23 MORETON (8089)
(O.S. 6 ins. aSY 78 NE, bSY 79 SE, cSY 88 NW)
This parish, covering some 2,140 acres, lies 7 m. E.
of Dorchester on the S. side of the river Frome. It is
entirely on Bagshot Beds, overlaid in the N. half by
extensive river terraces. From the highest point in the
S.W. corner, at nearly 200 ft. above O.D., the land
slopes N.E. to the Frome and S.E. to its tributary
which forms the S.E. boundary of the parish. The
Bagshot Beds give rise to extensive heathland which in
the N.W. extends on the river terraces.
There appear to have been two original settlements,
Moreton itself and Hurst, both on the edge of the river
Frome. Hurst is not recorded as such until 1318, but
must be the smaller of the two Moretons described in
Domesday Book. The settlement on the edge of the
heath, W.N.W. of the village (Monuments 17–21),
was apparently a planned development of the late 18th
or early 19th century and was known as New Moreton
(O.S. 1 in., 1st ed. 1811).
The Frampton family, the owners of Moreton House,
have held the manor since the 14th century. The building
of two of the 18th-century houses in the parish (14, 27)
is recorded in their yearbooks (see p. 175, n).
The church and Moreton House, the only stone
buildings in the parish, are the principal monuments.
c(1) Parish Church of St. Magnus the Martyr
and St. Nicholas of Myra (Plate 112) stands at the
E. end of the village in Moreton Park. The walls are
of brick, faced with fine Portland stone ashlar, and
squared rubble, and the roofs are covered with stone,
slate and lead. A mediaeval church which stood on this
site consisted of nave and chancel, a S. tower and a
chapel to the E. of it. It was rebuilt by James Frampton
by 1776 with an apsidal Sanctuary and Nave, without
structural division between them, and, symmetrically
disposed on the S., a South-east Pew for the Framptons,
South Tower, and South-west Pew (now Vestry) for the
servants. The North Aisle is an addition of 1841 and
the West Porch of 1848. In 1842–3 new ribbed ceilings
were put in, and in 1847 new stone vaulting shafts
replaced earlier timber shafts; new fittings in 1847–8
included a carved reredos and encaustic floor tiles. The
church was badly damaged in the Second World War
and much of the N. aisle has been rebuilt. (C.W.
accounts; Frampton yearbooks s.a.)
The church is of interest as an example of late 18th-century work in the Gothic style, and the symmetrical
S. elevation is of some distinction; among the fittings
is a wall-monument by Vangelder with carving of
The Parish Church of Saint Nicholas of Myra, Moreton
Architectural Description—The Sanctuary is apsidal (10 ft.
radius). The walls are faced with ashlar and have a parapet
panelled with cusped roundels which is continued all round the
church. The five windows are of three lights with intersecting cusped tracery in two-centred heads which are linked
by a continuous label. Between the windows are shields
carved with impaling arms of Frampton. Internally the
sanctuary is divided into five sectors by attached wall-shafts
with moulded bases and foliate capitals from which spring
ribs to the ceiling. There is a stone dado of cinque-foiled ogee-headed arcading with carved spandrels and with a pierced
cresting of quatrefoils and paterae.
The Nave (39 ft. by 20 ft.) has a N. arcade of 1840 of three
bays with two-centred arches of three moulded orders; the
intermediate moulding is carried down the piers, the inner is
carried on attached shafts with moulded caps and bases, and the
outer springs from moulded imposts. Between the arches
attached wall-shafts rise the full height of the wall to carry the
ceiling ribs; these wall-shafts are repeated on the S. side of the
nave. In the S. wall the archways to the S.E. pew (Plate 113)
and the vestry are two-centred and of three orders, the intermediate order being continuous and the other orders springing
from engaged shafts. Between them the archway to the S.
tower is two-centred with a continuously moulded rear arch.
In the W. wall is a four-light window with label and shield
stops; the lower part was blocked in 1842 when a W. doorway
with a two-centred arch in a square head with traceried
spandrels was inserted. The Porch of 1848 has a horizontal
parapet and small windows to N. and S.
The North Aisle (38¾ ft. by 8 ft.) has been rebuilt with re-use of
some of the original material of 1840–1. The 19th-century
shield stops to the labels over the windows are carved with
impaling arms of Frampton, initials MF for Mary Frampton
and date 1841.
