23 WIMBORNE ST. GILES (0311)
(O.S. 6 ins., SU 00 NW, SU 00 NE, SU 01 SW, SU 01 SE,
SU 01 NW)
The parish, covering 5,947 acres, extends for over 7
miles in a roughly L-shaped strip from the E. Dorset
heathland in the S.E., north-westwards to Cranborne
Chase. The central and northern parts of the area, on
Chalk, are drained by the headwaters of the R. Allen
and the R. Crane which flow through broad, open
valleys between 400 ft. and 180 ft. above O.D.; the S.E.
part, a well-wooded undulating area of Reading Beds
and London Clay, is drained by tributaries of the Crane.
The parish contains several early settlements. Four in
the Allen valley are mentioned in Domesday. Monkton
Up Wimborne in the N.E. was part of Cranborne until
late in the 19th century. Next is Wimborne All Hallows,
a separate parish until 1733; the site of the church is
known, but almost nothing remains. Further S.E. the
village of Wimborne St. Giles stands near the centre of
the parish. To the S. of St. Giles lay Philipston, now
deserted (Dorset Procs., 88 (1967), 210). Roughly
rectangular land-blocks associated with these settlements
are still defined by continuous hedge-lines. Oakley
Farm on Oakley Down was a separate settlement within
Monkton Up Wimborne; it existed in 1333 and probably earlier.
Much of the S.E. part of the parish, on the Reading
Beds and London Clay, was a detached part of Gussage
St. Michael until the 19th century. It contains the
scattered hamlet of Sutton Holms, of which the history
is not documented.
St. Giles's House, the seat of the earls of Shaftesbury,
is the principal Monument in the parish. House, church,
almshouses and estate buildings, together with an extensive park, compose a unit of aesthetic and historical
interest. Manor Farm at Monkton Up Wimborne has a
16th-century timber-framed house. The Bronze Age
barrow group on Oakley Down is noteworthy.
(1) The Parish Church of St. Giles, near the centre
of the village, has walls of Greensand ashlar chequered
with panels of squared and knapped flint, and slate-covered roofs. The N. wall of the West Tower is
probably earlier than other parts of the church, accounting for the asymmetry of the tower in relation to the
nave, and it may be mediaeval in origin; some rough
ashlar is exposed in the S. wall of the vestry. In 1732
(Hutchins, 1st ed., II, 219) the Nave and tower were
almost entirely rebuilt. Close affinities with the church
at Blandford Forum (Dorset III, 19) suggest John and
William Bastard as the architects, but documentary
evidence is lacking. In 1887, N. and S. arcades designed
by G. F. Bodley were inserted in the nave, previously
undivided, and a north chapel was added. In 1908 fire
destroyed everything except the tower, the S. and E.
walls of the 18th-century nave, and a few fittings. In
1910 the nave colonnades were rebuilt, the North Aisle
was added and the interior was sumptuously refitted to
designs by Sir Ninian Comper.
Externally, the tower and nave illustrate the high
ability of provincial builder-architects in the first half of
the 18th century. Inside, interesting monuments are
Architectural Description— The Chancel and Nave are
structurally one, although separated by an oak rood-screen which
continues in the N. aisle. The E. wall has a chamfered plinth
and a round-headed window with an apron extending down to
the plinth; a pediment with a moulded cornice encloses a
bull's-eye window with a moulded architrave and four key-stones. The S. wall has plinth and moulded cornice continuous
with those on the E.; the ashlar buttresses are of three stages with
wave-moulded weathering. In the eastern bay, a square-headed
doorway is flanked by rusticated Tuscan pilasters supporting an
entablature with a pulvinated frieze; above is a round-headed
window with a moulded architrave with plain imposts and
keystone. Further W. are two larger round-headed windows
with architraves and aprons as on the E.; between them is a
plain round-headed doorway. The South Porch has a round-headed archway with plain imposts and keystone; above is a
moulded string-course and a small pediment.
Wimborne St. Giles, the Parish Church of St. Giles
The West Tower (Plate 5) is of three stages. The two lower
stages have corner buttresses in the form of rusticated pilasters
and the top stage has similar corner pilasters without rustication.
String-courses continuous with the capitals of the pilasters define
the stages. At the top a modillion cornice is surmounted by a
plain parapet with a balustraded panel at the centre of each side.
Each corner has a stone vase with a wrought-iron finial. The
round-headed W. doorway has an ashlar surround of Portland
stone, with Tuscan pilasters, entablature and pediment; above
is a round-headed window with a rusticated architrave. The S.
side of the lower stage has a round-headed window similar to
those of the nave, but smaller. On the S. and W. the middle
stage has circular openings with plain archivolts and key-blocks;
that on the W. contains a clock face. Each side of the top stage
has a round-headed belfry window with a plain architrave with
a key-block and plain imposts; below the sill is an apron of
Fittings—Books: Common Prayer, Baskerville, 1761, seven
leather-bound copies. Brass: In pavement of N. aisle, of Francis
(sic.), 1652, 2nd wife of 1st earl of Shaftesbury, plate (16 ins. by
11½ ins.) with inscription in Roman capitals. Chest: In vestry, of
oak, with two compartments, each with panelled lid, sides plain,
late 18th century. Coffin-stools: seven, with turned legs and
beaded tops, late 17th century. Font: of stone, with round bowl
with strapwork decoration, on octagonal baluster and square
base (Plate 18), probably early 17th century. Glass: Reset in
centre S. window, two trefoil-headed panels and one rectangular, the former depicting Entry into Jerusalem, the latter showing
St. Andrew presenting kneeling donor to throned figure, donor
with shield-of-arms (unidentified 53), German or Flemish, early
16th-century, erected 1785. Graffiti: On apron of S.W. nave
window, intials and dates from 1744; on jambs of W. doorway,
Monuments and Floor-slab: Monuments. In N. aisle, on N. wall,
(1) of Rev. Charles Talbot, 1823, marble tablet with shield-of-arms of Talbot impaling Somerset; (2) of Sir Anthony Ashley,
Bt., 1628, and his wife Jane (Okeover), large tomb of clunch
and alabaster with restored painted enrichment (Plate 13), with
two effigies lying on sarcophagus beneath double barrel-vaulted
canopy supported on Corinthian columns; at head, pedestal
with trophied sides supporting model of helm, at foot similar
pedestal supporting gauntlets and globular object with polygonal
facets; beside sarcophagus kneeling lady, presumably Anne,
daughter of commemorated, wife of Sir John Cooper and
mother of 1st earl of Shaftesbury; above canopy, inscription
panels set between composite columns and flanked by later
cartouches with arms of Okeover and Peyto; over all, shield-of-arms quarterly of twelve: i and xii Ashley (ancient, or
Astley) (fn. 1) , ii Talbot, iii Camois, iv Ashley, v Hamelyn, vi Plecy,
vii Malmains, viii Rumsey, ix Beseley, x Okeover, xi Peyto;
baronet's inescutcheon; helm with crest, a vase of ostrich plumes
above earl's coronet; flanking, restored figures of Fortitude and
Temperance. Also in N. aisle, (3) of 3rd earl, 1712, granite
sarcophagus-shaped wall-monument surmounted by niche with
female figure representing 'Polite Literature mourning the death
of her most distinguished votary'; (4) of 1st earl, died 1683,
marble wall-monument by J. M. Rysbrack (M. I. Webb,
Michael Rysbrack, 224), erected 1732, with inscription tablet,
medallions representing three wives, portrait bust and arms of
Ashley quartering Cooper (Plate 73). On S. wall, near E. end,
(5) of 4th earl, 1771, variegated marble wall-monument designed
by James Stuart and made by T. Scheemakers, with inscription
panel, sarcophagus, achievement-of-arms, cherubs and bust
(Plate 73); over S. doorway, (6) of 5th earl, 1811, marble wall-monument by R. Schadow, with Roman-Doric aedicule enclosing reliefs. Near S.W. corner of nave, formerly in chancel,
(7) recumbent mail-clad effigy with feet resting on couched
beast, feet and beast probably late 13th century, other parts
modern. In churchyard, S. and S.E. of church, (8–10) of John
Stead, 1662, Thomas Warner, 1657, and Thomas Dowse, 1649,
three coffin-shaped stones. Floor-slab: In nave, near E. end,
Purbeck marble slab of Rev. Thomas Hooper, 1753, with Latin
inscription and arms of Hooper, Port and Davenant.
Plate: in the church includes undated Elizabethan silver cup
by 'Gillingham' silversmith, with cover-paten perhaps of somewhat later 16th-century date; stand-paten with assay mark of
1730 and donor's inscription of 1731; stand-paten with assay
mark of 1836. Plate kept in modern private chapel at (4) includes
large cup and matching flagon, with assay marks and donor's
inscriptions of 1731, in original leather cases. Royal Arms: (Plate
73), of carved wood, 1714–1801.
