Derbyshire Places of Worship

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St Michael's Church, Kirk Langley
St Michael's Church,
Church Lane,
Kirk Langley, Derbyshire.


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 before 1300, and we understand it is still open.

Kelly's Directory of 1932 describes St Michael's Church as "an edifice of stone, consisting of chancel, clerestoried nave, aisles, and a low embattled western tower containing 3 bells, dated 1693, 1629 and 1679". By far the greatest part of the present fabric is of the Early Decorated style (1300-20), when the church was evidently rebuilt throughout. The nave is divided from the aisles by arcades of three pointed arches, supported on octagonal piers, and communicates with the chancel by a Pointed arch on octagonal shafts, and with the tower by a similar arch resting on 3 corbels. The chancel retains three sedilia, of good character and a piscina, and in the south wall is an aumbry. One of the sedilia was formerly open and formed a doorway to a vestry, erected in 1824 by Godfrey Meynell, but now removed. The north aisle is lighted by five Pointed windows, the corresponding windows in the south aisle being mostly debased, as also are those of the clerestory.

The church was much injured by a tempest on June 20th, 1545. Various repairs, involving the destruction of much ancient and beautiful woodwork, were made in 1839. In 1840 the church was repewed and a gallery erected on the south side at a cost of £600. There is a piscina at the east end of each aisle and a hagioscope within the doorway of the old rood-loft stairs and another on the north side. The remains of the ancient rood-loft are at the west end of the church. During the repewing, various abbey tokens of bronze, and a large number of encaustic tiles, with the inscription "Sce Mich", were found; the latter are now placed in the south aisle or Twyford quire.

There is an altar-tomb with incised figures of an armoured knight and his lady, and a marginal inscription to Henry Pole and Dorothy his wife (1558). In the north aisle is an alabaster slab with the figure of a lady in a close-fitting dress and angular cap: the inscription, much defaced, commemorates Alice, widow of Thomas Beresford, of Newton Grange (1512). In the chancel are numerous memorials to the Meynells (1667-1854), to the Rev. Charles Wilmot (1724) and to William Cant (1789), successive rectors of this parish, as well as a son of the latter. The altar and reredos in the Meynell chapel were erected as a memorial to the late Mr. and Mrs. Godfrey Meynell by their children.

The church was extensively restored in 1884-5 during the rectorship of the Rev. F.W. Meynell, and in 1893 a new vestry was built. The restoration of the chancel was completed in 1916 by the erection of carved oak choir stalls. A stained window and a brass plate were erected in memory of the men connected with this parish who fell in the Great War, 1914-1918, and several other windows are stained, including one in the chancel erected to the memory of the late W. Goodall-Copestake esq. by his wife. The register of baptisms dates from 1655, of marriages from 1656, and of burials from 1654. In 1932, the living was a rectory, held since 1922 by the Rev. William Meynell Leeke M.A. of Trinity College, Cambridge.

Meynell Langley was described as a hamlet, and an ancient manor, which had been owned by the family of Meynell since 1110. The current lord, of both manors, was Brig.-Gen Godfrey Meynell C.M.G. J.P.

The British Listed Buildings website lists several properties in the parish, including St Michael's Church, Langley Barton, Langley Hall, Langley House, the Meynell Arms Hotel, and Meynell Langley ("small country house, late 18th century).


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 SK2864138853. 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 Kirk Langley, 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 19 Nov 2013 at 16:06.

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Further Information

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This Report was created 29 Nov 2023 - 02:40:14 GMT from information held in the Derbyshire section of the Places of Worship Database. This was last updated on 13 Oct 2021 at 14:33.

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