3 BERE REGIS (8494)
(O.S. 6 ins. aSY 88 NE, bSY 89 SW, cSY 89 NW, dSY 89 SE, eSY 89 NE)
The very large parish of Bere Regis covering 8,312
acres lies 10 m. E.N.E. of Dorchester on the N. edge of
the S. Dorset heathland. The whole of the S. half of
the parish is rolling heathland, over Bagshot Beds,
lying between 50 ft. and 200 ft. above O.D., across
which the river Frome cuts obliquely from N.W. to
S.E. The middle part is largely occupied by Reading
Beds and London Clay which give rise to extensive
woodland. The N. part of the parish is on Chalk rising
to just over 300 ft. above O.D. and in places cut into
by dry valleys draining into the Milborne Brook, which
crosses this part of the parish to join the Piddle in the
The parish was, until recently, much larger and
included the old settlement of Milborne Stileham and
its land to the N., now incorporated within Milborne
St. Andrew parish.
St John's Church, Bere Regis: Architectural Development
(The position and size of the openings, excepting of those that survive, the width of the S. aisle and the plan of the chancel
prior to the 15th century are conjectural.)
There appear to have been three original settlements
within the parish, Shitterton, Bere Regis itself and
Doddings Farm, all along the Milborne Brook on the
edge of the Chalk outcrop. Late settlements to the S.
of the original nuclei took the form of small farms on
the heathland, all along the Piddle. These, such as
Chamberlayne's Farm, Hyde House, Philliols Farm and
Stockley Farms, are all first recorded in the mid 13th
to mid 14th centuries.
Bere Regis was always by far the most important
settlement, perhaps as a result of its royal connection
(Hutchins I, 136), and it was made into a free borough
by Edward I. It remained for long an important market
town, though severe fires in the 17th, 18th and 19th
centuries have left it with no domestic buildings older
than c. 1600. Many of the 17th and 18th-century
houses in the village were built as small farmhouses,
the lands of which lay in open fields on the Chalk to
the N.; the latter were not enclosed until 1846
(Enclosure Map and Award, in D.C.R.O.; see also Map
of Bere Regis, 1775, D.C.R.O.).
The parish church and the hill-fort on Woodbury
Hill are the principal monuments. The site of the royal
house built by King John has not been identified.
b(1) The Parish Church of St. John the Baptist
stands in the village. The walls are of various materials,
Portland and Purbeck stone ashlar in the chancel, flint,
limestone rubble and squared Portland with some rough
alternate coursing in the nave and N. aisle, flint with
lacing-courses of carstone and brick in the S. aisle, and
predominantly flint and Portland stone in chequer
pattern in the W. tower. The roofs are covered with
stone slates and with lead.
Enough evidence survives to show that the present
building incorporates the remains in situ of a cruciform
church of c. 1050: these comprise the E. bay of the N.
wall of the Nave, containing an archway, subsequently
reformed, which opened into a N. transept, and possibly
the N. and S. extremities of the E. wall of the nave. In
c. 1100 altar recesses were formed flanking the earlier
chancel arch; of these, the base of the S. respond of the
S. recess alone remains. In c. 1160 the nave was enlarged
by rebuilding the S. wall somewhat further to the S.;
included in the new S. wall was an arcade, which
survives, opening to an added S. aisle. The old S.
transept though thus truncated was in all probability
retained. In c. 1200 an arcade of three bays, which also
survives, opening to an added N. aisle, was formed in
the N. wall of the nave of c. 1050, the wall co-extensive
with it being entirely rebuilt. At much the same time
the arches of the S. arcade, above the capitals, were
rebuilt. In the early 13th century the old opening
between the nave and the N. transept was reformed
and thereafter the nave and aisles were extended one
bay to the W. In the 14th century the standing North
and South Aisles were completely rebuilt wider, the
width of the N. aisle presumably being made uniform
with the depth of the older N. transept. The previous
truncation of the S. transept precluded similar uniformity
on the S.; this transept was therefore demolished and the
space included in the new aisle, an enlarged archway
being formed in eastward extension of the S. nave
arcade of c. 1160. At the same time the chancel arch
During the 15th century a notable improvement of
the church was begun. Money for the repair of the
Chancel was being collected in 1450 and soon thereafter
it was completely rebuilt. The upper parts of the nave
walls were rebuilt to contain clearstorey windows and
by c. 1500 the nave roof was framed and the West
Tower built. Cardinal Morton by his will proved in
1500 founded a chantry in the church for twenty years,
and for it doubtless the old N. transept was rebuilt, for
this end of the N. aisle is by tradition the Morton
Chapel; the rebuilding provided an E. bay uniform
with the rest of the N. aisle in place of the lofty and no
doubt archaic early transept. The E. end of the S. aisle is
traditionally the Turberville Chapel; John Turberville
by his will of 1535 desired to be buried 'in my own aisle
before the image of Our Blessed Lady, in one of the
tombs wherein Sir Richard and Sir Robert Turberville
my ancestors hath been buried'. He also directed that
the E. window of the aisle be newly made and newly
glazed as soon after his death as convenient: no doubt
the elaborate 16th-century E. window in the S. wall is
the outcome (Plate 32). In 1760 the more easterly end
of the S. aisle was badly burned and in part rebuilt in
flint with brick lacing-courses.