(2) Almshouses (03161199), adjacent to the church on
the N.W., are of one storey and have brick walls with
ashlar dressings, and tile-covered roofs (Plate 61). They
were built c. 1624 (Hutchins III, 600) and comprise a
central common-room, now disused, flanked by symmetrical wings. Each wing originally contained five
The S.W. front of the centre bay is gabled and of two storeys,
with a three-arched loggia in the lower storey and with an
inscription panel and a cartouche-of-arms flanked by square-headed casement windows with moulded surrounds in the upper
storey. The inscription, within a border of bezants, reads
'Liberasti me Domine in maxima tribulatione'. The shield-of-arms, uncharged except for a baronet's badge carved on a
canton, is surmounted by a helm and crest (a vase of ostrich
feathers above a coronet) and is flanked by carved mantling;
presumably the charges were painted. The arms are enclosed in
a moulded rectangular frame with egg-and-dart enrichment. In
the gable, a rectangle of moulded brickwork surrounds an oval
stone panel. A small bell-cote on the apex of the gable has
recently been replaced by a cross finial. In the flanking wings the
doorway of each dwelling has a massive timber frame with a
shallow four-centred head; the casement windows are of two
square-headed lights with moulded ashlar surrounds. In the N.E.
elevation the common-room has a window of three trefoil-headed lights; an archway has recently been formed in the wall
below this window. The doorway from the loggia to the common-room has oak jambs with arabesque enrichment, and
palmette ornament on the head. The oak door is highly enriched,
with moulded stiles and rails and a fretted top panel carved with
a grotesque mask (Plate 35).
(3) Stocks (03011198), of oak with iron hasp and staple, much
weathered, are probably of the 18th-century.
(4) St. Giles's House (03221159) has walls of brickwork with ashlar dressings, and roof-coverings of slate
and of lead. The building is now mainly two-storeyed
with cellars and attics, but the basement storey in the E.
block was formerly above ground and its rooms have
been made into cellars by the construction of later
The Commission first visited St. Giles's House in
1964 and the accompanying plan and photographs show
the house as it then was. Subsequently, in the course of
stripping 18th-century cement rendering from the
walls, much new information has come to light and
continues to come to light at the time of writing (1973);
current research in the muniment room is also yielding
important results. The description which follows can
only be provisional. Many problems remain unresolved.
On the death of Sir Anthony Ashley in 1628 the
manor of St. Giles passed to his only child Anne, wife of
Sir John Cooper of Rockbourne, and on Sir John's
death in 1631 to his grandson, Sir Anthony AshleyCooper, the statesman and politician who in 1672 was
created Earl of Shaftesbury. Sir Anthony greatly
enlarged and modernised his maternal grandfather's
house. In an autobiographical fragment he records
'On 19 March 1650/1 I laid the first stone of my house
at St. Giles' (Christie, First Earl of Shaftesbury, p. lv),
and a document of 1654 states that 'Sir A. A. Cooper
has occasion to carry timber and stone to his building'
(Cal. S.P. Dom., 1654, p. 303).
The earliest drawing of the house as yet discovered is a
small bird's-eye view from N.E. on an estate map
dated 1659 (Plate 82). In it a branch of the R. Allen is
seen flowing between two groups of buildings. On the
W. bank, a courtyard is defined by W., S. and E.
ranges, that on the W. apparently two-storeyed, the
others lower. To S. a small building, probably a mill,
spans the stream. On the E. bank an ill-defined range,
parallel with the stream, seems to be connected with the
western courtyard by a bridge. Further E., at right-angles to the ill-defined range, an E.–W. range has a
chimney-stack or smoke-louvre on its roof; this range
seems to terminate in a tower-like building of three or
perhaps four storeys. Further E. again, a large rectangular building is identifiable with the 1st earl's new
house, started in 1650/1 and perhaps still under construction in 1659.
An estate map dated 1672, probably by the same
draughtsman as that of 1659, shows the house from the
E. (Plate 82). The mill is no longer seen. The E. front
of the 1st earl's new house, symmetrical and of seven
bays, appears much as at present. Behind it, a long range,
on the site of the building on the E. bank of the stream
in the drawing of 1659, extends N. and S. beyond the
ends of the 1651 building. The S. part of this range still
exists (Small Dining Room on accompanying plan); the
N. part, largely rebuilt in the 19th century to create the
N. tower, was demolished in 1973. Further W., the
sketch of 1672 appears to show the courtyard on the W.
of the stream. Later illustrations include two engravings
published by Hutchins (1774 ed., II, opp. 216): a view
from S.W. by Thomas Vivares and an E. elevation by B.
Pryce of Dorchester. These views date from the third
quarter of the 18th century and show that the house was
not greatly changed externally between then and 1972,
except for the addition of two 19th-century towers,
bow windows in the S. front, and dormer-windowed
attics (Plate 74).
St. Giles's House, Principal Floor, 1964
The manor house inherited by the 1st earl appears to
be represented by thick walls of neatly coursed red
brickwork seen in the lower storey of the central range
of the present building (basements of Green Room,
Small Dining Room, Ante-room), but not enough is
exposed, at present, to allow inference of an original
plan. Some 30 yds. N.E. of these walls, in a cellar
below the Tapestry Room, a moulded stone doorway
of 16th-century origin appears to be another relic of the
Ashley house, perhaps of the tower-like building shown
in the 1659 sketch. Other remains include fragments of
oak panelling now in the library (Plate 35); a 15th-century carved alabaster panel (Plate 73), now in the
room below the Green Room, with a shield-of-arms,
three bulls passant quartering three talbots passant, recorded at the Heralds' Visitation of 1531 as Ashley
quartering Talbot (John Ashley married Edith Talbot
temp. Richard II); a roundel of stained glass with the
same arms above the inscription 'scutum Henrici
Asheley', probably of the 16th century; and three
square pillars of rusticated ashlar, perhaps of early 17th-century origin, now seen in the basement below the
E. end of the library, but evidently not in situ.
The old range, shown on the 1659 sketch extending
E.–W. between the 1st earl's new building and the
watercourse, probably remained standing until the 18th
century, when it was removed to make way for the
Great Dining Room (Plate 77), erected by Henry
Flitcroft for the 4th earl. Flitcroft also worked on a
'New Hall', identifiable as the present Tapestry Room,
and on a 'Musick Room next to the Great Dining
Room', evidently the present White Hall (account
books 1740–4, St. Giles's House muniments).
As the S.W. wing appears on Vivares's engraving it
must have been built before 1774, but there is no record
of the date of building, and at the time of demolition
in 1972 no datable features were seen. The obliquity of
the wing suggests that it was built on the foundations of
some earlier range; on the sketch of 1659, however, the
site is shown vacant.
In the period 1813–20 the 6th earl employed Thomas
Cundy on extensive alterations, for which accounts
exist. Among them were the roofing-over of an inner
courtyard to form the Stone Hall and the formation of a
Library to the S.; the library extends into the S.W.
part of the 1651 building. In 1853 the 7th earl employed
P. C. Hardwick to pull down and rebuild the kitchens
on the N. of the W. court, and in 1854 Hardwick built
Italianate towers over the entrance vestibule and small
dining room; he also remodelled and heightened the
roofs (Plate 81).
Architectural Description—The E. front of the 1st earl's new
building of 1651 is symmetrical and of seven bays (Plate 74).
Originally of finely jointed red brickwork with brick quoins
and with stone architraves to the openings, the wall-face was
rendered in cement in the time of the 5th earl (1771–1811).
The brick quoins appear to have been chamfered and rendered at
an earlier period. Former basement windows, obliterated by the
E. terrace, are attested by six blind embrasures in the long
vaulted cellar below the two drawing rooms; the centre bay
having no embrasure suggests that there was originally a flight
of steps from the garden to the central opening on the piano
nobile. The tall windows of the piano nobile rooms have original
keystones, subsequently extended in cement to join a cement
plat-band, and shaped cement aprons below the window-sills.
The central opening has a stone architrave with a heavy key-stone and scrolled brackets supporting a curvilinear broken
pediment within which a blank shield is surmounted by a
coronet. The central window of the chamber storey has a
rusticated architrave and a multiple keystone; the other chamber
windows have details as in the piano nobile. The cement enrichments appear on Vivares's and Pryce's engravings and were
perhaps designed by Flitcroft; they are repeated on all the
principal elevations. Above the chamber window is a second
cement plat-band and a plain parapet wall with a row of ball
finials; the latter appear to have been installed in the 19th century
to replace the crenellations shown on 18th-century engravings.
