Following his Grand Tour of Europe, the 4th. Earl Bathurst -1790-1866, built St.Luke's Church for the villagers of Frampton Mansell as a chapel of ease to save the walk to the Parish Church at Sapperton, some two miles away.
Features: The building has the appearance of one of the alpine churches of northern Italy; it sits, appropriately enough, on a hillside with views across the Golden Valley.
It has a Norman style door; a belfry with a wood shingle roof and an attractive rounded Apse - all roofed in natural
Once inside, one is immediately aware of uncluttered space and the wide isle. All of the windows are of stained glass;
All the windows in the Nave are of geometric design - and of particular note is the triple west window where the afternoon sunlight has the effect of throwing a multi-coloured design onto the exceptionaly wide isle - much to the delight of bridal processions!
Amongst the altar linen are two frontals presented to the church by Countess Lilias Bathurst - wife of the 7th.Earl; The Festival frontal, worked by her Ladyship, is Jacobean in design and of pastel colours with gold thread:the second was given in memory of her daughter Meriel Graham; it is of red brocade and has a fine needlework panel depicting Mary and the infant Jesus.
1844: The Church was consecrated by *The Lord Bishop of Gloucester and Bristol, Bishop James Henry Monk, on Friday 25th.October. The newspaper account in the Gloucestershire and Wiltshire Standard of 29th.October reads as follows:
Consecration on Friday; the bishop consecrated a beautiful church, built at the sole expence of the Earl Bathurst,
N.B.The Bishop had also consecrated St.John's Church at Cinderford on Wednesday 23rd of that week.
♦ During the years 1836 - 1897 the Diocese was combined with Bristol.
Further stories of note in the same newspaper that week were:
The Queen and Prince Albert opened the new Royal Exchange in London.
Coach accident: On Tuesday evening the 'Beaufort Hunt' coach was entering Cheltenham from Cirencester, the pole broke, and the horses became unmanageable, galloping down High Street at a furious rate. The coachman was thrown off,but did not sustain any material injury. The horses continued their career with increased speed until they arrived opposite Mr.Turnbull's when one of them came violently in contact with the lamp iron by which it's leg was broken and it was obliged to be killed. None of the passengers received any injury.
Twenty-nine individuals were committed for trial at Leamington, on Tuesday, charged with an attempt to take unlawful possesion of Stoneleigh Abbey, the seat of Lord Leigh. - one wonders what their grievance was !
First Baptism 1844 December 18th William, son of William and Ann Selby.
First Marriage 1847 November 29th Richard Latham and Sarah Hobbes.
First Burial 1844 November 15th Sarah Moselder, aged 79 years.The census of 1851 lists 254 persons living in Frampton Mansell and, bearing in mind the number of houses which
The Friends of St. Luke
In 1979, due to lack of use and the fact that there was a great deal of general decay of the fabric, proposals were
St.Lukes Perpetual Fabric Fund
During the renovation period, the detached vestry building was sold, together with a small parcel of land, under an
Following completion of the major structual work, the Church was re-dedicated at an Evensong Service, on Sunday 13th. May1984, during which the Archdeacon of Cheltenham The Very Revd Eric Evans - also a 'Friend of St.Luke' preached the sermon.
Frampton Mansell appears in the Domesday book and is shown under the land held by Robert of Tosny in Glowecscire -Gloucestershire as follows:
In Bisley hundred Robert also holds Sapperton and Frampton (Mansell). 5 hides in one and 5 hides in the other. Vlf (3rd son of King Harold - defeated at Hastings) held them. In lordship 7 ploughs;l7 villagers and 9 smallholders with 10 ploughs. 13 slaves; 2 mills at 6s; woodland (Frampton Common) 1\2 league long and2 furlongs wide. Value of these two manors together before 1066 £14 now £16. '
In the reign of King Edward III the following were show as eligible to pay taxes in 1327:
Willo Maunsel iiii s
s represents shillings and d pence.
N.B Could it be that Rico de Chirinton was in today's terms Richard of Cherrington?
In 1759 a hoard of Roman coins was found at Frampton Mansell: details of which are described in Samuel Rudder's A New History Of Gloucestershire' 1775.
