Herefordshire Places of Worship

St James's Church, Canon Frome (1) (35k) St James's Church, Canon Frome (2) (26k) St James's Church, Canon Frome (3) (34k) St James's Church, Canon Frome (4) (36k) St James's Church, Canon Frome (5) (30k) St James's Church, Canon Frome (6) (21k) St James's Church, Canon Frome (7) (49k) St James's Church, Canon Frome (8) (32k) Above Photograph(s)
Copyright of Rosemary Lockie
St James's Church, Canon Frome
St James's Church,
Canon Frome Court,
Canon Frome, Herefordshire.


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 12th century, and we understand it is still open.

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] Directly behind the Church in this photograph is Canon Frome Court, and access to the Church is via the drive to the Court. This grassy path in front of the Lych Gate looks to me as though it would have been the original entrance for villagers attending services, but there is no vehicular access in the present day.

This is the third church to be built on this site. The first church was built in the 12th century on land given to the Augustian Priory at Llanthony by the Lacey family. The guide leaflet suggests this church was probably built of timber, and lasted for around 400 years.

The story of how the Hopton family inherited the estate comes right of of Peter Bowles and Penelope Keith's TV series “To The Manor Born”! After the Dissolution of the Monasteries, it was bought by Richard HARFORD of Bosbury. When he died, his widow Martha leased it to Michael HOPTON of Hopton Hall near Ludlow, and susbsequently they were married.

During the Civil War, the Hoptons supported the Royalists, and the moated Manor House which Michael HOPTON and his new wife had built was beseiged. The medieval Church was demolished to help with its defence.

After the Civil War, Edward HOPTON and his wife Deborah returned from exile and began rebuilding. The new church was built of brick, which was very unusual in Herefordshire (or even anywhere?) However all that survives of it now is the tower, which dates from about 1680.

The building which we see today dates from 1860, when the Revd. John HOPTON, the 8th generation of Hoptons at Canon Frome instituted a rebuild. The architect was George Frederick Bodley, who was a pupil of George Gilbert Scott - Canon Frome was one of his first commissions.[1]

[Image 2] Please note the door handle for entry to this church turns upwards, not downwards. This information is provided in a leaflet ‘Churches on the Preedy Trail’, which I had picked up in Stretton Grandison Church, for which I was grateful, as otherwise, I would have assumed it was locked.[1]

[Image 3] The North Aisle contains the Memorials for members of the Hopton family, who were Lords of the Manor for 10 generations. The last family member of the direct line died in 1947.[1]

[Image 4] This magnificent Rose Window - at the east end of the North Aisle - depicts Christ in Majesty, surrounded by eight angels. It is the work of Clayton & Bell, a firm begun by these 2 young artists in 1855. Pevsner describes the glass as ‘outstanding’, but confesses not to know who could have done it, but the guide leaflet tells us.[1]

[Image 5] The outer walls are built of sandstone from Walsopthorne (nearby, to the south), but the windows and decoration are of Bath stone, which the guide leaflet suggests might have reached the church by the Hereford & Gloucester Canal, which borders the estate.[1]

[Image 6] This small lancet window, to the right of the Altar, depicts the refounding of Capel-y-ffin monastic community at Llanthony. The lancet to the left of the Altar depicts St James. The lancets are designs of Frederick Preedy (1820-1898) Another lancet, behind the door, portrays the Revd John Hopton, vicar of the parish for 62 years.[1]

[Image 7] The original East Window, by Clayton & Bell - depictng the crucifixion and resurrection was destroyed in 1934. In the present glass, the figure of Christ transcending crucifixion is flanked by figures of St Peter and St Paul.[1]

[Image 8] The Inscription reads:

Names of all those connected
with the Parish who gave their
services during the Great War

CaptainR.H. BASKERVILLEGlamorganshire Yeom.
 2nd. LieutS.V. KEELING1/4 Cheshire
 SergtC.W. SMITHR.A.F.
 Corpl.A.E. SMITHA.P.O. Section
 Lance Corpl.R. HOPKINSM.T. R.A.S.C.
*PrivateJ. ANCHOR1/7 Cheshire
 PrivateJ.M. BEVAN2/1 Herefordshire
PrivateS. BEVAN2/1 Herefordshire
*PrivateJ.E. COOKEK.S.L.I.
PrivateW.H. COOKE1st Herefordshire
 PrivateE. KITCHING2/1 Herefordshire
*PrivateT. PEART1/5 Gloucestershire
 PrivateH. POWISK.S.L.I.
*PrivateC. ROUSENth. Leicestershire
 PrivateJ. ROUSE19th Hussars
 PrivateW. ROUSE7th Welsh Regt
 PrivateE. ROSER.A.S.C.
 PrivateT. THORNE2/1 Herefordshire
PrivateG. THORNE2/1 Herefordhire
  † died.* wounded.


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 SO6449543463. 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 Canon Frome, 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.


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

1. Information provided by Rosemary Lockie.

2. Transcription provided by Rosemary Lockie.

Information last updated on 4 Oct 2010 at 00:00.

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This Report was created 11 Apr 2021 - 14:33:12 BST from information held in the Herefordshire section of the Places of Worship Database. This was last updated on 7 Feb 2019 at 13:34.

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