The South Porch was rebuilt in 1875. At this time the
church was very extensively restored at a cost of some
£7000 by Messrs. Hale and Son of Salisbury under the
direction of G. E. Street, R.A.; the clerk of works was
J. Redden. The 15th-century tracery of the reset late
13th-century E. window was removed and new tracery
inserted; the wall over the S. nave arcade was rebuilt,
the tilting piers and arches being levered back to the
vertical, and the greater part of the N. and W. walls of
the N. aisle were reconstructed, retaining the old
features. The E. end wall of the S. aisle was in part
rebuilt, incorporating a new window in the 14th-century
style in replacement of one of five four-centred and
transomed lights in a square head of the 16th century;
the nave and S. aisle floors, which had been raised level
with that of the N. aisle in 1830, were again lowered;
the nave roof was repaired; the chancel, S. aisle and
tower roofs were renewed, and extensive alterations
were made in the fittings. (A copy of G. E. Street's plan
of the church, showing the rebuilding proposed, and
photographs before and during restoration are in the
Commission's archives together with miscellaneous
correspondence, early guides, etc. See also Hutchins I,
150–4; British Arch. Assocn. Journ., XXVIII (1872),
289–95, 400–1; Building News, 21 May 1869, 22 October
1875, 30 April 1909; Dorset Procs. VIII (1887), 49;
E. Venables, Historical Sketch of Bere Regis, etc. (Dorchester, 1882).)
Bere Regis church is of some note architecturally and
of interest for an involved structural development
extending from the mid 11th century to modern times.
The tower is among the more imposing late Gothic
towers in the county; the nave roof of c. 1500 is remarkable, and the early 16th-century recessed canopied table-tombs belong to an interesting group of locally made
monuments that had a wide distribution.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (32½ ft. by 17 ft.)
has a chamfered plinth and diagonal buttresses in two stages.
The gable of the E. wall is a modern rebuilding; it has a stone
coping. The N. and S. walls finish in simple eaves. The
tracery of the three-light E. window is of 1875 but the reset
jambs, mullions, chamfered rear arch and moulded label with
head-stops of a man and a woman are of the late 13th century;
internally the splays and mullions have engaged shafts with
moulded capitals and bases. In the N. wall are three late
15th-century windows each of three cinque-foiled lights with
vertical tracery in a two-centred head with a moulded label
finished with head-stops and with a hollow-chamfered rear
arch; the westernmost reveal has been in part cut back for a
squint from the Morton Chapel. The S. wall contains three
windows similar to those opposite, also with the westernmost
reveal cut back for a squint, and a late 15th-century doorway
with a moulded two-centred head enriched with paterae; the
mouldings are continued down the jambs to chamfered stops;
the label has carved head-stops. Of the two squints, the N. is
roughly cut and of indeterminate date; the S., probably in
part of the 14th and in part of the 15th century, has a chamfered
half-arch to the E. and, to the W., a wide 14th-century
opening with a two-centred chamfered head and jambs fitted
with a plain mediaeval wrought-iron grille. The 14th-century
chancel arch has been partly rebuilt with some of the old
material, probably in the 15th century; it is two-centred and
of two chamfered orders; the inner order dies out into the
responds, the outer butts into them with the chamfer continuing down to restored chamfered plinths. On the W.,
between the S. respond and the opening to the S. squint are
the mutilated remains of a small respond-shaft with a moulded
base; reset above it is a moulded voussoir with lozenge-diaper
enrichment; the first, of c. 1100, no doubt is part of an altar
recess that flanked a narrow earlier chancel arch. Over the
chancel arch, seen from outside, is the weathering of an earlier
roof to the chancel; the cross on the gable end above is the
only one not renewed in 1875 though the gable itself was
Bere Regis, the Parish Church of Saint John the Baptist
The Nave (58 ft. by 20 ft.) has the arches in the N. wall
standing at the N. aisle floor level which is 1¼ ft. above the
nave floor. The wall of the E. bay is thicker than the rest of the
wall westward and on a different alignment; it is of c. 1050,
in part refaced towards the nave in the mid 12th century, and
contains an early 13th-century arched opening with hollow-chamfered imposts continued to the break back to the thinner
wall further W.; the arch is two-centred and of two chamfered
orders; both orders evidently became deformed but only the
inner has since been rebuilt true; the dressings are insertions
and the whole probably represents a remodelling of an earlier
feature. Over the E. haunch is a rectangular doorway to
the rood stair. The first three bays of the arcade of c. 1200
further to the W. have two-centred arches with two plain
orders on the S. and flush faces on the N. carried respectively
on a chamfered corbel on the E. respond, two circular piers
with plain moulded capitals and restored bases and, on the
W., a rectangular chamfered pier with chamfered impost. The
W. half of this last pier was formed and faced in the 13th
century when the further bay was added; in this last the arch
is two-centred and of two chamfered orders springing from a
W. respond with a chamfered impost partly buried in the
tower wall. The five windows of the clearstorey differ in date:
the easternmost is of c. 1500, of two four-centred lights in a
square head; the rest, of the late 15th century, have each two
trefoiled lights in a square moulded head with moulded jambs
and a flat rear arch. The E. bay of the S. arcade contains a
14th-century two-centred arch of two chamfered orders
dying out into the flush wall-face between nave and S. aisle
on the E. and springing from a renewed circular pier on the
W.; the retooled capital of the pier, decorated with paterae
and heater-shaped shields each charged with a cross, is a base
reused and inverted. The next three bays have two-centred
arches of two orders with a chevron-enriched label on the
N. and with a flush face and chamfered label on the S.; the
piers are circular, the second and third having mid 12th-century chamfered abaci and capitals carved with drapery-like
scalloping and grotesque figures and heads, including those of
a king, a man holding his head, a hound baiting a bear, and a
monkey, bringing the square of the abacus to the round of the
pier (Plate 7). The bases, including the base of the first pier,
are moulded and with rounded spurs on square stepped and
chamfered sub-bases with chevron ornament. The fourth
pier is circular and the E. half is of the mid 12th century with a
scalloped capital while the W. half is of the 13th century with
a plain capital. The 13th-century arch in the fifth bay is two-centred, of two chamfered orders, and the W. respond is
half-round with a moulded capital and modern base. The five
clearstorey windows are similar to the more westerly in the
The Morton Chapel and North Aisle (13 ft. wide) are without
structural division and entered up two steps from the nave.