The village of Frampton Mansell is situated in the south Cotswolds on the south side of the Golden Valley through which runs the River Frome, the Severn/Thames Canal and the main railway line from London to Gloucester. The land rises steeply to some 500 ft.within the confines of the village boundaries - and this rise in altitude is therefore reflected in the very steep inclines found in the lanes radiating from St. Luke's Church, which stands in a prominent position in the centre of the village. If one stands at the top of the upper steps leading down to the church, one can look through thebell openings of the tower, out across the valley beyond.
The village buildings dating from before the mid 1900's are all built of local Cotswold Limestone and a good proportion are roofed with Cotswold stone tiles.
The oldest b~ilding is said to be Lower Manor, close by the railway viaduct - of the William and Mary period 1689-94,
The village seems to have changed very little over the years leading up to the 1939-45 War, when a new airfield
The Thames/Severn Canal
Proposals to build a navigable waterway between the rivers Severn and Thames were first put before Parliament in the
'for the making and maintaining a Navigable Canal from the River Thames, or Issis, at or near Leachlade,to join and communicate with the Stroudwater Canal at
In 1783 Robert Witworth produced a new map at the scale of 1" to 1 mile, which still exists today, marking the line of the new tunnel and the Company set about purchasing the land.
The Times reported the completion of the canal as'the grandest object ever attained by inland navigation'.
Sadly, much of the canal structure throughout the Golden Valley has fallen into decay and almost disappeared in
Railway through the Valley
The Act for the Cheltenham and Great Western Union Railway was obtained in 1836. This was only three years after the first prospectus for the Great Western Railway was issued. The timing indicated the keenness of thepeople of the Frome valley, supported by the inhabitants of Cheltenham and Gloucester, to be connected by rail to London.The line from Swindon to Kemble, and then on to Cirencester, was opened in May 1841. Squire Gordon of Kemble House did not want his property defiled by a railway passing through it - but was "bought-off" by apayment of £7500 on top of the price of his land. Lord Bathurst was in favour of the railway, and charged only £200 per acre for his land. The Rev. T Neve of Pool Keynes was concerned about the possibility of the neighbourhood being "filled once a fortnight with the
Although Cheltenham residents wanted a train service to London, they were not happy about the proposed "great way
Brunel surveyed a route which had no severe gradients, apart from a short stretch at Chalford where the valleyis narrow. By the end of 1841 shafts had been cut and headings driven for the tunnel at Sapperton.However, the financial position became so serious that the GWR took over the Union Railway. Two tunnels were then bored 45 to 90 feet above the original headings, at a considerable saving in cost, the combined length being shorter by about one third of a mile. This resulted in the ruling gradient being increased from 1 in 330 to 1 in 60.
By summer 1844 the stretch of line from Stonehouse to Sapperton Tunnel was two thirds completed and ballasted,
The railway (built to a broad gauge of 7') was opened to Gloucester in May 1845, but Cheltenham was not reached
Brimscombe became the home for expensive assistingengines, banking freight trains, but piloting (on the front) passenger trains. One wonders what cost savingthere would have been had the original route been maintained. The first passenger engines on the line were"single wheelers" with the 2-2-2 wheel arrangement (similar to the illustration), while the goods trains were handled by 0-6-0's.
The Frampton Mansell viaduct (12 spans of 30') was originally built in wood. Apparently this was encased in brick when it began to deteriorate. Our steeply inclined occupation bridge is said to have three different names.Jackdaw Bridge if you live in Chalford, westley Bridge to the inhabitants of Frampton Mansell and Skew Bridge as seen from Oakridge. There was a signal box at Frampton Crossing No 1 in 1884 which was removed many years ago,but the one at Crossing No 2 (with its 8 levers) lasted until September 1965.
It is said that Queen Victoria coined the name "Golden Valley" on one of her Autumn trips along the line, but this does not appear to have been authenticated.
On the fourth of October 1843 George Dratsy was in Sapperton Tunnel cleaning a hole in which gunpowder had been placed. It exploded causing him to lose an eye. Although there are records of fatal injuries during the line construction, these do not appear to have been as numerous as with many similar contemporary projects.
On the eighth of September 1851 an excursion train left Cheltenham for London in connection with the Great Exhibition. It consisted of 12 coaches (4 wheeled). 8 more were added at Gloucester, and a further 3 at Stroud.By this time there were around 1200 passenger on board. More joined at Brimscornbe, where the pilot engine wasattached at the front. When the train left Sapperton Tunnel the driver found he had lost half his coaches. Thedriver of the following mail train (Harry wilkinson) sawthese coaches coming towards him. He threw his locomotive
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