An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Dorset, Volume 5, East. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1975.
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8 HAMPRESTON (0598)
Hampreston, just over 5,000 acres in extent, occupies the N. bank of the R. Stour some 3 miles E. of Wimborne Minster. Apart from gravel terraces along the river, the whole area lies on Bagshot Beds and Bracklesham Beds, with extensive heathlands in the N. and E., at altitudes rarely exceeding 100 ft.; much of this land is occupied by modern houses. In 1895 a large area in the W. of Hampreston was allotted to the new parish of Colehill; more recently Hampreston has gained land in the E. from West Parley.
Originally there appear to have been three settlements: Little Canford, Hampreston and Longham, all situated near the R. Stour, on gravel terraces. Presumably each settlement had its own open field system, but everything except part of the open fields of Longham (Map of Hampreston Manor, 1786, photocopy in D.C.R.O.) had been enclosed by the late 18th century. The heathlands were enclosed early in the 19th century. (Enclosure Map and Award, 1813, D.C.R.O.)
(1) The Parish Church of All Saints, on the E. of Hampreston village, has walls of coursed Heathstone rubble with ashlar dressings and is roofed with tiles and stone-slates (Plate 2). The reset head of the N. doorway is evidence of a 12th-century church. The Chancel is of the first half of the 14th century and the West Tower is a little later. Drawings made in 1896 show that the Nave formerly had windows of 15th-century form; one of them, restored, remains more or less in situ. A former N. porch, removed in 1896, had been built in 1731; the South Vestry was added in 1823. In 1896 the church was extensively restored and the North Aisle, Organ Chamber and North Porch were added. Plans and elevations showing the church before restoration are with the Faculty Petition (Sarum Dioc. Regy., 1896).
Architectural Description— The Chancel has an early 15th-century E. window of three trefoil-headed lights with vertical tracery in a two-centred head. In the N. wall are two 14th-century windows, each of two cinquefoil-headed lights with a cusped spandrel light in a two-centred head, with heavy internal and external ovolo mouldings continuous on the jambs. A similar window reset in the E. wall of the organ chamber probably came from the W. bay of the N. wall. The S. wall has three corresponding windows, uniform with those on the N.; the easternmost, blocked up, has been made into sedilia; those on the W. have between them traces of a blocked doorway with a two-centred rear-arch. The voussoir of an arch of uncertain purpose seen beside the last-named doorway may be part of the head of a former aumbry. The vestry doorway of 1823 has a chamfered segmental head. The two-centred chancel arch was rebuilt in 1896; a photograph of the former, narrower arch is preserved in the church.
The N. arcade of the Nave is of 1896, and the S. wall was partly rebuilt at that time. The rood stair at the E. end of the S. wall has upper and lower doorways with chamfered two-centred heads and continuous jambs; the lower doorway has been restored. Adjacent is a 15th-century window of two cinquefoil-headed lights in a square-headed surround. The other S. windows, uniform with that described, are of 1896, but they incorporate mediaeval stonework.
Reset in the E. wall of the Organ Chamber is a restored 14th-century window uniform with the adjacent chancel windows. The trefoiled head and chamfered sill of a lancet window in the N. wall of the organ chamber were formerly in the N. wall of the nave; probably the opening is of 13th-century origin.
The North Aisle is of 1896, but the N. doorway incorporates the flat arch of a 12th-century doorway with joggled voussoirs forming a plain tympanum under a double-chamfered semicircular surround; it rests on moulded and hollow-chamfered abaci.
The West Tower is of the 14th century and of two stages; it has a moulded plinth, a weathered string-course and an embattled parapet with a moulded string and corner gargoyles. The buttresses are of three stages with weathered offsets. The tower arch is two-centred and of two chamfered orders, the inner order dying into the responds, the outer chamfer continuous. The W. window is of three trefoil-headed lights with quatrefoil tracery lights in a two-centred head. The upper stage has, in each wall, a belfry window of two cinquefoil-headed lights with a quatrefoil in a two-centred casement-moulded head under a label with head-stops; below the W. belfry window is a small rectangular loop.
