Gloucestershire Places of Worship

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Copyright of John Williams
St Oswald's Priory (Ruins), Gloucester
St Oswald's Priory (Ruins),
Priory Road,
Gloucester, 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 890, but we understand it was closed in 1538.

Now in ruins, St Oswald's Priory is Gloucester's oldest standing building. It was dedicated as "a house of secular canons to St Peter" in AD 890, and stood close to the royal palace of the Saxon Kings, after which the area of Kingsholm is named. It was rededicated to St Oswald in AD 909 by Æthelflæd, daughter of Alfred the Great, when she and her husband Æthelred, Lord of Mercia, "after a daring raid into Viking territory", brought the remains of St Oswald, the martyred King of Northumbria, from Bardney in Lincolnshire to rest here. St Oswald's is often cited as the burial place of both of its founders, alongside the remains of St Oswald. There is a fragment of one of the three tombs in Gloucester Museum.

The priory was remodelled in the 12th century, but after the Dissolution it was largely demolished, except for one aisle, which in 1548 became the parish church of St Catherine. This was however damaged by royalist artillery during the Siege of Gloucester; and consequently in 1653, the City Council ordered its demolition - "showing remarkable thrift they used the stones to build a new market building".

The site's full title, as displayed on it information notice board is "St Oswald's Anglo-Saxon Minster and Medieval Priory". There was formerly a graveyard, and today, a few stones and memorial slabs still remain in situ. [Sources: the British Listed Buildings website, and Religious Heritage (in 2010) on Gloucester City Council website]


Now or formerly Augustinian.

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 SO8304019007. 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 Gloucester, 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 10 Nov 2018 at 15:38.

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This Report was created 6 Dec 2023 - 18:07:49 GMT 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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