The chapel occupies one bay and is an early 16th-century
rebuilding of the earlier transept; the ashlar bonding at the
junction of the former W. wall of the transept and the nave
wall remains visible in the latter at clearstorey level. The
chapel has a double plinth, a diagonal buttress on the N.E. and
a modern buttress at the junction with the N. aisle; in the
external angle between the E. wall and the chancel is the two-sided projection of the 16th-century rood stair. The restored
E. window is of three four-centred lights in a square casementmoulded head with moulded jambs; the N. window is similar
to it. The N. aisle is without plinth or buttresses; in the N.
wall are three reset late 15th-century windows each of three
cinque-foiled lights in a square casement-moulded head with
moulded jambs. The reset 14th-century N. doorway, between
the second and third windows, has a restored two-centred
head with the mouldings continued down the jambs to plain
stops; the rear arch is triangular and chamfered. The reset late
15th-century W. window is of three trefoiled lights with
vertical tracery in a triangular head, head and jambs being
casement-moulded; below the window and to the S. is some
earlier walling and the sill of a blocked 13th-century lancet
window. Along the S. wall over the nave arcade are the shaped
corbels of an earlier roof.
The South Aisle (16 ft. wide) has had the whole of the upper
part of the E. wall rebuilt, and the E. window with net tracery
is entirely late 19th-century. The upper part of the 14th-century S. wall has been rebuilt in flint with brick courses,
the easternmost of the three short two-stage buttresses having
the initials and date MS 1760. The E. window in the S. wall
(Plate 32) is of the 16th century, probably c. 1535, and has five
ogee cinque-foiled lights with two whole and two part quatrefoils in the tracery all in a three-centred opening in a square
head with blank shields and ribands in the spandrels; the
square moulded label has stops carved with demi-angels, much
worn. The elliptical rear arch and splays are elaborated with
rectangular, quatre-foiled and trefoiled panels. Further W. is a
partly destroyed 18th-century doorway in brick, now blocked,
with segmental head. The reset second window is of the 14th
century with three ogee-trefoiled lights and net tracery in a
two-centred head with a two-centred and chamfered rear
arch. The third and the W. windows are late 19th-century.
The rebuilt 14th-century S. doorway is two-centred with the
mouldings of the head continued down the jambs to shaped
stops; the rear arch is two-centred and chamfered.
The West Tower (13 ft. by 12 ft.) is of c. 1500 and in three
stages (Plate 2) with a moulded plinth, moulded strings, two-stage inset angle buttresses ending in tall pinnacled standards,
and an embattled parapet with crocketed pinnacles and
gargoyles. The polygonal stair turret at the N.W. angle rises
above the parapet and has engaged standards with pinnacles
standing on the topmost string at the free corners and smaller
pinnacles on the plain parapet. The moulded tower arch is
two-centred and springs from shafted responds, the soffit and
reveals containing heights of paired panels with trefoiled heads.
In the N. wall is the doorway to the stair, with a four-centred
chamfered head. The W. doorway has moulded jambs and a
four-centred arch in a square head with foliate spandrels;
flanking the doorway are plain standards set diagonally supporting a capping continued as a label and a string. The
restored W. window has four transomed lights with a large
centre mullion and vertical tracery in a two-centred head, all
within a continuous casement moulding; the heads of the
lights below the transom are trefoiled, above cinque-foiled; the
moulded label returns across the other faces of the tower as a
string. Flanking the window are two niches with corbels
carved with angels holding blank shields; their moulded
standards carry crocketed canopies and pinnacles. The second
stage has in the N. wall an original window of one four-centred light in a square casement-moulded head; inside, the
clock chamber is entered through a doorway with an original
stop-chamfered timber frame. The third stage has in each face
a three-light double-transomed window with blind tracery in
a four-centred head within a continuous casement moulding;
the lights below both transoms have elliptical heads, the others
are ogee, and the two upper heights are filled with pierced
stone panelling with quatrefoil and star-pattern openings; the
lower lights are blocked. The moulded labels have human and
beast-head stops, some defaced, and the rear arches are
The South Porch (10¼ ft. by 12½ ft.), of early 16th-century
origin, has been rebuilt; the S. archway and the windows in
the E. and W. walls are of the late 19th century.