Fittings— Bells: six; 1st modern; 2nd by William Knight, inscribed 'Tho I am but little and small my voice is heard before you all, WK BF 1738'; 3rd with 'H. Kelloway, I. Pitman CW, W. Foster Rect., WK BF 1738'; 4th, 1800; 5th with inscription as on 3rd; 6th recast, 1923. Chair: of oak with cane back and seat, turned uprights and enriched stretchers, mid 17th century. Communion Rails: with moulded rail and turned balusters, 18th century; finials later. Communion Table: with turned legs, late 17th century. Font: with octagonal Purbeck stone bowl on octagonal and cylindrical stem, polygonal base with marks for subsidiary shafts; probably 12th or 13th century, bowl recut in 15th century.
Monuments and Floor-slabs. Monuments: In chancel, on N., (1) of Edward Greathead, 1840, and Mary Elizabeth (Glyn), his wife, 1864, marble tablet with shield-of-arms, by Marshall of Blandford; (2) of Edward Greathead, 1803, marble tablet with urn finial and heraldic bracket, by Nollekens; (3) of Miles Bownes, rector, 1630, painted stone wall-monument with bust in architectural surround with Corinthian columns and entablature (Plate 16), painted on surround, shield-of-arms of Queen's College, Oxford, together with names of eight children; on S. wall, (4) of Elizabeth Lloyd, 1748, white stone and black marble wall-monument with pediment, scrolls and cherub-head bracket (Plate 17). In churchyard, 4 yds. N. of organ-chamber, (5) of Anne Clapcot, 1696, headstone laid flat. Floor-slabs: In chancel, (1) of Mary Anstey, 1677; (2) of Nicholas Anstey, 1676. In nave, (3) of Charles Caryll S.J., 1745; (4) of Richard Caryll S.J., 1750.
Niche: Externally, on N. wall of tower stair turret, recess with cinquefoil nodding ogee head between standards with male and female head-corbels. Plate: includes set of silver cup, flagon, alms-dish and two patens, all with assay marks of 1754, maker's mark of John Wirgman and donor's inscription of Frances White. Royal Arms: of George II painted on canvas, 1754. Seating: Reset in chancel, four oak benches with moulded tops and ends, probably 16th century. Sundial: On S.E. buttress of chancel, scratch-dial, mediaeval.
A tablet in the pediment bears the date 1841. Above, an octagonal clock turret is surmounted by a colonnaded bell-cote and a spire. The E. and W. elevations are of five bays with round-headed windows. The gabled N. elevation is masked by a later building.
(3) Chapel (05420032), Roman Catholic, in the Cistercian Abbey of the Holy Cross, was designed by Charles Hansom (Builder, June 12th, 1847) and was consecrated in 1851. Stainedglass windows were supplied by John Hardman in 1850.
(4) Longham Bridge (064973), carrying the road from Ringwood to Poole over the R. Stour, has eleven segmental brick arches above stone piers with cutwaters, stone spandrels and brick parapets (Plate 26). The present structure dates mainly from 1792 when Antony Sergeant of Wimborne Minster undertook to rebuild and widen the bridge for £899, but it is likely to incorporate some part of the 'good strong stone bridge of 13 arches' which John Wagg of Ringwood built in 1728–9 for £2,000 (Quarter Sessions records, D.C.R.O.). Before this, the bridge had been of timber.
(6) Manor Farm (04449993), house, of two storeys with brick walls and tiled roofs, dates from early in the 18th century. The N. front, symmetrical and of five bays, has a first-floor plat-band and a coved eaves cornice. The central doorway has a flat hood on shaped brackets; the sashed windows are uniform in both storeys. Interior joinery of good quality was brought c. 1949 from Langton House (see Dorset IV, 44), and the house has been extensively modernised.
(7) 'Stour Bank' (04659969), house, of two storeys with cob walls and slate-covered roofs, is probably of late 18th-century origin; it was remodelled c. 1825 when an elegant spiral staircase and other joinery of the period was introduced. The W. front is symmetrical and of three bays, with french windows opening on a veranda which retains elements of a concave lead roof.