The N. front of the E. block (Plate 81) comprises the end of
the building of 1651 and the N. side of Flitcroft's range. Above
terrace level the joint between the two buildings is masked,
but in a narrow passage which extends along the N. front, below
the terrace, the brick quoin of the 1651 building is seen. In
the same passage are also seen the original basement windows.
Those of the 1651 building have moulded stone architraves and
keystones; those of Flitcroft's range have similar architraves and
also heavily moulded stone window-sills, details which prove
that the basement storey was originally a visible part of the
façade. In the two upper storeys the details of most of the
windows are as described in the E. front, but the easternmost
bay of Flitcroft's range has, on the piano nobile, a round-headed
doorway in a stone door-case with rusticated pilasters and a
Roman-Doric entablature and pediment; above, the chamber
storey has a window with scrolled cheek-pieces and a segmental
pediment. Evidently Flitcroft made this bay of the N. front
into the main entrance. The vaulted substructures of a perron,
now concealed by the terrace, are still seen in the basement.
Later, when Cundy or Hardwick transferred the main entrance
to another position further W., Flitcroft's entrance hall became
the Tapestry Room and his principal doorway was converted
into a window. At basement level the projecting block of the
later entrance vestibule, shown on the 1672 drawing, had 17th-century characteristics, but the cement-rendered superstructure
was mainly of 1854.
The S. front (Plate 74) is composed of the S. end of the 1651
building together with the S. side of the range which links
that building to the earlier house. Again the basement storey
is exposed in a ventilation passage below the terrace while the
upper storeys of the façade are masked by later rendering and
additions. The basement windows of 1651 have moulded stone
architraves, as described above; their upper parts are depicted
on Vivares's engraving. The basement windows in the linking
range have no architraves, but the former stonework appears to
have been removed when these windows were bricked up.
Above, in the cement-rendered piano nobile and chamber
storeys, 19th-century projecting windows take the place of the
two eastern bays of the 1651 façade; the other piano nobile
windows are fitted with 19th-century french casements. The
chamber windows, string-courses and parapets are uniform with
those of the E. front. A rusticated quoin still defines the S.W.
corner of the 1651 building; Vivares shows it in his engraving.
The E. and S. walls of the small dining room and the chamber
above it appear on the estate-map drawing of 1672, but not
on that of 1659. The architectural details of the windows are
uniform with those of the E. front. The top storey with its
balustraded parapet (Plate 74) was added in 1854.
The S. elevation of the bedroom and ante-room block is
symmetrical and of three bays, with basement, piano nobile
and chamber storeys; it remains today much as shown on
Vivares's engraving except that the central opening in the
basement has ceased to be an archway. A short westward
extension of the façade, masking the end of the oblique S.W.
wing, allows the central opening of the symmetrical façade to
fall clear of the adjacent N.—S. wall, which is earlier (see below).
The long S.W. wing of nine bays extending W. from the
three-bay projection in an orientation slightly oblique to the
rest of the house, demolished in 1972, was of three storeys,
the first floor being level with the piano nobile and the ground
floor corresponding with the basements elsewhere. In general,
the plain sashed windows were uniform and evenly spaced. A
projecting bay with traceried windows in the lower storey was
formed c. 1900 as part of a domestic chapel designed by Sir
Ninian Comper. When the rest of the range was demolished the
chapel was allowed to remain. The N. side of the S.W. wing
was masked by a 19th-century range.
The E. side of the court has six bays of plain sashed windows
in three storeys, the lowest storey corresponding with the
basement of the E. block. Although the thickness of the W.
wall of the Green Room suggests that it survives from an older
range, no building appears in this position on the sketch of
1659. The kitchen wing on the N. side of the courtyard, rebuilt
in 1853 and demolished in 1971, had no notable features.
Inside, the basements of the White Hall, Green Room and
small dining room have rendered walls and no certain traces of
the early house are visible. The room below the ante-room has,
on S. and W., brick walls with wide window splays subsequently modified to suit 18th-century openings. It is possible
that this basement incorporates the 'mill' shown in the sketch of
1659, but if so the watercourse must have been moved; it now
flows in a culvert below a vaulted cellar to the west.
In the basements which lie between the former manor house
and the house of 1651, a blocked arch, with ashlar voussoirs
spanning some 8 ft, supports the W. part of the S. wall of
the Tapestry Room; it may have originated as a gateway in the
inner court before the erection of Flitcroft's dining-room range.
Although removed on the piano nobile to form Flitcroft's
'New Hall' (Tapestry Room), the northern part of the W. wall
of the 1651 building is intact in the basement and it is here,
close to the N. front, that the 16th-century stone doorway
mentioned before is found. It has a heavily moulded four-centred or 'Tudor' head, under a label with returned stops, and
continuous jambs ending in moulded and broached stops. The
mouldings are on the W. and the rebate on the E. side.
The basement of the 1st earl's new building of 1651 is divided
by the spine-wall into two parts, both with brick barrel-vaults
of elliptical cross-section probably inserted during the 18th
century. In the area below the library, however, the southern
sector of the W. basement has no vault, but beams supporting
the library floor. On the N. side of this basement room are
three niches with jambs formed of rusticated stone piers, perhaps
of the late 16th or early 17th century, but certainly reset. There
is some reason to associate this material with a bath room
mentioned in a manuscript by the 1st earl (St. Giles's House
muniments), directing that 'the three rooms within, and
the dineing roome be finished & a bathing roome made under
that wch. was intended for the Cabanett & a doore opened out of
the Hall into it & that doore into the long greene walk be made
up'. The earl's 'dineing roome' was probably one of the two
present drawing rooms, since Pryce's view calls the E. façade
'the dining room front'; the 'three roomes within' would
therefore be in the W. part of the 1651 building with, presumably,
the intended cabinet on the S. and the bathing room below it.
Since a door was to be made from the hall into the bathing
room, it follows that the earl's 'hall' was in the basement
storey. It may have been below the 19th-century main staircase.
On the piano nobile the White Hall (Plate 75), Flitcroft's
music room, has 18th-century decoration augmented by later
work. The ceiling (Plate 38) is original.
Flitcroft's Great Dining Room (Plate 77) has a coved plaster
ceiling rising into the chamber storey. The cornice has a frieze
of gilded rinceaux. The doorcases are flanked by pilasters with
scrolled brackets supporting broken pediments enclosing busts.
The white marble fireplace surround (Plate 37) has foliate swags
and scrolled consoles with flower festoons; at the centre is a
Bacchic mask. The wooden overmantel has clusters of Corinthian pilasters and half-columns supporting an entablature with
a scrolled pediment enclosing a cartouche and festoons of fruit
and flowers; at the centre is an oil-painting attributed to Van
Dyck. Attached to the walls are six portraits in gilded surrounds
with enriched borders. Between the windows are oval mirrors
with gilt foliate surrounds and marble-topped console tables with
brackets elaborately enriched with festoons.
The Tapestry Room, Flitcroft's 'New Hall', has door-cases
with pulvinated laurel-leaf friezes and pediments enclosing
baskets of fruit and coronets. The cornice is 19th-century work.
The North Drawing Room, probably the dining room of the
1651 house, has 18th-century joinery and plasterwork, but it
retains a stone chimneypiece of c. 1650 (Plate 76) with a moulded
and enriched cornice supported on brackets with acanthus
leaves; between these are heavy festoons of fruit; the pilasters
have lion masks and fruit swags.
The South Drawing Room has 18th-century joinery as in the
adjacent room, and a marble chimneypiece of the same period
with caryatid figures supporting the cornice. The ceiling, on the
other hand, is of c. 1650 and has wreaths of oak and bay-leaves
surrounding a central wreath of fruit and flowers (Plate 76).
It is comparable with ceilings of c. 1635 formerly in Balmes
House, Hackney (Drawings by G. W. Toussaint, Hackney
The small lobby in the thickness of the spine-wall, between
the S. drawing room and the library, retains the original
ceiling cornice with gilded acanthus enrichment. The walls are
decorated with 16th-century carved oak panelling, perhaps
taken from the former Ashley house, with arabesques and busts
in high relief (Plate 35).
The main staircase, with wrought-iron balustrades of plain
design, appears to be Cundy's work of c. 1820, as also the Stone
Hall in the area of the former courtyard. The hall is two-storeyed, with columned galleries, and has a vaulted plaster
ceiling with pendentives supporting a fluted dome above a
drum with windows. The stairs in the 1st earl's house probably
occupied the same position as at present and, as suggested
above, possibly continued down to an entrance hall on the
lower level, where now are cellars. Adjacent to Cundy's stairs
is a small oak service stair of 17th-century origin, with moulded
close strings, square newel posts with carved pendants, turned
balusters and stout moulded handrails.