The Roof of the chancel is of 1875; the design is said to have
been based on fragments of a mediaeval roof found in situ.
The late 15th-century timber roof of the nave (Plates 68, 69)
is in five bays divided and flanked by tie beams with arched
braces meeting in the centre and springing from hammer
beams with curved struts that continue the lines of the braces
to give the appearance of two-centred arched supports to the
ties; the struts and wall posts stand on shaped stone corbels;
standing on the tie beams are king posts, queen posts and two
subsidiary side posts with cusped struts supporting the ridge
and the four purlins respectively. The trusses are elaborately
enriched, with tracery and foiled infilling in the spandrels and
trefoiled cusping along the under side of the braces and struts.
At the junctions of the braces are large bosses crudely carved
with (1) foliage, (2) male head, (3) shield with a modern or
restored painting of the arms of Morton, (4) Tudor rose,
(5) knot, (6) shield of St. George. The ends of the hammer
beams are carved with full-length figures, probably of the
Apostles but so many of the attributes are broken away that
only five are perhaps identifiable: N. side, (1) St. Matthew,
(3) St. Philip (?); S. side, (3) St. James the Great, (4) St. Peter,
(6) St. James the Less. Midway between the trusses are secondary principals with bosses at the intersections with ridge and
purlins carved with human heads and foliage. In 1875 the roof
was extensively repaired, renewals being carved by Harry
Hems of Exeter, and regilded and recoloured by Messrs.
Clayton and Bell (R.C.H.M. archives). The colouring has
been renewed again in the present century. The Morton
Chapel retains the original roof of c. 1500 with intersecting
moulded beams and wall-plates forming four panels. The
restored late 15th-century lean-to roof of the N. aisle is in
five bays divided by moulded principals supported on stone
corbels and supporting moulded purlins. The roofs of the S.
aisle and the tower are of 1875. (A.R.D.)
Fittings—Altar: In chancel, Purbeck marble slab with two
incised crosses and part of a third, the lower edge hollow-chamfered, mediaeval, repaired and set on modern base to
form main altar. Bells: six; 2nd, 1656, probably by Thomas
Purdue; 4th by John Wallis of Salisbury, 1602; 5th by Thomas
and William Knight, 1709; 6th by Clement Tosier, 1698, and
given by Mary Dyet. Brackets etc.: In nave—on E. wall, N. of
chancel arch at about springing-level, shaped stone corbel,
probably for back of rood loft; on N. and S. walls at the same
level as the foregoing and one bay W., probably for the front
bressummer of the rood loft, two carved corbels, the N.
defaced, the S. with the carved figure of a man with large
head wearing close-fitting round cap and pleated gown with
shoulder-cape, c. 1400. In Morton Chapel—flanking E. window, at different levels, and differing slightly in detail, two
half-octagonal moulded stone corbels with concave sides and
flared stems, c. 1500; on E. splay of N. window, moulded
stone corbel supported by flying angel, c. 1500. Brasses and
Indents. Brasses: in N. aisle—on N. wall, (1) to Andrew Loup,
1637, reset triangular-headed plate with long Latin inscription
and shield-of-arms of Loup; (2) to [Henry] Fisher ,
small, finely engraved with emblems of mortality. In S. aisle,
(3) to Robert Turbervyle, 1559, plate with black-letter inscription (now reset on E. wall). See also Monuments (1, 5). Indents:
in W. tower—in floor-slabs, (1) of rectangular plate; (2) of
inscription plate and shield, c. 1500, the slab with illegible
black-letter inscription; (3) of figure and inscription plate,
c. 1500, much worn. See also Monuments (2, 4, 5).
Chairs: In chancel, two, made up with 15th-century linenfold panelling and mediaeval and modern material. Chest: In
N. aisle, of wood, 3 ft. 2 ins. long, panelled and inscribed with
names of churchwardens and date 1716. Clock: Works (Plate
5), now in D.C.M., with elaborate wrought-iron frame,
made by Lawrence Boyce of Piddletown, 1719. Consecration
Cross: In nave, on W. face of E. respond of N. arcade, painted
on plaster in red outlined in black, 13th-century. Font (Plate
8): In W. tower, circular straight-sided bowl with shallow
carved decoration, partly hacked away, of interlacing round-headed arches with open flowers in roundels above, moulded
necking, 12th-century, on late 19th-century stem and moulded
base; in top of bowl the remains of fastenings for a cover.
Ironwork: see Architectural Description, Chancel.