(9) House (04619982), of two storeys with brick walls and a tiled roof, dates from the first half of the 18th century. The S. front is symmetrical and of five bays with a central doorway, and with plain sashed windows in each storey. The first-floor is marked by a plat-band; the eaves have a serrated brick cornice.
(16) Little Moors Farm (05399962), house, of two storeys with brick walls, partly rendered, and with tile-covered roofs, was built c. 1700. The rendered S. front is symmetrical and of three bays; the other elevations have brick plat-bands at first-floor level. Inside, the plan is of class T. The S.W. ground-floor room has bolection-moulded panelling. The stairs have close strings with moulded capping, stout turned balusters, square newel posts with ball finials and turned pendants, and moulded handrails. The principal rooms have fireplaces with bolection-moulded surrounds.
(17) House (05479879), now divided into two dwellings, is two-storeyed and has brick walls with stone dressings, and tiled roofs; it appears to be of late 17th or early 18th-century origin. The W. front has a brick plat-band and casement windows of three and of two square-headed lights in rebated and chamfered stone surrounds; some of these openings have been renewed and altered. The doorways are modern, but traces of an original doorway occur at the centre of the W. front, which at first was probably symmetrical and of five bays. The E. elevation seems also to have been originally symmetrical, with windows and plat-band as on the W., but it now is masked by a service wing and an additional chimney-stack. Inside, some chamfered beams are exposed. The original plan was of class T.
(18) House (05409884), of two storeys with attics, has brick walls and slate-covered roofs; it dates from early in the 18th century and originally had a class-T plan, but it has now been divided into two tenements. The E. front is symmetrical and of three bays with a central doorway and casement windows. A plat-band marks the level of the first floor.
(19) Longham House (06579806), of two storeys with brick walls and slate-covered roofs, was built mainly in the early 19th century, but the N. wing incorporates an earlier house, possibly of 18th-century origin. The 19th-century S. front is symmetrical and of seven bays, with a gabled central bay containing a round-headed doorway flanked by Tuscan columns supporting an openpediment hood; the lateral bays have plain sashed windows and a first-floor plat-band. Inside, the S. range has a class-T plan.
(20) Longham Farm (06599798), house, of two storeys with brick walls and tiled roofs, is mainly of the late 18th century. The W. front (Plate 50) is symmetrical and of five bays, with a round-headed central doorway flanked by columns which, no doubt, formerly supported a pedimented door-hood, now replaced by a pentice. The sashed windows have segmental brick heads with keystones. Inside, the plan is of class T, with a service wing on the S. set obliquely to the main range and perhaps remaining from an earlier house; the kitchen in the wing has an open fireplace with a stone surround.
(21) Home Farm (06619803), house, of two storeys with brick walls and tiled roofs, is of the mid 18th century. The symmetrical, five-bay W. front is built with blue bricks in header bond, with red brick chaînage. The square-headed central doorway has fluted pilasters and a Doric entablature with the cornice projecting to form a hood. The square-headed sashed windows have gauged brick arches with keystones. Inside, the plan is of class T, with a service wing on the E. The stairs have turned balusters.
(22) House (06519763), of two storeys with brick walls and a slate-covered roof, was built in 1767. The E. front, of two bays with an additional ground-floor window at the centre, is built largely in header-bonded red bricks, with blue bricks forming the inscription 'W 1767'. The casement windows have segmental heads. Inside, the plan is of class S, with a later extension on the W.
(24) Cottage (06539754), of one storey with attics, with timber-framed walls and thatched roofs, is of early 17th-century origin. A brick-built two-storeyed extension on the E. is of the late 18th century. In the original dwelling, which probably had a class-S plan, the parlour has a stop-chamfered beam resting on a wall-post with a shaped head.
(25) House (06379737), of two storeys with attics, with brick walls and tiled roofs, is of the early 18th century and originally had a class-T plan. The E. front, now of six bays with square-headed sashed windows in both storeys and with a doorway under a flat hood on shaped brackets, was originally of four bays, the southern bays having been added later in the 18th century. At the same time the doorway was moved from its early position in the second bay from the N. to its present position at the S. extremity of the original façade. Dormer windows in the original part of the building have recently been sealed up. Inside, the principal rooms have early 18th-century joinery.