When Cundy created the library he obliterated the earlier
rooms of the S. connecting range. Further W., the Green Room,
the small dining room, the ante-room and the bed room have
19th-century decorations. The staircase on the N. of the anteroom is probably Cundy's work.
In the storey above the piano nobile several chambers have
18th-century dados with fielded panelling, and ceilings with
moulded cornices. A chamber above the S. drawing room has
a wooden chimneypiece (Plate 36) of c. 1650, carved to represent
hanging drapery. An inserted panel with a painted inscription
records that the room was once part of the 3rd earl's library.
Vivares's engraving shows that the roofs were not originally
seen behind the crenellated parapets; or if seen that they were
low enough to be ignored. The present steep roofs were built
by Hardwick to admit the construction of dormer-windowed
attic rooms loftier than those of the 17th century. In the area
above Cundy's main staircase, however, a small part of the
original roof survives. It is of low mansard form, with stout
chamfered beams some 6 ft. long rising at a steep pitch from the
wall-plate to join similar timbers at a very low pitch which span
the interval between the first-named members and the spine
Although Vivares's engraving shows that the recently
demolished S.W. wing existed in the 18th century, its rooms
contained no notable features. At the time of demolition the
remaining fittings were of the late 19th or early 20th century.
The chapel is outside the scope of this inventory.
(5) Castellated Archway (03051146), of ashlar and rubble,
with two rusticated towers flanking a round-headed arch (Plate
32), is said to have been built in 1748 (MS. notes by 7th earl).
(6) Grotto (03451142), with walls of flint and rubble, roofed
partly with tiles and partly with slate, was begun in 1751 (Hutchins
III, 598) to the design of Mr. Castles of Marylebone (Pococke,
Travels (Camden Soc., xliv) II, 138). The main compartments, an
ante-room and an inner grotto, have their walls lined with
shells, fossils, coral and stone flakes mounted on an irregular
timber framework composed partly of unhewn tree-roots. The
lath-and-plaster 'vault' is similarly concealed. In the ante-room
the pavement is of patterned pebble mosaic; the inner room has
a late 19th-century tiled floor and fireplace. Smaller compartments flanking the ante-room are lined with architectural fragments and flints, many of the latter suspended from the timber
roof by iron hooks.
(7) 'Temple' (03011129), with brick walls and a slate-covered
roof, has a rendered Ionic portico of two columns between
antae, supporting a pedimented entablature. One side wall has
a round-headed window. The structure, a summer-house, is
probably of the 19th century.
Monuments (8–11) are arranged on four sides of a courtyard,
originally a manège.
(8) Riding House (03301170), now stables, on the S. of the
courtyard, is of two storeys and has brick walls with ashlar
dressings, and tiled roofs; it dates probably from the first quarter
of the 17th century (Plate 75). In the symmetrical nine-bay S.
front, five bays with eaves alternate with four gabled bays, each
gable having shaped kneelers, moulded copings and three
obelisk finials. The storeys are defined by a moulded ashlar
string-course; the plinth has ogee-moulded capping. In the lower
storey the middle bay has an elliptical-headed doorway with a
chamfered ashlar surround. Each gabled bay has a ground-floor
window of four elliptical-headed lights with ovolo-moulded
stone jambs and mullions; in the upper storey it has a square-headed light and there is a small bull's-eye window in the gable.
The moulded plinth and string-course continue on the gabled
E. and W. end-walls. The E. gable has three bull's-eye windows
arranged in a triangle. The W. end-wall has a ground-floor
doorway similar to that of the S. front, but narrower; flanking
it are two windows, each of two elliptical-headed lights; there
are similar windows in the upper storey. At the apex of the W.
gable is a diagonally-set brick chimney-stack. The N. elevation
is without architectural ornament, except that three plain doorways are spanned by carved oak spandrels of 17th-century
origin, brought from elsewhere. Both storeys have plain casement windows.
Inside, the building has been fitted with stalls and loose-boxes;
the stalls have posts with acorn finials, probably of 18th-century
date. The roof has eight chamfered tie-beam trusses with collar-beams and queen-struts supporting two chamfered purlins on
(9) Barn (03281173), on the W. side of the courtyard, with
timber-framed walls masked in part by later brickwork and with
a tile-covered roof, dates from early in the 16th century. In the
W. elevation the timber framework, with later brick nogging,
is set on a high flint plinth with ashlar dressings and with a
weathered ashlar buttress at the base of each main post. Early
in the 17th century the gabled S. end was rebuilt in brickwork
with ashlar dressings resembling that of (8); the façade has three
bull's-eye windows arranged in a triangle. The E. elevation was
refaced in brickwork, probably in the 18th century, but part of
the original buttressed flint plinth remains. The N. end of the
barn is masked by a later building. Inside, the barn has been
divided into stables, dairies etc., but of the original timber-framed structure there remain twelve and a half bays, one bay
having been truncated in the construction of the 17th-century S.
façade. The timber-framed posts, with shouldered heads, support
collar and tie-beam trusses with lower angle-struts; the slightly
cambered tie-beams are braced to the posts.
(10) Barn (03301175), on the N. of the courtyard, is similar
to the foregoing in construction and date; it has a gabled transeptal exit-bay on the N. side, with an ashlar doorway with
buttressed jambs; the E. and W. walls are of brick. The buttressed
flint and ashlar plinths have been extensively rebuilt in brickwork.
(11) Barn (03321173), similar to the foregoing, on the E. of
the courtyard, has been extensively altered while being adapted
for use as stables. In the 19th century the S. end was removed
and a pair of cottages was built in its place, with brick walls with
ashlar dressings and tiled roofs designed to harmonise externally
with (8). To the N., the barn abuts on a 19th-century Farmhouse
of two storeys with brick walls and tiled roofs.
(12) Range (03291179), nearly parallel with (10), is single-storeyed with lofts and has walls partly of brickwork and partly
weathereboarded, and a tiled roof. It is of the late 17th or early
(13) The Rectory (03211198), of two storeys with attics, has
brick walls and tiled roofs; in the original walls the lower
courses are built with exceptionally large bricks. The S.W.
range is of the late 17th century and probably originated with a
class-T plan. Early in the 18th century a S.E. wing was added
and a staircase was built in the re-entrant angle so formed. Later
in the 18th century a dining-room was built on the N.E. of the
staircase. About the middle of the 19th century the original
range was extended to N.W. and a service range was built on
the N.E. At the same time the drawing-room, at the southern
end of the original range, was heightened at the expense of the
upper storey, new S.E. windows were formed, and a fireplace
and chimneybreast were built on the S.W. The mid 19th-century
extensions were removed in 1955 and the late 18th-century
dining-room was then made into a kitchen.
19th century range, now demolished.
The S.W. front retains original casement windows of two
and of three lights with plain timber surrounds. The 18th
century dining-room wing has tall segmental-headed sashed
windows in both storeys, and a coved eaves cornice. Inside, the
ground-floor room in the early 18th-century S.E. wing and the
bedroom in the dining-room wing have fielded panelling in two
heights, partly reset. The stairs have square newel posts, three
turned balusters to each step, moulded handrails and scrolled
(14) Mill House (03011199), of two storeys with attics, with
brick walls and tiled roofs (Plate 61), dates from the first half
of the 17th century. Although now a dwelling house, and in the
19th century an inn, the first purpose of the building was
evidently industrial; the mill-race passing underneath it and the
large open fireplaces in each storey suggest that it was a paper
mill (cf. Harnham Mill, Salisbury). The S. front comprises six
equally spaced bays, each bay having in each storey a stone
window of four square-headed lights. Those of the lower storey
have sunk-chamfered surrounds; those above have ovolo
mouldings; much of the stonework has been renewed. Between
the two central ground-floor windows is an elliptical-headed
doorway of uncertain date, possibly original, with a chamfered
stone surround ending in shaped stops. The two middle bays
are surmounted by a gable with an attic window of three lights.
The gabled W. end wall has a weathered brick chimneybreast
flanked at attic level by two small oval openings, now blocked,
with moulded brick surrounds. The chimney-stack culminates in
a pair of diagonally-set flues decorated with arabesques in cement.
A similar chimney-stack with four flues serving the eastern
fireplaces has no such decoration. The N. elevation is partly
masked by a modern range; where exposed, the wall is rendered
and openings are modern. The gabled E. end has stone windows
in the upper storeys and moulded brick coping with a shaped
Inside, the western ground-floor rooms have intersecting
ceiling beams, now cased; when exposed they were seen to have
no mouldings. The centre room has an open fireplace with a
plain oak bressummer and lightly chamfered stone jambs. The
stairs are modern. The first-floor rooms are spanned by plain
beams resting on roughly shaped timber brackets. The roof has
four plain collar-beam trusses.