Monuments and Floor-slabs. Monuments: In chancel—against
N. wall, (1) to John Skerne, , freestone table-tomb
(Plate 14) with brasses and canopy erected by Margaret
(Thornhull) his wife in 1596, tomb-chest with moulded plinth
and square-panelled front and ends, the panels containing
blank shields enclosed in sub-cusped quatrefoils, the top slab
with moulded edges and remains of wrought-iron guard and
carrying two reeded and fluted columns and half-column
responds supporting the canopy and continued up as corner-posts with knob finials; the back wall divided by pilaster
buttresses into three bays containing brasses, in the middle
an achievement-of-arms of Skerne impaling Thornhull (Fig.
p. 16) with a separate inscription below, in the W. the kneeling
figure of a man in civilian dress, and in the E. a woman; the
canopy with a cornice decorated with quatrefoils and blind
brattishing and a soffit (Plate 15) with unusual decoration
including enriched bosses, a quatrefoil, and diapered panels
enclosing star-shaped sinkings (cf. Church Knowle parish
church, Monument 1). In N. aisle—on N. wall, (2) mutilated
reset fragments of a stone monument similar to (4) comprising
the canopy with the traceried soffit set flush and the three
wall-panels with brass indents of a kneeling figure of a knight
wearing a tabard and with a scroll, inscription plate and
smaller plate (probably a Trinity), and of a shield in each side
panel, 16th-century, first half; (3) to Robert, , son of
John Williams of Herringston, and Maria (Argenton) his wife,
, wall-monument of painted clunch erected by L W
(probably his son, Lewis Williams) in 1631, consisting of a
gilded inscription panel flanked by attached Tuscan columns
supporting a cornice and pyramidal strapwork composition
framing a shield of the quarterly arms of Williams, De La
Lynde, Herring, Syward, all impaling Argenton. In S. aisle—
in E. wall, (4) canopied tomb of Purbeck marble with brass
indents, the front with quatre-foiled panels, now almost entirely
defaced, and moulded capping supporting part-octagonal
attached shafts carrying the canopy; the back wall slightly
recessed, with trefoil-headed panels in the reveals, and containing partly defaced brass indents of two kneeling figures
of a man and wife, an inscription plate below and a scroll
between them, and flanking shields; the canopy with a band
of quatrefoils across the front and blind brattishing, the soffit
carved with a central boss of fan-pattern flanked by elaborate
tracery-work, 16th-century, first half, much decayed; in S.
wall, (5) Purbeck marble tomb of similar type to (1) and (4)
above, the front containing blank shields, that in the centre
having had an applied brass shield, framed in sub-cusped
quatrefoils in square traceried panels alternating with narrower
trefoil-headed panels and with spirally-moulded shafts at each
end; the recess above with flanking spirally-turned shafts and
panelled reveals, the E. reveal containing a small recess with
cinque-foiled ogee head and bracket; the back wall divided
into three compartments, with brass indents of a Trinity
flanked by kneeling figures of a knight and wife with scrolls
and of an inscription panel below; the front of the canopy
decorated with a band of quatrefoils and blind brattishing, the
soffit (Plate 15) with two bosses and elaborately carved tracery,
16th-century, first half; (6) tomb recess, E. springer only of
arch surviving, with pierced cusp, probably 14th-century;
(7) in wall-recess, tomb with plain front and Purbeck top
slab with chamfered under-edge, recess with septfoiled elliptical arch under an ogee label, this last much defaced, the foils
with sunk spandrels, 14th-century. In W. tower—on S. wall,
(8) to Harvey Ekins, 1799, and M. Elizabeth his widow, 1806,
white and grey marble wall-monument with fluted side
pilasters, urn and blank shield; (9) of Harvey Ekins Lillington,
a great-nephew of Harvey Ekins (see foregoing), 1819, white
and black marble wall-tablet. Outside—on N. wall of chancel,
(10) to John Wills, vicar, 1725/6, white marble wall-tablet on
foliated corbel, erected by his wife Maria. In churchyard—E.
of chancel, (11) to John, son of John and Elizabeth Stanly,
1701/2, and another, name concealed, headstone; N. of church,
(12) to Jasper Guy, 1695, headstone; (13) to David Guy, 1695,
headstone; (14) to Mary and Abis, daughters of William and
Mary Whelch, 1704, headstone; S. of church, (15) to John,
son of Thomas and Anna Boscomb, 1713, headstone; (16) to
Jonathan Burges, 1682, headstone; (17) to Joy, son of James
Burges, 1676, headstone; (18) to Andrew Sexey, 1691, carved
headstone; (19) to Samuel Rutter, 1722, carved headstone;
(20) foot-stone inscribed WT.ET.TS. 1695. 1699.
Floor-slabs: In chancel—two modern floor-tiles, marking the
position of floor-slabs beneath concealed in 1875, inscribed
(1) RW, 1631, (Robert, second son of John Williams of
Herringston) and MW, 1630, (Mary (Argenton) his wife), and
(2) GA, 1701, (Gulielmus Abell, A.M., vicar). In nave, in second
bay of N. arcade, (3) to Thomas . . . ., 1608, with black-letter
inscription, largely illegible. In S. aisle—(4) to John Turberville
of 'Beere' and Woolbridge and Ann (Howard) his wife,
daughter of Thomas, Viscount Bindon, 1633; (5) over the
Turberville vault, dated 1710. In W. tower, (6) with traces of
black-letter inscription, illegible. See also Brass Indent (2).
