Chimney: Church

Page 86

A History of the County of Oxford: Volume 13, Bampton Hundred (Part One). Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1996.

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A chapel of St. James was mentioned in 1575, when it was sold as a 'cottage'. (fn. 1) No earlier references have been found, and there is no evidence to link the chapel to Chimney's Anglo-Saxon burial ground. (fn. 2) In the 1630s Robert Veysey (d. 1635) was accused of profaning the chapel, suggesting that it still served some ecclesiastical function, and in 1657 a 50year-old deponent remembered hearing the epistles, gospels, and Lord's Prayer read there; another recalled it being used as a school, however, and in 1634 Veysey asserted that it had been used for c. 70 years as a church house for Whitsun ales, claiming further to have rebuilt it in the early 1620s after Chimney's inhabitants refused to meet the cost. (fn. 3) In the late 1650s it was reportedly used for impounding cattle, and was demolished perhaps in 1758 and certainly by 1789. (fn. 4) Its site, said in 1657 to be 'near' the Veyseys' manor house, is unidentified; the remains of 'Chapel Barn', west of modern Chimney Farm, are not identifiably medieval. (fn. 5)


  • 1. P.R.O., C 66/1125, m. 23.
  • 2. Above, intro.
  • 3. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1635-6, 113; P.R.O., E 134/1656- 7/Hil. 20, m. 3 and d.; D. & C. Exeter, MS. 1998.
  • 4. P.R.O., E 134/1656-7/Hil. 20, m. 2; Bodl. MS. Top. Oxon. d 218, f. 41; D. & C. Exeter, MS. 4544; ibid. MS. M 1.
  • 5. P.R.O., E 134/1656-7/Hil. 20, mm. 2d.-4; Oxoniensia, liv. 48, 50.