Derbyshire Places of Worship

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St Mary the Virgin's Church, Beighton
St Mary the Virgin's Church,
Church Lane, S20 1EJ,
Beighton, 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 about 1150, and we understand it is still open.

Kelly's Directory of 1932 describes Beighton as a village and parish, "most pleasantly situated on an eminence on the Yorkshire border", with a station on the main line of the London and North Eastern railway, 4 miles north from Eckington station and 2 south from Woodhouse Mill station on the London, Midland and Scottish railway, 10 north-east from Chesterfield and 6 south-east from Sheffield. The approach to the village from Eckington is through a cutting in the solid rock.

The church of St Mary is "an ancient building of stone in the Early English and Perpendicular styles, consisting of chancel, nave, aisles, south porch and western tower containing 6 bells". A clock was erected in the tower in 1921, as a memorial to the parishioners who gave their lives in the Great War, 1914-1918. There are several stained windows and sittings for 310 persons.

Kelly doesn't say when it was founded, but a Wikipedia article on the Church of St Mary the Virgin, Beighton suggests around 1150, "based on the discovery of a disintegrating late Norman semi-circular chancel arch which was unearthed during late 19th century repair work". It also records that at the time of its first documented mention, in the reign of Edward I, it was dedicated to St Radegund, who came from Thuringia (now a federal state of Germany), and "as late as 1557 there was a mention of 'the churche yard of V(ir)gyn Radegond at Beghton'".

The return to the Religious Census of 1851 (HO 129/509/1/1/1) records it as the "Parish Church, St Mary", with "from 350 to 400" sittings, and an estimated congregation on March 30th of 164 in the morning, and 128 in the afternoon. The return was completed by Thomas Erskine, Vicar, of "Beighton Vicarage, Sheffield".

The parish records date from 1653, and (in 1932) were said to be in good condition. The living was then a vicarage, in the gift of the Bishop of Derby, and had been held since 1932 by the Rev. Paul Basil Honeybourne Ashwin, M.A. of Jesus College, Cambridge. It may be of interest to note that in 1895 the living had been held by the lord of the manor, Earl Manvers, and in 1912 by the Bishop of Southwell. Earl Manvers was also responsible for the erection of a parish room and Sunday School in either 1892 (Kelly 1932) or 1903 (Kelly 1912). Both are in agreement that a new vicarage was built in 1900, though probably not by Manvers.

The parish contains the hamlets of Hackenthorpe, 1½ miles east, Birley, 2½ miles east, and Sothall Waterthorpe, ½ mile east. The whole was transferred to the City of Sheffield in 1967, and to the diocese of Sheffield in 1974, by which time it included Frecheville. The parish records are held by Sheffield Archives.


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 SK4427583366. 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 Beighton, 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 3 Dec 2018 at 08:59.

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Further Information

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This Report was created 9 Dec 2023 - 17:46:37 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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