Niches: see Architectural Description of W. Tower. Panelling: In N. aisle—on N. wall, towards W. end, six arcaded
panels with strapwork and jewel-ornament, possibly of former
pulpit, and some plain panels in moulded framing, 17th-century, reset; reused in screen to vestry, eight linenfold
panels, early 16th-century. Piscinae: In chancel—in S. wall,
with moulded cinque-foiled head and jambs and stone shelf,
front edge of sill shaped into two three-sided projections
carried on pair of moulded and ribbed corbels, E. half containing foiled dishing to drain, mid 14th-century. In S. aisle—
in S. wall, with ogee cinque-foiled chamfered head and jambs,
sill cut back and foiled sinking and drain partly destroyed,
late 15th-century. Plate: includes cup by I.G., 6½ ins. high, with
straight tapered sides on plain flared stem, 1664; stand-paten
by D.B., 9 ins. diam., with gadroon border, 1693, engraved
with achievement-of-arms of Williams of Herringston;
smaller stand-paten by C.O., 6½ ins. diam., of similar design,
1698; stand-paten, 47/8 ins. diam. bought in 1876 but older;
two flagons with straight tapering sides and scrolled handles,
1811 and 1812, given by the vicar, Thomas Williams; straight-sided pewter flagon, 17th-century.
Seating: In nave, thirteen bench ends (Plate 67) incorporated
in backs of modern pews, elaborately carved with tracerypatterns and linenfolds incorporating initials, H B and R C,
shield with date 1547, others with pelican in piety, merchant's
mark with initials HAC, and inscription: ION DAV WARDEN OF
THYS CHARYS (Figs. pp. 18, 188).
Sundial: reset in E. buttress of S. aisle, fragment of scratch
dial, mediaeval. Tables: in vestry, of yew, with shaped legs
and hoof-shaped feet, given by Henry Fisher, vicar 1725–73.
In S. aisle, with turned and twisted legs and stretchers and
shaped bearers to plain top, early 18th-century. Miscellanea:
Carved stones—in S. wall of S. porch, carved voussoir similar
to that in E. wall of nave (see Architectural Description above),
mid 12th-century; built into N. aisle, fragments of moulded
and carved stones including small delicately carved foliated
capital of c. 1200; in S. arcade, two stone heads; in S. porch,
fragments of two coffin-lids with Calvary crosses, part of
plain stone cross, and small Purbeck marble slab decorated
with quatrefoils. On outside of N. aisle, 16th-century moulded
stone fragment with shield-of-arms (unidentified 1). Over S.
door, two firemen's wrought-iron thatch-hooks, with chains
but no staves, 17th or 18th-century.
Bere Regis Church. Seating; bench-end.
The following houses unless otherwise described are
of two storeys with cob walls and thatched roofs; the
barns are of similar building materials.
West Street (see village plan)
b(2) House, of brick with a tiled roof, was built in the late
18th century. Two bay windows were added on the S. in the
b(3) House, of two storeys and attics, with brick walls,
rendered and painted, and a tiled roof, was built in the second
half of the 18th century. The back wing is a later addition.
b(4) House was built in the early 17th century; on plan it
has a central chimney and two rooms.
b(5) House, of two storeys and attics, built of brick with
tiled roofs with stone verges, is of the early 18th century. The
front originally had two ground-floor windows and a doorway on the W., a brick plinth, a plat-band marking the first
floor and an eaves cornice of headers set on edge and alternately
glazed. The two first-floor windows flank a rectangular sunk
brick panel. The end gables have moulded brick copings and
kneelers. The plan (below) comprises a side passage, a large
front room with a small room opening from it E. of the stairs,
and a N. kitchen wing; but there is nothing to show that
the passage is an original feature, and the purpose of the small
room is uncertain. About the middle of the 19th century a
bay window was added in place of the ground-floor windows.
b(6) Cottage, of brick with a thatched roof, is of the early
19th century. It has a symmetrical elevation with a central
b(7) House with shop was built in the early 19th century.
It has a brick plinth and, towards the E. end, a separate shopentrance.
c(8) Cottages, two, were built probably in the 18th century; the E. cottage has been refaced in brickwork.
Parish of Bere Regis: Houses in West Street
c(9) House was built in the early 18th century. The plan
(below) comprises a central staircase with the principal room
to the E. and the kitchen to the W. Behind the staircase is a
small room of uncertain purpose. The porch, of two storeys
and of brick with a tiled and gabled roof, was added probably
c. 1800. Part of the back wall has been rebuilt in brick and
outhouses have been added.
Bere Regis, Plan showing the Position of the Monuments
b(10) 'Royal Oak', public house, at the S.W. corner of
the cross roads, of two storeys and attics, is of the early 19th
century. It is built of brick, the N. and E. sides being in blue
headers with red dressings; the roofs are tiled. The N. side
has a central doorway flanked by two three-light windows,
three similar windows on the first floor and three dormer
windows with hipped roofs.
b(11) House, of brickwork in Flemish bond with blue
headers, is of the late 18th century. The plan comprises two
rooms, each with a fireplace in the gable wall, and a straight
staircase between them.
b(12) House is probably of the 17th century. It was renovated and sash windows were inserted towards the end of the
18th century, when, probably, a small Barn at the E. end was
b(13) House, of two storeys and with a back wing of one
storey, was built of brick in Flemish bond about the middle
of the 18th century. The E. ground-floor window on the N.
side has a segmental head of alternate red and blue headers. The
plan (see p. 18) is L-shaped, comprising two main rooms,
which were probably a parlour to the W. and a kitchen. The
absence of a doorway between the E. room and the back wing
suggests that the latter served some farm purpose, perhaps as a
dairy. In the second quarter of the 19th century a general
renovation included the addition of an entrance lobby, a bay
window and a back porch. Perhaps at this time the fireplace
with an oven on one side was inserted in the back wing,
though the wing remained perhaps a bakehouse and brew-house rather than a kitchen. On the first floor the W. room
has an original fireplace-surround with eared architrave and
b(14) Manor Farm, house, of brick with a tiled roof, is of
the first half of the 18th century. The brickwork is in English
bond with blue headers.
b(15) House, with a slated roof, was built probably in the
18th century. It has been converted into two cottages and
greatly altered. A Barn to the E., of the 17th century, retained
a single post forming the foot of a scarfed-cruck truss until
b(16) and (17) Barns have brick plinths and are both of the
early 19th century, although not of exactly the same date.