(15) Cottages (03061219), pair, of two storeys with brick
walls and thatched and tile-covered roofs, are of the late 18th
century. Each dwelling has a three-bay W. front, with a central
doorway and with casement windows in both storeys.
(16) Cottages (03051223), two adjacent, originally three
dwellings, are single-storeyed with attics and have brick walls
and thatched roofs. They date from late in the 18th century.
Wimborne All Hallows
(17) Bridge (02791242), of brick with ashlar coping, spans
the Allen with five equal segmental-headed arches. It is of the
early 19th century.
(18) Bridge (02451280), of brick, spans the Allen with a
semicircular central arch and smaller side arches of segmental
form. It is somewhat later in date than (17).
Wimborne St. Giles. (14) Mill House.
(19) Cottage (02951243), now divided into two tenements,
is of two storeys and has rendered rubble walls and a thatched
roof. It is of 17th-century origin and retains some windows with
moulded timber frames. Inside, the plan is of class J, and some
rooms have stop-chamfered beams.
(20) French's Farm (02801246), house, of two storeys with
brick walls and tiled roofs, is of the late 18th century.
Monkton Up Wimborne
(21) Manor Farm (01791358), house, of two storeys
with attics, has walls of timber framework, of ashlar
chequered with knapped flint, and of brick; the roofs
are slate-covered. The S. bay of the W. range comprises
substantial remains of a well-built early 16th-century
house. The N. part of the same range is probably of the
early 17th century; it was originally of timber frame
construction and it retains traces of an open-roofed hall.
Early in the 18th century a central chimney-stack was
built, the hall was chambered over and the walls were
refaced in brick. The E. range was added in the 19th
The W. front is in two parts, the N. part of brick, the S. part,
corresponding with the 16th-century bay, rendered. When the
rendering was removed in 1953 the wall was seen to be of timber
framework with later brick nogging. All windows in this and
in the other elevations have plain 19th-century sashes. The S.
elevation is mainly slate-hung, but the projecting chimneybreast
is carefully built of ashlar blocks chequered with knapped flint.
At the base is a chamfered plinth; at eaves level is a weathered,
hollow-chamfered and roll-moulded string-course. Higher, the
stack has weathered ashlar shoulders and above these it is of
brick. The N. elevation has no notable features. The E. elevation
of the W. range is masked by the 19th-century E. range.
AA-EE Position of roof trusses.
Inside, the S.W. room is spanned by a stout beam with double
ogee and hollow-chamfered mouldings ending in splayed stops;
the beam is supported on chamfered and shouldered wall posts.
Three heights of 17th-century oak panelling were removed in
1953. The fireplace surround is modern. In the chamber over
this room, chamfered and shouldered wall posts, plainer than
those below, support the cambered and moulded tie-beam of a
principal roof-truss. Removal of the plaster revealed that the
walls of the chamber were of stout timber framework with
braced angles and originally with wattle-and-daub nogging.
The W. wall had a window with moulded timber jambs,
but this was destroyed when the present sashed window was
inserted; only the jambs remain. The E. wall of the chamber
had a doorway with a four-centred head, now blocked up; it
probably led to an original staircase situated where the 19th-century stairs are now. In the S. wall is a fireplace with a four-centred timber bressummer with double-ogee mouldings
continuous on the ashlar jambs. The roof of the S. bay is ridged
at right angles to the rest of the range; originally it was gabled
on the W., but the S.W. corner is now hipped. The roof truss
with the moulded tie-beam has a steeply cambered collar,
chamfered on the under side. E. of the truss the roof retains two
stop-chamfered purlins on each side, chamfered wind-braces, and
six original common rafters pegged to the purlins; there is no
ridge-piece. The chamfering shows that the roof was originally
open to the chamber. The E. truss has two cambered collar-beams and studding.
In the northern part of the W. range the ground-floor rooms
are spanned by chamfered beams of c. 1700. The fireplaces have
been blocked and no noteworthy features are seen. Upstairs and
in the attics the roof retains five early 17th-century tie-beam
trusses in positions lettered AA to EE on the plan. The northernmost truss is some 8 ft. south of the present N. wall, the range
having been extended at some time, perhaps in the 18th century;
the tie-beam rests on and is braced to stout timber posts, now
embedded in 18th-century brickwork. Roof-truss BB has a
collar-beam with chamfered arch-braces, showing that it originally spanned a hall. The next roof truss (CC) retains studding
with wattle-and-daub infilling, proving that the hall continued
no further S.; it coincides with and has been cut through to make
way for the 18th-century chimney-stack. Between this truss and
the N. side of the 16th-century structure there is another
partition-truss (DD) with remains of studding and wattle-anddaub nogging; hence the space between the 16th-century
chamber and the upper part of the former hall appears to have
contained at least two attic rooms. The southernmost truss (EE)
rests on the N. wall-plate of the 16th-century structure.
(22) South Monkton Farm (02131325), cottage, of one
storey with an attic, has rendered walls and a thatched roof; it
is of the 17th century and has a 19th-century two-storeyed
extension on the S.E.
(23) Cottage (02031333), now demolished, was single-storeyed with an attic and had walls partly of banded flint and
brickwork, and partly timber-framed; the roof was thatched. It
was of the 17th century.
(24) Cottage (01851352), now demolished, was single-storeyed with an attic and had walls of brick and of flint, and a
thatched roof. It was of the late 18th century.
(25) Gazebo (04601106), of two storeys, is square on plan
and has rendered brick walls and a domical roof covered with
tiles and lead (Plate 32). It was built c. 1700, reputedly as a place
of contemplation for the 3rd earl of Shaftesbury. The E. side
has a plain square-headed doorway at ground level and a large
sashed window in the upper storey. The N. and W. sides have
similar windows; the W. side also has an oval ground-floor
window and a plain doorway giving access to a small cellar. The
S. side, without openings, bears a stone cartouche of the arms of
the 2nd earl (Ashley-Cooper impaling Manners).
(26) Woodlands Gate Farm (04870936), house, of two
storeys with brick walls and a tiled roof, dates from about the
middle of the 18th century. The S.W. front is of two bays with
a central doorway. An added N.W. bay is probably of the 19th
(27) Cottage (05591020), of one storey with an attic, with
brick and timber-framed walls and with a thatched roof, was
built about the end of the 18th century. Inside, the plan is of
class S and the main room is spanned by a chamfered beam with
(28) Cottages (05531032), two adjacent, now combined as
one dwelling, are single-storeyed with attics and have brick
walls and thatched roofs. The W. cottage dates from late in the
18th century; the E. cottage is of the early 19th century. Both
have class-S plans.
(29) Cottage (06180979), of one storey with an attic, has
walls of brick and of cob and a thatched roof; it dates from late
in the 18th century.
(30) Cottage (06570967), of one storey with an attic, has
brick walls and a thatched roof; it is of the late 18th century. On
the E. is a two-storeyed extension with a tiled roof.
Mediaeval And Later Earthworks
(31) Foundations (01221862) of a small building, some 400
yds. N.E. of Oakley Farm at the N. extremity of the parish, are
composed of flint and stone and appear to represent two rooms
with a paved yard adjacent. Associated pottery and glazed tile
fragments are of the 13th century (Dorset Procs., 72 (1950), 93).
(32) Platform (02391259), some 22 yds. by 9 yds., lying
about 250 yds. S.S.W. of (18), is the site of All Hallows Church;
it bounds the former churchyard on the N. and has itself been
much disturbed in the digging of graves. The former church
building, described by Hutchins as 'a mean fabric' (III, 602), was
demolished soon after the union of the old parishes of Wimborne
All Hallows and Wimborne St. Giles, in 1733.
(33) Mounds, Banks etc., near St. Giles's House (4), appear
mostly to be connected with the 18th and 19th-century landscaping of the park. A mound (03341114), 4½ ft. high and about
50 ft. in diam., marked on O.S. maps as a tumulus, is probably
spoil from the ha-ha which extends to the W. Of three mounds
(032114) beside the canal which joins the lake to the grotto (6),
two are 15 ft. and one is 40 ft. in diameter; none exceeds 2 ft.
in height. A slightly curved bank (03011168), 120 ft. long from
N. to S., 25 ft. wide and 5 ft. high, has no associated ditch. A
ditch or hollow-way shown on O.S. maps (038113) is 50 ft. to
60 ft. wide and 2 ft. to 3 ft. deep; it extends roughly N.—S. and
represents a former track, possibly older than the park.
(34) Deer Park, almost certainly mediaeval, occupies about
100 acres, much of it wooded, on and S.E. of Rye Hill (centre
043101). Most of the perimeter is still traceable as a substantial
bank with, here and there, remains of an internal ditch. The
park may be that of the lost manor of Philipston. (Dorset Procs.,
90 (1968), 244–6.)
