Gloucestershire Places of Worship

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Colston's School Chapel (Private), Stapleton
Colston's School Chapel (Private),
Bell Hill, BS16 1BJ,
Stapleton, Gloucestershire.


We believe the Chapel does NOT have a graveyard.

Note: any church within an urban environment may have had its graveyard closed after the Burial Act of 1853. Any new church built after that is unlikely to have had a graveyard at all.

Church History

This Place of Worship was founded in 1861, and we understand it is still open.

Colston's School was founded by Edward Colston in 1707/8, in a property known as "The Great House", in St Augustine's Place. "Colston, by dint of higgling, obtained the mansion for £1,300, and the conversion to its new purpose was begun in August, 1707", and "a school for thirty boys was opened in August, 1709".

So says John Latimer, in his The Annals of Bristol in the Eighteenth Century (1893). Members of the Merchant Venturers were appointed Trustees, and in Annals of Bristol in the Nineteenth Century (1887), Latimer describes the move to Stapleton, then on the outskirts of Bristol:

"At a meeting of the Merchant Venturers' Society on the 18th September [1858], it was determined - subject to the approval of the Charity Commissioners - to purchase the vacated bishop's palace at Stapleton, and to convert the building into a school-house for the boys of Colston's School... Stapleton house and grounds were then acquired for £12,000. The Merchants' Society paid half of this amount, taking the land not required for the school. A large dining room and master's house were added to the premises, which underwent the needful modifications to fit them for the reception of 140 boys (an addition of twenty to the previous number) at a cost of £3,000. The scholars were removed to their new abode on the 21st October, 1861."

Stapleton House - later the Bishop's Palace - had been purchased in 1840 for the Bishop of Bristol and Gloucester, James Henry Monk. It was built around 1725, and in 1840, had been the residence of Isaac Elton, Esq. Bishop Monk died in 1856, and the property lay empty in the intervening 2 years.

The Chapel, rebuilt in 1933, was originally the Bishop's private chapel, but was taken over by the school for daily services. The tradition continues in the present day, when "the school community is supported by a full-time Lay Chaplain and a part-time Anglican Priest in charge of the adjoining Parish Church".

See also Colston's School on Wikipedia, where there is a sketch of the school, published in Bristol Past and Present (J.F. Nicholls, & John Taylor, 1882)


Now or formerly School/College Chapel.

If more than one congregation has worshipped here, or its congregation has united with others, in most cases this will record its original dedication.


This Chapel is located at OS grid reference ST6155075876. You can see this on various mapping systems. Note all links open in a new window:


I have found many websites of use whilst compiling the information for this database. Here are some which deserve mention as being of special interest for Stapleton, and perhaps to Local History and Places of Worship as a whole.

The above links were selected and reviewed at the time I prepared the information, but please be aware their content may vary, or disappear entirely. These factors are outside my control.

Information last updated on 4 Feb 2014 at 12:16.

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Further Information

This site provides historical information about churches, other places of worship and cemeteries. It has no affiliation with the churches or congregations themselves, nor is it intended to provide a means to find places of worship in the present day.

Please also remember that whilst the above account may suggest that Colston's School Chapel (Private) remains open and accessible, this may not remain so.

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This Report was created 29 Aug 2021 - 17:50:32 BST from information held in the Gloucestershire section of the Places of Worship Database. This was last updated on 27 Mar 2021 at 10:54.

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