They are comparatively small, of four bays, and have large
opposed doors without porches. (Demolished)
b(18) Cottage is of the late 18th century. The E. wall is
of brickwork in Flemish bond with blue headers.
North Street (see village plan)
b(19) House was built in the late 17th or early 18th century
when it must have had a range of three rooms, the middle one
unheated. It was greatly altered towards the middle of the
b(20) House is probably of the 17th century. It has been
partly refaced in brick and altered inside.
b(21) House is of the early 17th century and consists of a
range of three rooms. The chimney-stack stands between two
rooms and to the side of it is the entrance lobby. The house has
been much altered.
b(22) Houses, two, of rendered brick, with slated roofs,
were built as a pair towards the middle of the 19th century.
They have symmetrical elevations.
b(23) House was built in the late 16th or early 17th century
when the plan comprised two rooms each with a fireplace in
the gable wall. It has been extended on two sides in the 18th
and 19th centuries.
b(24) House, of one storey and attics, is of similar plan and
date to (23). A third room was added to the N. in the early
18th century and a Cottage at the S. end in the early 19th
b(25) Cottage, of brick with a tiled roof, was built
probably at the end of the 18th century.
b(26) Cottages, a pair, of brick with tiled roofs with stone
slate verges, were built in the late 18th century. They share a
common doorway in a symmetrical frontage.
b(27) Cottages, two, one double-fronted, are of the late
c(28) Cottages, two, were formed in the 19th century
in a late 18th-century range of stabling.
c(29) House, on Barrow Hill, of brick with a slated roof,
is of the first half of the 18th century; it is said to have been
the schoolmaster's house and may well have been built about
the time that the adjacent school was founded in 1719. The
brickwork is in Flemish bond with blue headers and a platband marking the first floor. The original plan comprised two
rooms. Entrance was through a porch and lobby to one side
of the central chimney. The house has been divided and
altered. The school has been rebuilt with the original date
c(30) Cottages, on the E. side of Butt Lane, form a range
of five with a sixth, detached, to the S. They are of the 18th
and early 19th centuries.
c(31) Cottage, on Snow Hill, is early Victorian.
b(32) House, in Blind Street, is of the 17th century but has
been extensively altered at several different dates.
b(33) Court Farm, house, S.E. of the church, is L-shaped
on plan. The oldest part is the S. end of the W. wing, which is
of the late 17th or early 18th century; it is of rubble with a
tiled roof, the window heads are turned in brick and the S.
gable has a moulded coping and parapet. The mid 18th-century N. end of the wing is of brick. The brick E. wing
with a symmetrical S. front was added in the early 19th
century. The wings now form two separate houses. The plan
of the E. wing comprises a lobby facing a straight flight of
stairs between living room and kitchen; the S. wing was
altered to a similar plan in the 19th century.
b(34) House (841949) is of one storey with attics; it was
built of flint with lacing-courses of squared stone in the late
16th century. The S.W. end of the front wall has been rebuilt,
perhaps in cob, probably in the early 19th century; the S.W.
gable wall was rebuilt in rubble at some uncertain date, and
the back wall patched in brick in the 18th century. A cottage
was added on the N.E. end in the late 18th century. The
16th-century plan consists of a range of three rooms. In the
S.W. room, which has pyramidal stops to the chamfered
longitudinal ceiling beams, a small 19th-century fireplace
replaces the much larger original; the N.E. room still has a
large fireplace. The room in the middle is of some pretensions,
since it has chamfered and stopped ceiling beams, though
without a fireplace; it appears to have been an unusually
elaborate entrance hall.
c(35) House (840950), of one storey and attics, was built in
the 17th century on a plan comprising two heated rooms.
c(36) Shitterton Farm, house (839950), of two storeys
and attics, was built in brick in the early 18th century. The
only decorative feature of that date to survive is a plat-band on
the S. wall of the N. range, which is continued in slightly
different brickwork on the W. wall of the S. wing. The plan
comprised an entrance, now blocked, opposite the staircase,
a room to each side and a smaller unheated room behind the
staircase. The house seems always to have had a wing to the
S. because the wall between the N. range and the wing is
thinner than the outside walls, though the lack of openings in
the said wall suggests the wing was a dairy or brewhouse
rather than a kitchen. In the middle of the 19th century the
wing was extended, the addition being of one storey and
attics, a porch added, and the whole house given new windows,
doors and fireplaces. A Barn, of brick with slated roof, stands
W. of the house and is of the early 18th century.
Bere Regis: Shitterton Farm
b(37) Cottage, immediately W. of (34), is of the early
c(38) House, 40 yds. E.S.E. of (35), of two storeys and
attics and of brick with a slated roof, was built in the late 18th
c(39) Cottage, immediately W. of (35), is of the early
b(40) House (340 yds. S.) has a slated roof and symmetrical
front; it is early Victorian. Three Cottages immediately
adjacent may be of the same date.
b(41) Barn (300 yds. S.), of the late 18th century, has
opposed doors towards the S. end. The collar-beam roof trusses
are bolted together and the common rafters are untrimmed
d(42) House (855947), of brick with a tiled roof, stands
near the W. rampart of the hill-fort and is of the late 18th
d(43) Cottages, three, respectively 150 yds. N.E., 60 yds.