The Pew (12 ft. by 8 ft.) has windows similar to those of
the sanctuary with shield stops to the labels with impaling
arms of Frampton; the E. window is blind. Inside at the wall-head is a frieze of sub-cusped panels with shields-of-arms of
Frampton impaling various coats. In the W. wall is a doorway
to the tower with plain two-centred head. The South Tower
(8½ ft. square) is in three stages. The ground stage has a S.
doorway with hollow-chamfered two-centred head and continuous jambs under a label rising to a central finial from stops
carved with J.F. for James Frampton and the date 1776. Inside
on the N. wall is a painted rebus on a shield, a tun and a
raspberry plant and the words FRAM TUN. At the head of the
ground stage the panelled parapet of the adjoining buildings
is carried across the S. wall as a band of enrichment. The second
stage has cusped three-light windows in the E. and S. walls.
The label stops to the S. window are each carved with a seated
hound. The N. and W. windows are set at a higher level and
each has two plain lights and intersecting tracery without
cusping in a two-centred head. In the top stage the S. side has a
circular panel with invected border for a clock face. The
parapet is uniform with that round the rest of the church and
at each angle is a crocketed finial. The Vestry (13¾ ft. by 8 ft.)
has in the E. wall a doorway to the tower with moulded two-centred head and in the S. wall a window with shield stops to
the label carved with the arms of Frampton.
The chancel and nave Roofs are ceiled with four-centred
plaster vaults with moulded radial and diagonal ribs. At the
intersections are foliated bosses with shields of impaling arms
Fittings—Bells: two; 2nd by Pack and Chapman, 1776.
Brasses: In S.E. pew, reset in marble slab, (1) of Jamys Framton,
1523, figure in complete armour, except helmet and gauntlets,
kneeling at prayer desk, with shield-of-arms of Frampton, scroll
with black-letter inscription in Latin, and inscription plate;
with a second inscription plate reading 'This Effigy
with the Arms inscription and Scroll were taken from a
decayed marble monument in this Isle When it was rebuilt
in the year 1733'. Loose in vestry, (2) inscription plate recording the burial in a vault of the Rev. Roger Coker, Rector,
1813, and of his mother and three sisters, (probably after 1850).
Chest: in S.W. vestry, made up of early 16th-century Flemish
panels and modern pieces; front with five panels:—centre,
seated figure of a king, fixed to a modern backing; inner
flanking panels with arched tops and figures of Virtues, Truth
holding a mirror and Piety with a snake emerging from a
tower; outer panels with male and female heads. Coffin
Stools: pair, with turned legs, perhaps 18th-century. Communion Rails: curved on plan, oak arcading of cinque-foiled
two-centred arches with pierced spandrels carrying moulded
rail enriched with rosettes, mid 19th-century. Fonts: (1)
octagonal bowl with quatrefoil panels between corner standards, octagonal stem with trefoil-headed panels, and chamfered base, mid 19th-century; in churchyard, S. of S. doorway,
(2) mediaeval font-stem, octagonal with traces of carving or
panelling, now very worn, on moulded octagonal base and
surmounted by 18th-century round drum probably intended
for a sundial. Glass: the old glass was lost in 1940; the chancel
windows have been filled with engraved glass by Laurence
Whistler, 1958. Lectern: of oak, cusped panelled hexagonal
stem on panelled and enriched base, supporting ball and eagle,
Monuments: In S.E. pew, on E. wall, (1) to Mary (Houlton)
wife of James Frampton, 1762, marble tablet (Plate 113)
with frame with eared and scrolled top, decorated with
most delicately carved naturalistic flower sprays, and with
cartouche of arms of Frampton with an escutcheon framed in
foliage above, by Vangelder (Hutchins I, 405); on N. wall, (2)
to James Frampton, 1784, white marble tablet with inscription
recording that he rebuilt the church; on S. wall, (3) to Phillis
(Byam) second wife of James Frampton, 1829, white marble
tablet, erected by her children; (4) to James, eldest son of
James and Harriot Frampton, 1818, white marble tablet; on
W. wall, (5) to William Frampton and Judith (Arnold) his
wife and two children, coloured marble tablet flanked by
Ionic columns on gadrooned base and with broken pediment
enclosing cartouche with arms, erected by James Frampton,
1755. In vestry, on E. wall, (6) to Mary, daughter of James and
Phillis Frampton, 1846, white marble tablet; (7) to Phillis
Byam, widow of Evelyn Shirley and daughter of Charlton
and Phillis (Byam) Wollaston, 1836, and Frances their daughter,
1836, white marble tablet; on S. wall, (8) to Charlton Byam
son of Charlton Wollaston and Phillis (Byam) afterwards the
wife of James Frampton, 1840, white marble tablet; (9) to
Harriot, 3rd daughter of Henry Thomas, Earl of Ilchester,
and wife of James Frampton, 1844, white marble tablet.