(35) Deer Park and Ponds, probably the original park of
St. Giles's manor, lie E. of the present park (around 049109). The
park covers about 110 acres, N. and E. of Deer Park Farm, and
is bounded for the greater part by the remains of a substantial
bank and ditch. Within the park a chain of three ponds, now
largely dry, was formed by damming a small stream which
flows S.; although undated they appear to be integrated structurally with the park. (Dorset Procs., 90 (1968), 246–8.)
Roman and Prehistoric
(36) Iron Age and Romano-British Settlement
(01601775), on Oakley Down, associated with a trackway and lying among 'Celtic' fields (Group (85), p. 118),
is now almost completely flattened by ploughing
(Plate 78). It lies, at about 340 ft. above O.D., on a low
ridge some 500 yds. W. of the Roman road from Old
Sarum to Badbury Rings. Limited excavations have
been carried out by R. M. Puckle (1949–51) and
previously by A. R. Turing Bruce. Map opp. p. 102.
Air photographs (C.U.A.P., RC8 V223: N.M.R.,
SU 0217/2/99, 100; SU 0117/11/101–3) show that the
site consists of a four-sided enclosure, about 600 ft.
across and 9 acres in area, defined by a bank with an
external ditch. Within it numerous patches of darker
soil, some notably rectangular, appear to represent areas
of occupation. A track which leads through the enclosure from an entrance at the N. corner continues S.E.
towards the Roman road and presumably once joined
it, but ploughing has obscured the junction. The
alignment of the enclosure does not conform with that
of the 'Celtic' fields on E. and S., and the track appears
to lie over these fields, suggesting that the settlement
grew up some time after the fields had been laid out.
A boundary ditch leaves the N. corner of the enclosure
and divides into two arms which may be traced N.W.
for some 300 yds.
A section cut across the ditch of the enclosure on the S. side
showed that it was V-shaped, 10½ ft. across and 6 ft. deep. Four
Romano-British cremations, three of them in urns, and an
extended headless and armless skeleton were found in the filling.
Possibly the bank was fronted by a vertical timber revetment.
An almost identical ditch section was excavated on the N. side.
In the N.E. part of the enclosure a dished area, perhaps a hut
floor, yielded much Romano-British pottery including New
Forest ware, a bronze bracelet, part of an iron brooch, an oxgoad, nails and cleats. Immediately outside, on the N.E., a pit
6½ ft. deep contained Iron Age pottery in the lower filling and,
in the upper filling, much Romano-British coarse ware of the
3rd and 4th centuries, a fragment of roof-tile and a coin of
Constantine I. In the S. part of the enclosure four Iron Age pits
and a drainage ditch were found. (Dorset Procs., 71 (1949), 69–70;
72 (1950), 92–3; 73 (1951), 104.)
Coins of c. 250–350, brooches and 'iron weapons' have been
found in the area while ploughing, and pits have been noted;
several pits were lined with flints and one contained a headless
inhumation. Finds (in D.C.M.) include a brooch of La Tène I
type and a Roman enamelled disc brooch (Dorset Procs., 74
(1952), 109; also notes by A. R. Turing Bruce in D.C.M.).
Near-by barrows ((115) and another, unidentified) contained
secondary burials of Roman date.
(37) Platforms (03271515), near Bowldish Pond in the
extreme E. of the parish, appear to be the remains of a settle
ment, probably of Iron Age or Romano-British date. They cover
little more than an acre, facing S.W. on the lower valley side of
the R. Crane, but they have been extensively damaged by
ploughing. The site lies among 'Celtic' fields (Group (85)), and
air photographs (N.M.R., SU 0315/2) suggest that it is integrated
(38) Long Barrow (01461476), part of Drive Plantation Group
(Gussage All Saints (23–30)), is aligned S.W.-N.E. and is
crossed by a modern hedge. Ploughing has flattened the S.W.
end and has severely reduced the remainder. Formerly it was at
least 120 ft. long, 90 ft. across and up to 3½ ft. high.
Bank and Ditch (039138) near Nine Yews, and Ditch
(026156) on Bottlebush Down: see 'Celtic' Fields, Group (85),
Monuments (39–124), Round Barrows etc.
Eighty-five round barrows have been identified, the
majority in the N. part of the parish; among them is
the famous group on Oakley Down (94–124).
Remains of at least four barrows and a small enclosure, part
of the Knowlton Circles Group (Woodlands (29–65)), occur just
within the parish and S. of St. Giles's Park (Plate 79). They
appear as crop-marks on oblique air photographs (C.U.A.P.,
AQ 17, 20, 23) which do not permit the close estimate of
(39) Barrow (02971072), small.
(40) Barrow (03031074).
(41) Barrow (03041078), large.
(42) Barrow (03071067), small.
(43) Enclosure (03101075), rhomboidal, 80 ft. by 60 ft., with a
probable entrance at the N.W. corner.
Barrows (44–53), within or close to St. Giles's Park, lie on a
gentle W. slope of the Chalk, below the 250 ft. contour.
(44) Bowl (04101154); diam. 105 ft., ht. 8 ft.
(45) Bowl (04431185), much spread, probably by cultivation;
diam. 105 ft., ht. 4½ ft.
Barrows (46) and (47) lie close to the parish boundary with
(46) Bowl (04531206), damaged by cultivation, has a hole dug
into the centre; diam. 80 ft., ht. 9 ft.
(47) Bowl (04531213), in Drive Plantation, is now much
damaged; diam. about 75 ft., ht. 10 ft.
(48) Bowl (03781217), N. of St. Giles's Park, is enclosed in a
tree-ring and planted with trees; diam. 100 ft., ht. 4 ft.
(49) Bowl (03941217), 165 yds. E. of (48), is a flat-topped
mound planted with trees, but within arable; diam. 70 ft., ht.
5½ ft. Two large blocks of sarsen lie near the edge of the mound,
on N.W. and S.E.
Barrows (50–53) lie very close together, in a line extending
N.W.-S.E. beside the road from Edmondsham to Wimborne
St. Giles. They are covered with trees and undergrowth.
(50) Bowl (04081230); diam. 64 ft., ht. 7½ ft.
(51) Bowl (04101229), damaged by ploughing on N.E. side;
diam. about 55 ft., ht. 6 ft.
(52) Bowl (04121228), pared away by ploughing on N.E.;
diam. about 55 ft., ht. 6 ft.
(53) Bowl (04161227), reduced by ploughing on N.E.; diam.
about 55 ft., ht. 5½ ft.
Five barrows (54–58) lie in a scatter N. of Nine Yews, on a
N.W. slope descending to the R. Crane. They have been
incorporated into the surrounding pattern of 'Celtic' field
boundaries (Group (85), p. 118).
(54) Bowl (03511433), N.E. of Bottlebush Clump, has been
flattened by ploughing; diam. 48 ft., ht. under 1 ft.
(55) Bowl (03681439), 200 yds. E.N.E. of (54), has been
levelled by ploughing; diam. 45 ft., ht. under 1 ft.
(56) Bowl (04061411), under bushes against a modern hedge,
has been damaged by ploughing; diam. 75 ft., ht. 7½ ft.
(57) Barrow (04121412), just E. of (56) and completely levelled
by ploughing, appears as a ring ditch on air photographs
(N.M.R., SU 0314/4; C.U.A.P., V-DH 9); diam. about 90 ft.
(58) Bowl (04131434), near the valley bottom S. of Cranborne
Farm, lies within arable; diam. 68 ft., ht. 7 ft.
Three barrows (59–61), all levelled by ploughing, form part
of Drive Plantation Group (Gussage All Saints (23–30));
(59) Bowl (01281468), against the parish boundary with
Gussage All Saints; former dimensions: diam. 65 ft., ht. 2 ft.
(60) Bowl (01391468), 110 yds. E. of (59); former dimensions:
diam. 45 ft., ht. under 1 ft.
(61) Barrow (01421466) appears as a ring ditch on an air
photograph (N.M.R., SU 0015/6); diam. about 50 ft.
A scatter of seven barrows (62–68) lies between 250 ft. and
300 ft. above O.D. on the S.W. slope of a ridge, in the vicinity
of Drive Plantation and The Warren. Barrows (66) and (67)
form part of the Cursus Group (Gussage All Saints (31–40)).
(62) Bowl (01451491), much reduced by ploughing; diam.
86 ft., ht. 2½ ft.
(63) Barrow (01511514), just S. of The Warren and now
completely destroyed by ploughing; dimensions unknown.
(64) Bowl (01551514), 40 yds. E.N.E. of (63), is much reduced
by ploughing; diam. 100 ft., ht. 2 ft.