E., and 110 yds. S.E. of (42), of brick with tiled roofs, are of
the late 18th or early 19th century.
c(44) Roke Farm, house (834960), of two storeys and of
brick with a thatched roof, was built in the late 18th century
on an L-shaped plan. It was considerably altered in the 19th
century. Barn, 30 yds. S. of the farmhouse, of brick with a
thatched roof, was built probably in the middle of the 18th
century. The brickwork bonding is in two courses of stretchers
alternating with one course of headers. The N.E. side and the
N.W. end, that is, the walls seen from the house, have a high
plinth. All the buttresses have stepped offsets. The roof is
divided into eleven bays by tie and collar-beam trusses.
c(45) Roke Barn (822964) has timber-framed and weather-boarded walls above a high brick plinth. It was built in the
mid 18th century. The timber used for the wall studs is of
poor quality and small scantling; long curved braces rise from
the sill to the principal posts. The roof (p. lxv), of sling-brace
type in seven bays, has a few pegged joints but is mostly
fastened together with wrought-iron straps.
Most of the following buildings stand in the meander
valley of the river Piddle.
b(46) Cottages, a pair (550 yds. S.), have slated roofs and
are of the early 19th century.
b(47) Cottage (845938) is of the early 19th century. The
plan comprises two heated rooms.
b(48) Cottage (845937) is of the early 19th century and
has an entrance hall between two heated rooms.
b(49) Cottage (849926), of one storey and attics, is of the
late 18th century. The plan comprised a living room and
scullery, with a staircase on the S. side of the fireplace in the
former. Both the original doorways are now blocked.
b(50) Cottage, immediately S. of (49), is of the early 19th
century. It has a staircase and two heated rooms opening off a
b(51) Culeaze Farm, house (849922), of brick and cob
and now with a slated roof, was built in 1715. The back wall
is of cob and the other walls are of brick. The date is worked
in glazed headers in the N. gable. The W. front is symmetrical.
The plan comprises an entrance lobby with a kitchen to the
S., a parlour to the N., and a staircase between the lobby and
an unheated room behind, which was probably a pantry
entered from the kitchen. The staircase is enclosed except on
the first-floor landing, where are flat shaped balusters.
d(52) Cottage (854914), at Warren, is of the late 18th
century. The original plan comprised a living room and
scullery; it has been much altered and partly rebuilt.
d(53) Warren House (856912) has a tiled roof. It was
built in the 17th century but enlarged in brick in the early
d(54) Snatford Cottage (855928) is of the late 18th
century. The plan comprises a living room and scullery.
d(55) Cottage (853929) is of the early 19th century.
d(56) Cottages, a pair (854927), of brick, were built in
the early 19th century. They have a central chimney-stack.
d(57) Cottage (856924), at Bere Heath Farm, is of the early
d(58) Lower Stockley Farm, house (857919), of brick
with a tiled roof, was built in the late 18th century. The
brickwork of the N. side is in Flemish bond and that of the
S. side in English garden-wall bond. The doorway has a flat
hood on moulded brackets. Many of the original windows are
d(59) Barn (863916), at Philliols Farm, is of brick and
roofed with modern materials replacing thatch. In the W.
gable the date 1748 is worked in glazed headers. The single
porch is on the S. side (plan, p. lxvi). The Stable, immediately
N. of the barn, is of brick with a tiled roof. It is of the 18th
century. The roof trusses have principal rafters and cambered
collars. The 18th-century Granary, E. of the barn, is of brick.
d(60) Bere Lodge (868913), of brick with slated roofs, is
of the early 19th century, octagonal, and with a timber
verandah. The windows have round heads.
d(61) Barn (864908), at Woodlands, is of brick with a
slated roof. It was built in the second half of the 18th century
and has stepped buttresses. The N. end has been converted
into a cottage.
d(62) Cottage (869906), at Hyde Farm, was built of brick
with a tiled roof in the late 18th century and heightened in the
a(63) Cottage (872894), at Budden's Farm, of brick with
tiled roofs, is of the late 18th century. Barn (plan p. lxvi) is
also of the 18th century and of brick, with stepped buttresses.
b(64) Cottage (839932), at Mintern's Ferry, is of the early
e(65) House (⅓ m. N.E.), at Town's End, of brick with
tiled roofs, is of the late 18th century. The N. wall contains
many glazed headers. Barn, S.E. of the house, is of cob with a
slated roof. It was built in the early 19th century.
(66) Long Barrow, p. 431.
(67–116) Round Barrows, p. 435.
(117) Mounds, p. 481.
(118) Woodbury, hill-fort, p. 485.
(119) Linear Dyke, p. 517.
(120–121) Roman Remains, p. 594.
Ancient Field Groups (30–32), p. 632.
Bere Regis Church. Seating.