Sapperton St Kenelms Church

Jan Leeming

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Jan's Blog

Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.

SAPPERTON - St. Kenelm's Church

Date: 4th June 2015


Last week I attended a Memorial service for an old friend. Held at St. Kenelm’s Church, Sapperton, it was a joyous occasion and very much a celebration of a good life - some tears but much laughter and love.

The Church itself is fascinating and one has stood on the site as early as 1090 though there is almost nothing left of its Norman past. There’s some beautiful Jacobean panelling - totally inappropriate for a Church but Hey! Apparently the 1st Earl Bathurst bought Sapperton Manor House in 1730 and immediately had it torn down so that he could have himself built a far more ‘fashionable’ abode. However rather than destroy the beautiful panelling, he donated it to the Church - and there it stands adorning the ends of pews and showing several carved figures in a state of undress!!

Do look it up on the Internet if you have any interest at all in old churches. Although small, the right hand or East wall of the south side of the Transept is totally dominated by the most massive tomb to a Sir Robert Atkyns - it is so large it looks as though it had been designed for Gloucester Cathedral and not a simple parish church. It was of particular interest to me because my maiden name was Atkins. In the old days, so many clerics and others were semi-literate that all manner of spellings came about for the most simple of names. On my maternal Grandmother’s side, over the centuries the name has been spelled Pettit, Petit, Pettet, Pettyt etc. and so forth. So maybe Sir Robert is a distance ancestor - must look into it.

Equally impressive and nearly as large is a tomb to the Poole Family which dominates the North side of the transept.

In the Churchyard - incidentally it’s full! - there are four of the most enormous Yew trees I’ve ever encountered. The local Ringwould Church in Kent has a lone larger one but it is hollow and obviously clinging onto life by it’s finger-roots. The ones at Sapperton looked to be solid and very healthy.

One of the most informative and best illustrated links to Sapperton is this one

Sapperton, St Kenelm's Church - Britain Express

SAPPERTON - St. Kenelm's Church

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