Gloucestershire Places of Worship

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Church of St Mary the Virgin, Poulton
Church of St Mary the Virgin,
Poulton Priory,
Poulton, Gloucestershire.


This Church 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 1347, but we understand it was closed in 1874.

St Mary's Priory at Poulton owes its foundation to Sir Thomas de Sancto Mauro (Seymour), lord of the manor of Poulton. He endowed a chantry chapel in the existing 12th century church of St Michael, and in 1348 built a separate chapel for five chaplains. In 1350, however, an agreement between Seymour and the King resulted in the majority of the manor, and the advowson of Poulton being granted to the Priors and Canons of Sempringham (the Gilbertines). They founded the Priory of St Mary, adopting the chapel of 1348 as its priory church.

There are indications that the original 12th century building was going out of use as far back as 1389, when Alice Seymour was granted licence to remove the remains of her ancestors from the parish church to the priory church. The priory itself was surrendered at the Dissolution, but became the parish church, dedicated to St Mary, and remained as such until a new church was built in 1873, closer to the village settlement to the north.

According to Kelly's Directory of 1923 St Mary's was pulled down "in consequence of its dilapidated condition", though its lack of proximity to the village must also have been a factor in the decision. The only remains to survive now of the old church are a 14th century arch, incorporated into a wall at Priory Farm, and its burial ground, containing a large collection of chest tombs and headstones dating from the later 17th century. Only a few tombs remain in situ, however, as most of the grave markers and headstones have been removed to the edges of the churchyard.

Names on the tombs, recorded on the British Listed Buildings website, are Thomas & Anne Page, John Tipper, George Higgon, John Page; Thomas Eldridge, David Moulder, John Howse; William Lane, Charlotte Higgon, Sarah Lane; William Tipper, John & Sarah Coleman, and Arthur Hood.

The present "Poulton Priory" mansion was erected in 1897 by James Joicey esq. J.P. close to the site of the old Priory buildings. [Other Sources: Kelly's Directory (1923), and the entry for Poulton Priory in the Historic England database PastScape]


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 was located at OS grid reference SP0951500066. 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 Poulton, 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 15 Nov 2018 at 11:16.

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This Report was created 5 Jul 2022 - 07:35:07 BST from information held in the Gloucestershire section of the Places of Worship Database. This was last updated on 13 Oct 2021 at 14:13.

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