Niche: in nave in S. wall, with trefoiled ogee head and carved
spandrels under an ogee crocketed label and with flared corbel
below, 18th-century. Pulpit: of oak, five sides of a hexagon
with cinque-foiled ogee panels and carved spandrels, moulded
top and base, on flared stem, and approached by oak steps
with quatre-foiled pierced risers, 1848. Royal Arms: over W.
doorway, in cast iron, of Queen Victoria, 1846. Screen: to
S. pew, similar to communion rails but solid and with cast
iron brattishing, 19th-century. Seating: with bench ends
copied from mediaeval ones similar to those in St. Lawrence's
church, Affpuddle (q.v.), 1776, with later alterations. Table:
in vestry, of oak with drawer, turned legs and moulded
stretchers, c. 1700. Tiles: glazed floor tiles: in sanctuary, red,
blue and yellow with roundels of the four Evangelists, and red,
blue, yellow and brown, with foliated roundels; in nave and
tower, forming large square foliated and geometrical panels of
red and yellow with diagonal bands of red and yellow and,
at the intersections, doves, crosses, Lamb and flag, IHS etc.;
c(2) Lychgate to new Cemetery (100 yds. N.E.) has four
timber Ionic columns carrying a timber roof rising from an
entablature with end pediments enclosing carved decoration
with scrolls, swags and pendants. Under the canopy so formed
open timber gates are hung between modern side walls in
which are set inscription stones from the Obelisk (6). The
structure formerly stood 110 yds. W. of the church, at the
entrance to the kitchen garden of Moreton House, where the
gates were set in an elliptical arched opening in a brick wall.
Originally of c. 1800, it was reconstructed in its present
position c. 1950.
b(3) Bridge (795904), over the river Frome at Hurst
(Plate 34), was built in 1834 as part of one scheme with
Affpuddle (2) q.v.
c(4) Broomhill Bridges, three (810881), over a
tributary of the river Frome, are of brick with brick
parapets and stone copings and of one, two and three
arches. They were built in 1769 by Edward Weld and
James Frampton (Kelly's Directory of Dorsetshire,
Winfrith Newburgh; Contract in D.C.R.O.).
Railway Station and Gatekeeper's Cottage, see
c(5) Moreton House (200 yds. S.E.) replaces a manor
house built by Robert Frampton in 1580 (Hutchins I,
400). The Frampton family, who have held the manor
since the 14th century, have, since the early 18th century,
maintained yearbooks in which major building works
have been entered. (fn. 1) In these it is recorded that the offices
(N.E. wing) were built in 1742 and that the main part of
the house was built in 1744, with work continuing on
the inside in 1745; in 1779 the E. front was taken down
and the house extended on this side by 13 ft., the alterations being finished in 1781. The main house is of two
storeys with cellars and attics, with walls of brick faced
with ashlar and roofs covered with stone slates. The N.E.
wing is of two storeys only and has the N. wall faced
in brick; N.E. again is a single-storey range, built for a
laundry and other domestic utilities, contemporary
with the N.E. wing except for the N. wall which was
rebuilt in brick in the 19th century. For simplicity
throughout, the elevations are described as if orientated
due N., S., E. and W.
The main house is a good substantial rectangular
structure typical of its time.
Architectural Description—The West Elevation (Plate 116),
of Portland stone, is in three bays, the centre bay being set
forward under a pediment with a modillion cornice which is
continued under the eaves of the side bays and of the other
three elevations. The central entrance doorway and flanking
windows are grouped together to form a Palladian composition
set in rusticated masonry above a plain ashlar base; the windows have moulded sills and cornices from which springs the
rounded head to the doorway which has a moulded archivolt
and stepped keystone. Over the doorway and in the side bays
are double-hung sash windows with flat-arched heads and
keystones. The attic has a half-round lunette in the tympanum
of the pediment and a pedimented dormer to each side. The
South Elevation has four windows to each storey; the main
windows are set under flat arches with keystones and the
dormers are pedimented. The position of the third window
from the W. was altered to maintain the symmetry of the
elevation when it was extended to the E. The East Elevation
of 1779, faced with Purbeck and some Portland stone, has a
central polygonal bay with a first-floor plat-band, small
cornice and parapet; the bay alone has these features, moreover it is shown semicircular on a contemporary plan in the
house, yet it is probably of 1779. Each main floor has three
windows in the bay and two openings or matching recesses
to each side, all with flat-arched heads and keystones. The
attic has three pedimented dormers. The North Elevation is
faced with rubble and the ground falls away to expose the
basement; there is a large round-headed window above the
passageway to the N.E. wing lighting the staircase.
