Gloucestershire Places of Worship

We have 1 Image St James's Church, Bream Above Photograph(s)
Copyright of Alf Beard
St James's Church, Bream
St James's Church,
Coleford Road, GL15 6ES,
Bream, Gloucestershire.


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 16th century, and we understand it is still open.

Bream was created an ecclesiastical parish in 1854, from the parish of Newland, and West Dean township. Its nearest railway station at the time of Kelly's Directory of 1923 was Whitecroft.

St James's Church was, according to the Religious Census of 1851 (HO 129/577/1/1/1), "an Old Chapel, but nearly Re-built in the year 1824", with the note that it was re-consecrated April 1st 1825. The average number to attend afternoon services was 200, with 70 Sunday Scholars. There were no morning or evening services. The return was completed by Henry Poole, its Minister, whose postal address was Parkend, near Lydney.

It was again rebuilt in 1860-1, to a design by William White, and according to Kelly, chiefly at the cost of Miss Alice Davies. It is "a building of stone in the Decorated style, consisting of chance, nave of four bays, north aisle, south porch and a western turret containing 1 bell". Mike Salter, in his booklet Parish Churches of The Forest of Dean (1990) describes the interior in more detail, commenting that the four-bay arcade in the north aisle has marble columns with big foliage capitals. He also points out that the bell-cote is unusually positioned, on the south west corner, and that the piscina in the chancel is "a relic of the church that existed here in the 16th century", thus indicating even earlier origins for the building.

Hence, this building has undergone many changes. In 1904, the south porch was rebuilt, a new window inserted, and the chancel aisle erected, vestry enlarged and seats re-arranged; and it was again re-seated in 1904. In more recent times, the Church's website tells us that as a consequence of a fire in the 1980s, the interior of the church was again restructured - there are now no pews, and the seating which is provided is easily movable.

There is a large graveyard surrounding the Church.

In the present day, Bream Church website has some useful information, including details of a new Church Centre, construction of which began in July 2017. This replaced their previous building, the former Mount Zion Chapel, which was purchased by St James's PCC in the early 1990s, to become "Eaves Christian Centre". It has since been sold to be converted into residential occupation.

There may be more information available by by selecting one or more of the accompanying images on the right.


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 SO6008005500. 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 Bream, 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 25 Jan 2019 at 07:31.

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Further Information

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This Report was created 5 Jul 2022 - 22:31:43 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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