(65) Bowl (01641522), among trees in The Warren; diam.
90 ft., ht. 9½ ft.
(66) Bowl (01291521), in arable immediately S. of Drive
Plantation; diam. 65 ft., ht. under 1 ft.
(67) Bowl (01291528), in Drive Plantation; diam. 70 ft., ht.
(68) Bowl (01371557), E. of Wyke Down and just N.W. of the
Dorset Cursus (Gussage St. Michael (9)), has been much
ploughed; diam. 55 ft., ht. 3 ft.
(69) Bowl (03241502), S. of Bowldish Pond in the valley
bottom of the R. Crane, has been much damaged by ploughing;
diam. 60 ft., ht. 3½ ft.
Four barrows (70–73), aligned N.-S. in Blackbush Plantation,
lie at about 300 ft. above O.D., well down the W. slope of a
ridge near Water Lake Bottom.
(70) Bowl (03121571); diam. 73 ft., ht. 4½ ft.
(71) Bowl (03131575); just N. of (70), is much spread; diam.
about 45 ft., ht. 2 ft.
(72) Bowl (03131580), 60 yds. N. of (71); diam. 78 ft., ht. 4 ft.
(73) Bowl (03141587), 70 yds. N. of (72); diam. about 60 ft.,
ht. 1 ft.
(74) Bowl (03481629), at the N. end of Blackbush Plantation,
lies near the top of the ridge; diam. 45 ft., ht. 2½ ft.
Salisbury Plantation Group (75–82) consists of nine barrows,
one of them in Pentridge (24); they lie among fir trees at the
S.E. end of a low spur.
(75) Bowl (02841607), damaged by a track; diam. 45 ft., ht.
(76) Bowl (02851611); diam. 80 ft., ft. 7 ft.
(77) Bowl (02801611); diam. 65 ft., ht. 5½ ft.
(78) Bowl (02771617); diam. 40 ft., ht. 1 ft.
(79) Bowl (02641621), on the boundary with Pentridge; diam.
90 ft., ht. 12 ft. with a substantial encircling ditch. Sherds,
apparently of a barrel urn, found on the surface of the mound
suggest the presence of a secondary burial (O.S. Records).
(80) Bowl (02661624); diam. 68 ft., ht. 9 ft.
(81) Bowl (02741625); diam. 52 ft., ht. 6 ft.
(82) Bowl (02811630); diam. 60 ft., ht. 1½ ft.
(83) Bowl (02641682), much damaged by ploughing, lies 30
yds. E. of the Dorset Cursus and just outside Salisbury Plantation; former diam. 60 ft., ht. 1½ ft.
Three barrows (84–86) lie on top of the ridge of Bottlebush
Down, close to the Dorset Cursus; (84) and (85) are S.E. of it,
(86) is to N.W. All three appear to have been dug into in the
(84) Bowl (01911591); diam. 42 ft., ht. 4½ ft.
(85) Bowl (01941593); diam. 45 ft., ht. 4½ ft.
(86) Bowl (01761604); diam. 67 ft., ht. 5 ft.
Handley Hill Group (87–89) comprises five barrows near the
summit of the hill. Three of them are in a line and two of these
are in Gussage All Saints ((61) and (62)).
(87) Bowl (01491626), now almost levelled by ploughing;
diam. 30 ft., ht. under 1 ft.
(88) Bowl (01411628), on the parish boundaries with Gussage
All Saints and Sixpenny Handley; diam. 50 ft., ht. 5 ft. Excavation by William Cunnington yielded a cremation in a large
'barrel' urn, probably primary, accompanied by a smaller urn;
both were fragmentary. Two intrusive skeletons were also found
(Hoare, Ancient Wiltshire I, 243. Ant. J., XIII (1933), 448).
(89) Bowl (01531632), on the S. side of the road from Sixpenny
Handley to Cranborne, is nearly flattened by ploughing; diam.
30 ft., ht. under I ft.
Four barrows (90–93) lie on the N.E. slope of the ridge of
Bottlebush Down. Three of them were dug into by William
Cunnington (Hoare, Ancient Wiltshire I, 243).
(90) Bowl (01901642), with a clearly defined ditch, yielded
a primary cremation; diam. 58 ft., ht. 4 ft.
(91) Bell (01911645), partly damaged by ploughing, yielded
a primary cremation in a large urn, with beads of amber, shale
and 'horn', fragments of a bronze (Únetice) pin, and an incense
cup. The mound is 68 ft. across and 9 ft. high; the berm is 10 ft.
across; the ditch is 12 ft.–18 ft. across and 1 ft. deep.
(92) Bowl (01951648), among scrub, yielded a primary cremation; diam. 64 ft., ht. 4 ft. with traces of a ditch.
(93) Bowl (01811656), now almost levelled by ploughing;
diam. about 30 ft.
Oakley Down Group (map opposite, and Plate 78)
consists of thirty-one barrows (94–124) on the E. side
of the down, most of them lying in the angle between
the Roman road and the modern road from Salisbury
to Blandford; among them are six disc barrows. The
barrows occupy two spurs which slope gently to a dry
valley on the E. Possibly their siting is related to Wor
Barrow (Sixpenny Handley (29)), a Neolithic long
barrow visible on higher ground some 500 yds. to the
W. Many of the mounds were investigated by Sir
Richard Colt Hoare and William Cunnington at the
beginning of the 19th century (Ancient Wiltshire I,
236–43); some of their finds are in Devizes Museum.
Hoare's numbered plan makes it possible to identify the
mounds which he examined, except for two small
unnumbered barrows N.W. of the modern road; one
of these contained a disturbed interment and the other
contained a cremation (? Romano-British) with large-headed nails in a cist. There has been little subsequent
excavation. 'Celtic' fields (Group (85)) intrude into the
group, particularly on the N. side, and more recent
cultivation has damaged many of the barrows, especially
N.W. of the modern road. Two irregular elongated
mounds within the group are probably not barrows;
that at 02031737 is 90 ft. by 38 ft., formerly larger, and
4 ft. high; that at 02061760 is 62 ft. by 26 ft. and 1½ ft.
high. A slight mound at 02071769 is a 'Celtic' field
angle, not a bowl barrow.
(94) Bowl (01481698), now levelled by ploughing, lies just
S. of the modern road; diam. about 30 ft.
(95) Bowl (01591704), (Hoare No. 23), in which Cunnington
found a central cremation in an inverted collared urn. Recent
excavations (Dorset Procs., 92 (1970), 159–67) near the N. edge
of the mound have revealed a post-hole, interpreted as a cremation-pyre support; near it was a pit containing much cremated
bone and ash. The pit lay outside and was clearly earlier than the
very irregular barrow ditch. Many flint flakes were found in the
mound and ditch. Diam. 40 ft., ht. 1½ ft.
(96) Bowl (01661704), (Hoare No. 21) yielded a primary
cremation with charcoal and pottery in a cist, but it had been
previously disturbed. The mound has been damaged by ploughing. Diam. 40 ft., ht. 1 ft.
(97) Bowl (01701704), (Hoare No. 20) covered a primary
cremation with remains of an urn, 'linen' cloth, a grooved
bronze dagger, a bone pin and a bone pendant (Devizes Museum
Catalogue, 1964, Nos. 349–50; P.P.S. (1938), 102–3). Diam. 54
ft., ht. 6 ft.
(98) Bowl (01761704), (Hoare No. 18) yielded a primary
crouched interment associated with a perforated deer antler
(Devizes Mus. Cat., 1896, No. 198). More recently, two secondary cremations in urns and an unaccompanied inhumation have
been found just below the surface of the mound (Dorset Procs.,
72 (1950), 92). Diam. 70 ft., ht. 7 ft.
(99) Barrow (01611708), (Hoare No. 22), in the form of a low
elongated mound aligned S.W.-N.E., has been damaged by
ploughing. Three cremations, perhaps primary, were found: at
the N.E. within a cist; at the centre with an amber bead in an
urn; at the S.W. in a large urn accompanied by a pair of bone
tweezers. Dimensions of mound: 95 ft. by 40 ft., and 3½ ft.
high; no side ditches are visible.
Barrows, 'Celtic' Fields and Settlement Remains
Sixpenny Handley and Wimborne St. Giles
(100) Bowl (01671708), (Hoare No. 19) covered a primary
cremation with two perforated bone pins (Devizes Mus. Cat.,
1964, Nos. 379–80); diam. 48 ft., ht. 5 ft.
(101) Disc (01681711), (Hoare No. 17), damaged by ploughing
on the N.W. side, yielded a primary cremation wrapped in
cloth beneath an inverted collared urn (Devizes Mus. Cat., 1964,
No. 502). The mound is 36 ft. across and 3 ft. high; the berm
30 ft. across; the very shallow ditch and the low outer bank are
both 16 ft. across.
