrave. The tenor was recast in 1831.

The Royalist clergyman to hold the church was James Whitney, Rector from 1631-70. He was deposed by John Legg who had signed the Concurrent Testimony in 1648.
Matthew Bowles and William Bowles followed after from 1684-1781.

Bowles recorded the events of the Protestant succession of William and Mary in 1688 in the parish register:-
“Anno Domini1688
The Prince of Orange invaded England Nov ye 5th at Torbay near Dartmouth and marched from thense to Oxford and on to London (before Christmas Day) without opposition”.

On the next page he added: “The Crown was settled upon the Price and Princess of Orange by the convention of the Lords and Commons. And they were proclaimed King and Queen of England, France and Ireland in February 1668-9. They were crowned King and Queen of England on April 12th 1689 per consensum omnium ordanium totus Regim”.

One of the curates who assisted the rector was, in 1792, the poet and antiquary William Lisle Bowles.

William Dansey was rector from 1820-56 and was a historian who wrote 'Hoorae Decaniae Rurales', published in 1835.

St. Andrew's Church was united with the Rectory of Donhead St. Mary with Charlton to form a single benefice of the Donheads in 1980.

The parish register from 1645 (christenings) and 1657 marriages and burials, other than those in current use are held in the Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre at Chippenham.

Church Search Results

There were 7 items found.

Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew
Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew

Image Date: 2009
Image Location: Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre


Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew
Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew

Image Date: 2009
Image Location: Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre


Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew
Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew

Image Date: 2009
Image Location: Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre


Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew
Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew

Image Date: 2009
Image Location: Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre


Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew
Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew

Image Date: 2009
Image Location: Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre


Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew
Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew

Image Date: 2009
Image Location: Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre


Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew
Church of St. Andrew, Donhead St. Andrew

Image Date: 2009
Image Location: Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre


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