(26) White Hart Inn (06599842), of two storeys with brick walls and tiled roofs, has the E. front of blue and red brickwork as in (22), suggesting that it too is of the third quarter of the 18th century. The interior has been entirely rebuilt.
(28) 'Hillamsland' (07079838), farm house, of two storeys with brick walls and a tiled roof, is of the early 17th century. The original range of the L-shaped plan, extending W.-E., is of class J; its entrance was on the S. About the middle of the 19th century a S. wing was added at the W. end of the range and the W. elevation then became the principal front; it has casement windows with four-centred heads in moulded stone surrounds with labels. The N. elevation retains original casement windows of two and three square-headed lights with ovolo-moulded timber surrounds. The original central chimney-stack has two diagonally set flues. Inside, the central and E. rooms of the 17th-century range have chamfered beams.
(31) Lawn Farm (07379960), house, of two storeys with brick walls and tiled roofs, is of the late 18th or early 19th century. The N.W. front is symmetrical and of three bays with segmental-headed openings; the eaves have a serrated brick cornice. The plan is of class T.
Mediaeval and Later Earthworks
At least fourteen barrows are scattered in the central part of the parish; they lie on the heathland of the Bagshot Beds, mostly just above the 100 ft. contour. One of them, possibly (36), was excavated in 1847 and yielded a cremation in an urn, probably of collared type (C.T.D., Pt. 2, No. 44; Hutchins, 438; Arch. J., CXIX (1962), 11).
Cremation cemeteries have been discovered in the same part of the parish. One found c. 1926 on Keeper's Hill, Stapehill (about 057999) appears to have contained several cremations in urns, now lost (Arch. J., CXIX (1962), 53). One found at Stapehill in 1934 comprised some fifteen cremations associated with one globular, two bucket and six barrel urns (Arch. J., CXIX (1962), 18, 52); the urns are now in Red House Museum, Christchurch. Although these cemeteries were in the vicinity of barrows they do not appear to have been directly associated with them. Other urnfields have been found in association with recently excavated barrows at Simon's Ground (36–40). A barrow recorded E. of Holmwood Park (about 07359880) has not been located (Dorset Barrows, 113; Hampreston No. 7).
Simon's Ground Group (36–40) comprises at least five barrows at the edge of a plateau, 100 ft. above O.D., overlooking lower ground to the S. Four barrows were excavated in 1967 and 1968 by Dr. D. A. White, to whom we are indebted for information which follows; (39) has not been excavated. Barrows formerly at about SU 06170005 and SZ 06379992 had been destroyed previously.
(36) Bowl (06240001), a small mound about 2 ft. high, was surrounded by a penannular ditch 4 ft. wide and 2½ ft. deep, with the causeway on the S.E. Beneath it no burial was found, but much charcoal and a central setting of four post-holes in a rectangle 3 ft. by 4½ ft., possibly the foundations of a 'mortuary house'. An urnfield of about one hundred vessels lay immediately outside the ditch on the S.
(37) Bowl (06290000), 60 yds. E.S.E. of (36), was a low mound surrounded by a ditch, 38 ft. across overall, the ditch causewayed on the S.E. Three urns which predate the construction of the barrow were found under the W. edge of the mound. Immediately outside the S. sector of the ditch nearly fifty urns were found, mostly in three groups and including a single urn within the arc of a shallow ditch open towards the main barrow.
(38) Bowl (06429987), 200 yds. S.E. of (37), comprised a low mound within a penannular ditch, with a causeway on the S.E. and measuring 35 ft. across overall. At the centre was a cremation burial in an urn; outside the ditch on the S. was an urnfield. A linear urnfield extended from near the causeway, N.E. to barrow (39). About ninety urns were found.
(40) Bowl (06499985), 40 yds. S.E. of (39), was a low mound beneath which were found a central cremation burial in an inverted urn and, beside it, a rectangular setting of four stake-holes; a penannular ditch, causewayed on the S.E., encircled the barrow. Adjacent on the S. was an urnfield containing forty vessels.