(102) Bell (01731713), (Hoare No. 16), beneath which evidence of cremation was found. The mound is 85 ft. in diameter
and 11 ft. high; the berm, 12 ft. wide, is surrounded by a very
shallow ditch 20 ft. across.
(103) Disc (01781713), (Hoare No. 13), has two mounds, one
at the centre and one in the S.E. Part of an amber bead was
found, but the barrow had been opened previously (Devizes
Mus. Cat., 1964, No. 475). The central mound is 28 ft. in
diameter and 2½ ft. high; the S.E. mound is 30 ft. in diameter
and 2 ft. high; the berm is 60 ft. across; the ditch is 18 ft. across
and 2½ ft. deep; the outer bank is of similar dimensions.
(104) Bowl (01841709), (Hoare No. 14), under which three
cists were found. One contained a cremation and charcoal;
another contained a cremation under an inverted urn and the
jawbone of a (?) cow; the third contained only ashes. A 'bucket'
urn was subsequently recovered from this barrow (Pitt-Rivers,
Excavations IV (1898), 180 and Pl. 305). Diam. 54 ft., ht. 5 ft.,
with surrounding ditch 12 ft. across and 1½ ft. deep.
(105) Bowl (01881707), (Hoare No. 15) yielded a skeleton
lying E.-W. Diam. 63 ft., ht. 5 ft.
(106) Disc (01931701), (Hoare No. 28), obscured by undergrowth and trees in Salisbury Plantation, is cut on the N.W. by
the Roman road. A skeleton was found. The mound is 35 ft.
across and under 1 ft. high; the berm is 50 ft. across; the ditch is
15 ft. wide and under 1 ft. deep; the outer bank is of similar
(107) Bowl (01771718), (Hoare No. 12), an irregular mound
in which nothing was found; diam. about 40 ft., ht. 1½ ft.
(108) Bowl (01761721), (Hoare No. 11), damaged by ploughing, yielded a cremation. Diam. about 45 ft., ht. 1½ ft.
(109) Barrow (01781724), (Hoare No. 10), in the form of a
low elongated mound aligned N.-S., has been damaged by
ploughing. It yielded three cremations, perhaps primary; that
in the centre was accompanied by an incense cup (Devizes Mus.
Cat., 1964, No. 442). Dimensions of mound: 65 ft. by 34 ft.,
height 2½ ft.
(110) Bowl (01841718), (Hoare No. 9), in which was found,
at a depth of 11 ft., a primary crouched interment accompanied
by a bronze riveted dagger, a bronze awl, a V-perforated shale
button, a shale pulley ring, three barb-and-tang arrowheads and
a flint fabricator. Also found, but not preserved, were a 'drinking
cup', perhaps another shale button, a fourth arrowhead and a
number of worked flints (Devizes Mus. Cat., 1964, Nos. 77–85).
A fragment of stone axe and pieces of antler were found in the
primary cairn. Near the top of the barrow were two secondary
inhumations, the uppermost with two 'drinking cups' at its head
and a cremation at its feet. Diam. 73 ft., ht. 6 ft.
(111) Disc (01911715), (Hoare No. 8), oval in plan to accommodate two mounds near the centre, is cut on the S.E. by the
Roman road. In the N.W. mound was found a primary cremation accompanied by a small bronze dagger, a bronze awl,
amber beads and space-plates; in the S.E. mound was a primary
cremation with a bronze awl, beads of amber and faience and an
Aldbourne cup (Devizes Mus. Cat., 1964, Nos. 407–13 and 433).
Both mounds are 35 ft. in diameter and 2 ft. high; the berm is
about 60 ft. across; the ditch is 16 ft. wide and 2 ft. deep, and the
outer bank is of similar dimensions.
(112) Disc (01821730), (Hoare No. 6) has two mounds, one
at the centre and another to S.E. The former had been opened
previously, but it appears to have contained a primary cremation
with an intrusive skeleton above it; the latter covered a primary
cremation in a cist. In 'a ridge' between the two mounds was
found a large urn containing a cremation with beads of amber
and faience. The central mound is 35 ft. in diameter and 2 ft.
high; the S.E. mound is 25 ft. by 20 ft. and under 1 ft. high; the
berm is 40 ft. across; the ditch is 15 ft. wide and 1½ ft. deep; the
outer bank is of similar dimensions.
(113) Disc (01881724), (Hoare No. 7) has two mounds; one of
them (unspecified) contained a cremation with amber beads; the
other had been opened previously. The central mound is 28 ft.
in diameter and 3 ft. high; the N.W. mound is 25 ft. in diam.
and 2½ ft. high; the berm is 45 ft. across; the ditch is 15 ft. across
and 1½ ft. deep; the outer bank is of similar dimensions.
(114) Saucer (01801753), now almost levelled by ploughing,
formerly consisted of a low mound 60 ft. in diameter, surrounded by a shallow ditch and a very low outer bank, both
about 15 ft. across. The barrow appears to lie over a 'Celtic'
field lynchet (Group (85)).
(115) Bowl (01831754), now levelled by cultivation, was
excavated by A. L. Parke in 1940 and 1950–1. It covered two
primary cremations in pits, one with a bronze awl and a stone
or pottery bead; above lay a deposit of unburnt human bones.
There were also found three secondary cremations beneath
inverted sub-biconical urns, and an intrusive cremation of a
child in a pit, the filling of which contained a coin of the house
of Valentinian I and a sherd of New Forest ware. From the
mound came five segmented glass beads and a coin of Constantine I. From a 'Celtic' field lynchet (Group (85)) which
encroached on the N.W. side of the barrow came a large
quantity of Romano-British pottery. (Dorset Procs., 72 (1950),
91–2; 73 (1951), 103–4; 75 (1953), 36–44. Finds in D.C.M.)
Diam. about 32 ft., ht. formerly 1½ ft.
(116) Bowl (01851755), adjoining (115) on the E., has been
flattened by ploughing; diam. about 30 ft.
(117) Bowl (01931755), now levelled by ploughing; diam.
about 40 ft.
(118) Bowl (01991756), (Hoare No. 2), now much spread by
ploughing, lies immediately N.W. of the Salisbury-Blandford
road. A primary inhumation was found at a depth of 9 ft. A
secondary cremation accompanied by lozenge-shaped bone
beads and a bone pin was found at 5 ft. A secondary inhumation
of a child was found at 4 ft. (Devizes Mus. Cat., 1964, No. 378).
Diam. 68 ft., ht. 4 ft.
(119) Bowl (02001755), (Hoare No. 3), cut away on the N.W.
side by the main road, covered a primary cremation in a collared
urn (Devizes Mus. Cat., 1964, No. 532); diam. about 40 ft., ht.
(120) Bowl (02021756), (Hoare No. 1), damaged on the N.W.
side by the modern road, yielded a primary crouched interment
at a depth of 10 ft. Near the surface was an intrusive pagan
Saxon female inhumation accompaned by a gilt button-brooch,
beads of glass and amber, two bronze rings and fragments of
iron (Devizes Mus. Cat., 1896, pp. 53, 54, 59). Diam. 45 ft.,
ht. 4 ft.
(121) Bell (02011752), (Hoare No. 4), yielded a primary
inhumation at a depth of 12 ft. and, 2 ft. above it, two further
inhumations with a small handled cup, a bronze dagger and a
shale bead (Devizes Mus. Cat., 1964, No. 463). More recently,
two secondary cremations (one in an inverted urn) and sherds
including the rim of a bucket urn were found near the surface,
in the side of the mound (Dorset Procs., 72 (1950), 92; 77 (1955),
151). The mound is 84 ft. in diameter and 10 ft. high; the sloping
berm is 12 ft. across; the ditch is 16 ft. wide and 1 ft. deep.
(122) Bowl (02031751), (Hoare No. 5), damaged and made
irregular by ploughing, adjoins the ditch of (121). In it was found
a primary cremation in a cist. Diam. about 38 ft., ht. 1½ ft.
(123) Bowl (02001763) has been levelled by ploughing, but is
visible on air photographs (N.M.R., SU 0117/10/106. C.U.A.P.,
RC8 V223). Diam. about 45 ft.
(124) Bowl (02031761), as (123); diam. about 50 ft.
(125) Rectangular Enclosure (02071732), on Oakley Down,
lies in the bottom of a dry valley just E. of the Roman road; it
is under rough grass and isolated in arable. Roughly square, it
measures some 70 ft. across overall and comprises a bank, 10 ft.
across and 1 ft. high, with an inner ditch of similar dimensions
surrounding a slightly raised interior. There is a possible entrance
in the W. side.