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THE ARTS SOCIETY
WYLYE VALLEY

Current Project

We are delighted once again that The Arts Society Wylye Valley has a Church Recording group.  We meet once a fortnight to record the delightful little church of St Andrew’s, Lower Bemerton.  Nowadays the church almost seems to sit in the middle of the road, but the earliest record of a chapel at Bemerton was in 1286.  It was rebuilt sometime around the end of the 14th century.  The much loved poet George Herbert took over the incumbency from1630-1633 and it is believed that he is buried under the floor of the chancel.  Herbert still has a large following and as we do our recording work we often meet visitors who have pilgrimaged to see his church. Historic, intimate and with a great atmosphere, this church is a wonderful project for our recording group led by Melissa Cordingley. Already we are finding out so much about the area and it’s history and piece by piece our jig-saw puzzle begins to fit together. 
 The result of our recording will be a beautiful and detailed book.  One copy is given to the church and other copies are sent to national and local archives, including Historic England in Swindon and the National Art Library at the Victoria and Albert Museum.

 


 

Previous Project 

A small group from Wylye Valley DFAS worked between 2010 and 2014 to record the furnishings of St Peter’s Church, Bramshaw, Hampshire. On Sunday 1st June 2014, a bound copy of the 126-page Record was given to the church and dedicated at the morning service. The photo shows group-leader Jane Coates and Team Rector Rev Frank Gimson holding the Record, together with the majority of the group and two local experts who had assisted with the recording, namely previous vicar Rev W H V Elliott on church history; Mrs Jill Robinson on textiles.

The church dates in part from the 12th century, with much rebuilding later. It is listed Grade II*. Standing on high ground above the B3079, it presents an unusual appearance to the passer-by, with the 13th century stone nave contrasted by the red-brick 19th century south transept and tower. Of the two bells in the tower (not accessible to the public), one dates from around 1220 and is thus one of the oldest in the country.

Inside there are a number of memorials and other interesting features. Amongst the memorials is one to seven local men (including three brothers) who were lost on the Titanic.