Inside, the Entrance Hall has a moulded skirting and dado
rail above which are plaster panels with enriched borders;
the principal panels have eared corners and the one on the N.
wall a scrolled top. Over the windows are festoons of foliage
and flowers. There is an enriched modillion ceiling cornice
and the ceiling has a central circular panel surrounded by other
panels with acanthus decoration and masks of the goddesses
of the four seasons. The doorways have enriched architraves;
the principal ones are eared and surmounted by pulvinated
frieze and cornice. The later fireplace has a bolection-moulded
surround between engaged Ionic columns. The Library has
moulded and enriched skirting, dado rail and ceiling cornice;
the doorways have eared architraves with frieze and cornice
above, one with a central panel carved with birds and corn
sheaves; the fireplace has flanking detached Ionic columns of
yellow marble supporting an entablature with pulvinated
frieze also of yellow marble, the other members being of
white marble; the enriched window architraves finish at the
bottom with scrolls and acanthus foliage. The early 19th-century bookcases are of oak with reeded surrounds and a
cresting of Greek wave-ornament. The Drawing Room has
enriched skirting and dado rail, a frieze with honeysuckle
ornament, and cornice. The ceiling is decorated in the Wyatt
manner; it has a central panel with figures before an altar,
bringing gifts to a god whose figure appears in the background, surrounded by a geometrical pattern with scrolls,
foliage, urns and female figures in the corners. The doorways
have enriched architraves and overdoors with urns, honeysuckle and roses in the friezes. The fireplace has an early
19th-century marble surround with panels enriched with
figures with garlands, vases, foliage, flowers and ribands, very
delicately carved, perhaps by Vangelder. The Dining Room
has a fireplace surround of white and green marble flanked by
female terminal figures in profile supporting an entablature
with a moulded architrave and enriched frieze with a mask on a
central panel, all the enrichments being the attributes of Bacchus.
The doorways have enriched eared architraves and decorated
overdoors. The cantilevered stone main Staircase has a wrought
iron balustrade, in which scroll-work alternates with plain
standards. The ceiling over it has a coved cornice with escallops,
acanthus and swags of fruit and flowers, and a central moulded
panel with cartouches and central lozenge with foliage.
The first-floor rooms are grouped around a central space of
which the E. side is segmental on plan and the S. side is closed
by a screen of paired Ionic columns and pilasters of c. 1780.
The middle bedroom to the E. has a fireplace surround of
white and green marble with reeded sides and fluted frieze.
Most of the rooms have dado rails and ceiling cornices; some
retain the original fireplace surrounds of 1745. The staircase
from first floor to attics has a close string and turned newels
and balusters. The basement consists mainly of vaulted wine
cellars; one room has an arched fireplace of 16th-century
The North-east Wing is built on low ground and its upper
floor is on a level with the ground floor of the main house,
the two being linked by a passage carried on columns; the
space below the passage is now closed. The W. elevation has
a moulded eaves cornice and hung-sash windows under segmental-arched heads with keystones; in contrast the E. elevation has plain eaves, two-light windows with stone mullions
(some reused) and a doorway with chamfered jambs and
cambered lintel. The N. elevation includes some reused 16th-century brick and reused windows with chamfered and wavemoulded dressings.
Inside, the lower floor has a kitchen fireplace with three-centred arched head with stepped keystone, between two
semicircular arches. On the upper floor one room has an
original fireplace surround and is lined with bolection-moulded panelling; another room is lined with early 17th-century panelling, reset, in six heights with a fluted frieze.
The Outbuildings to the N.E. are contemporary with the N.E.
wing and have on the S. elevation doorways with chamfered
jambs and cambered heads with keystones; the windows are of
two lights with stone mullions. The N. wall was rebuilt in
brick with new stone-mullioned windows in the 19th century.
Bridge, 150 yds. N. of the house, built in 1836, has a level
roadway carried on iron joists suspended from low iron
arches; iron balustrades over the spandrels meet stone walls
with iron copings over the abutments.
