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St. Edwold Stockwood

A charming little church sitting next to a well-proportioned late 18c brick farmhouse, at the end of a farm drive.  At just 30 x 12 ft. it is the smallest in Dorset and probably one of the smallest in England.  Perhaps the most striking item externally is the pillared and domed bell turret.

Although there must have been an earlier building, most of the present structure dates from the 15c.  The porch was added in 1636. The font and altar rails are Victorian.  The 17c altar table came from Whitecombe, which, like this church, is also cared for by the Redundant Churches Fund.

St. Edwold was the younger brother of St. Edmund, the Anglian king murdered by the Danes in 870 AD.  Edwold was offered the crown, but preferring the hermit life, declined and eventually made his way to Dorset, settling in Cerne and, presumably, here.  Although very highly regarded, his stay in Dorset was to be short because he died after just one year and was buried in Cerne.  However, such was his prestige that when the monastery was rebuilt in 987, his remains were re-interred in the choir of the new building.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Trust gratefully acknowledges images and text by Robin Adeney ©

 

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