Gloucestershire Places of Worship

St Peter's Church, Ampney St Peter (1) (55k) St Peter's Church, Ampney St Peter (2) (31k) St Peter's Church, Ampney St Peter (3) (49k) Above Photograph(s)
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St Peter's Church, Ampney St Peter
St Peter's Church,
Ampney St Peter Village,
Ampney St Peter, Gloucestershire.


This Church has (or had) 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 the Saxon period, and we understand it is still open.

St Peter's is an ancient church with a late Saxon foundation. It has a nave of two bays, chancel, and low saddleback tower, to which a north aisle and vestry were added at the time of its restoration by Sir George Gilbert Scott, in 1878.

Many of the houses in Ampney St Peter village appear to be old. One of the houses on the road leading to the church has a sundial.

The following information about the Church has been provided to accompany the photographs on the right. A list of people who have supplied the information is included in the Acknowledgements, below.

[Image 1] Is this a delightful little church, or is this a delightful little church?

The church dates back to Saxon times, but the Normans rebuilt it, leaving just the Saxon arch of the tower, and one wall of the nave, which has a single deep window, a blocked-up doorway, and the usual mass of rough masonry. There are two carved ‘sheila-na-gig’ figures, one on the outer wall of the nave, and another inside, which Arthur Mee's Gloucestershire describes as “a queer little woman with a smiling face bigger than her body, which is cut short at the knees”.

The same source tells us the Normans built the Chancel, the font is 15th century and the reredos is modern. There are traces of red (wall) painting in a recess near the chancel. The church has three sundials, one on the tower and two older ones scratched on the stones. Two stones on the tower are engraved with ancient crosses, and there are the remains of an old cross in the churchyard.

Whilst the porch with the castellations enhances the church's impression of uniqueness, in relation to the rest of the church it must be (relatively) modern. Mee doesn't mention it, but it seems likely to me it's medieval.[1]

[Image 2] What date the Sheila-na-gig figure on the north wall of the nave (must be reset surely from outside?) by the 16th century font or the modern-looking-but-maybe not seated figure of St Peter in the chancel?[2]

[Image 3] St Peter's merges with its village and hard to spot, its small tower barely rising above the roof of the nave and somewhat dwarfed by the large 19th century north aisle. The lower part of the tower and the nave in fact are late Saxon work, almost 1000 years old but apart from the tower arch inside without surviving features.[2]


Now or formerly Church of England.

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 Church is located at OS grid reference SP0818601517. You can see this on various mapping systems. Note all links open in a new window:


A special thanks to the following people who have contributed information for this web page:

1. Information provided by Rosemary Lockie.

2. Information provided by Phil Draper.

Information last updated on 20 Feb 2013 at 13:17.

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This Report was created 28 Sep 2021 - 16:47:59 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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