Stable Building, 180 yds. N.W. of the house and just W. of
the church, is of 1739. It has brick walls with stone dressings,
the main N. front having five round-arched doorways between slightly projecting end bays; the roof is covered with
tiles with stone slates at the eaves and has gabled dormer
c(6) Obelisk (806884), of ashlar, designed by James
Hamilton of Weymouth, was erected in 1785–6
by Captain John Houlton in memory of James Frampton, who died in 1784. The obelisk stands some 70 ft.
high on a base with moulded plinth and cornice and is
surmounted by an urn 9¾ ft. high. On two sides of the
base were formerly marble tablets with commemorative
inscriptions; these are now built into the walls of the
Lychgate (2). (Gents'. Mag. 1787, pt. i, 49.)
c(7) Glebe House, formerly the Rectory (200 yds. N.W.), of
two storeys and attics, has walls of brick covered with stucco
and roofs covered with tiles and stone slates at the eaves. It
was built c. 1750 to replace a house destroyed by fire in 1740,
and a modern N. wing has been added. It is rectangular on
plan with a hipped roof above a moulded timber eaves
cornice. The windows have double-hung sashes under segmental arches with keystones. The original entrance doorway
in the S. wall has been converted to a window and modern
bay windows have been added to the S. and W. The staircase
has a cut string and turned newels and balusters; the other
internal fittings are modern.
c(8) Garden Buildings (300 yds. W.). A garden is enclosed
on three sides by brick walls about 9 ft. high which terminate
in octagonal pavilions, two storeys high with pyramidal roofs
rising to cupolas. They are of the late 18th century or c. 1800.
The eastern pavilion is a store-house, the western was built
as a pigeon-house, then converted to a summer-house and
subsequently burnt out. A mid 19th-century cottage has been
built over the N.E. corner of the garden wall.
The following monuments unless otherwise described are of one storey and attics or two storeys, with
walls of cob and roofs covered with thatch. They are
of the late 18th or early 19th century, mostly built on a
two-room plan with central entrance doorway and one
end chimney, giving a kitchen-living room at one end
and a pantry or scullery at the other.
c(9) The Old Schoolhouse (130 yds. W.N.W.) has an
original brick front and a slated roof. It was built in the early
19th century and has been heightened.
c(10) House (160 yds. N.N.W.), adjoining the Post Office'
has a brick front and is of the late 18th century. The front
elevation is symmetrical with widely spaced casement
windows flanking the central entrance doorway. The original
plan comprised two main rooms with end chimneys and a
central entrance hall and service room, with the staircase in a
projection behind. The central part of the house has now been
rearranged. The staircase projection is an unusual feature at
c(11) Cottage, 20 yds. N.W. of (10), has the front wall
refaced in brick. The plan comprises a living room and a
scullery. The living room has a fireplace against the gable wall
with an original oven at the side of it; the staircase is in the
c(12) Cottages, 40 yds. N.W. of (10), range of four,
probably comprising, from E. to W., a 19th-century cottage
with living-room and scullery plan, an 18th-century cottage
with two-room plan and a central chimney, a late 17th-century
cottage with two-room plan and end chimneys and another
18th-century cottage with two-room plan and a central chimney. The last three were fitted with new windows in the
c(13) Cottage, 90 yds. N.W. of (10), has brick walls and
c(14) Manor House (475 yds. W.), with brick walls and
tiled roof, was built in 1772 on an L-shaped plan which was
later converted to a rectangle and extended to the W. The
back kitchen may represent part of an older cottage incorporated. Farm Buildings stand to N. The Barn has brick walls
with buttresses between the bays and is of the mid 18th century. The Stable, with walls of rubble and brick, is contemporary with the barn. The Granary, of brick carried on arches,
with a tiled roof, is of the early 19th century.
a(15) Hedera Cottage (650 yds. W.) has brick walls.
a(16) Cottage (797894) has been extended in brick in the
late 19th century.
a(17–21) Cottages (795893, 793897, 792897, 792896),
group of seven cottages including two pairs, were all built
as part of a planned development, and all have been enlarged
b(22) House (793902) has brown brick walls with red
dressings and is symmetrically designed, with central entrance
and end chimneys.
b(23) House (794901), part of former smithy, has brick walls
and slated roof and is of the second quarter of the 18th century.
It has a symmetrical front elevation with plat-band and
central entrance doorway flanked by segmental-headed casement windows; the chimney-stack is slightly off-centre.
b(24–26) Cottages (795901, 794903, 794904).
c(27) Broom Pound, formerly Moreton Dairy (811883),
of two storeys with brick walls, was built in 1738 as a long
range running E.-W. with one internal chimney; a small
wing projecting to the N. may be an addition. The house
was formerly two tenements. Outbuilding, immediately S. of
the house, also of brick, is of the same date as the house.
(28–30) Round Barrows p. 446.
(31) Roman Remains p. 603.