Chapel on the south side of Kingsley Avenue
Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1016488
Date first listed: 26-Jul-1954
Date of most recent amendment: 02-Dec-1998
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This copy shows the entry on 19-Feb-2019 at 14:34:50.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: Newcastle upon Tyne (Metropolitan Authority)
Parish: North Gosforth
National Grid Reference: NZ 24638 70116
Reasons for Designation
A medieval chapel is a building, usually rectangular, containing a range of
furnishings and fittings appropriate for Christian worship in the pre-
Reformation period. Chapels were designed for congregational worship and were
generally divided into two main parts: the nave, which provided accommodation
for the laity, and the chancel, which was the main domain of the priest and
contained the principal altar. Around 4000 parochial chapels were built
between the 12th and 17th centuries as subsidiary places of worship built for
the convenience of parishioners who lived at a distance from the main parish
church. Other chapels were built as private places of worship by manorial
lords and lie near or within manor houses, castles or other high-status
residences. Chantry chapels were built and maintained by endowment and were
established for the singing of masses for the soul of the founder. Some
chapels possessed burial grounds. Unlike parish churches, the majority of
which remain in ecclesiastical use, chapels were often abandoned as their
communities and supporting finances declined or disappeared. Many chantry
chapels disappeared after the dissolution of their supporting communities in
Chapels, like parish churches, have always been major features of the
landscape. A significant number of surviving examples are identified as being
nationally important. The sites of abandoned chapels, where positively
identified, are particularly worthy of statutory protection as they were often
left largely undisturbed and thus retain important information about the
nature and date of their use up to their abandonment.
North Gosforth Chapel is an example of a medieval chapel which also contains earlier Roman material. In addition the monument contains a number of well- preserved medieval gravestones.
The monument includes the remains of North Gosforth Chapel situated in
an open space on the south side of Kingsley Avenue. The open space is
surrounded by a modern road and residential properties. The chapel is Listed
Little survives of the chapel above ground but the visible remains include the
nave and chancel foundations and a number of gravestones. The remains of the
nave and chancel stand to a height of one course above a plinth course. The
nave and chancel have a total length of 20.5m. The nave is 7m wide and has two
west walls, one representing a shortening of the nave by 3m. Only the plinth
course of the nave wall is visible to the west of the inner west wall. The
nave has a doorway in its south wall. Part of the north wall of the nave has
been rebuilt, as evidenced by the lack of the plinth course. The north nave
wall tapers inwards at the chancel end. Within the nave are a four column
pedestal, a stone trough and a stone slab. The chapel contains reused Roman
material and at one time contained a Roman altar stone.
The chancel is 6m wide and has slightly narrower walls than the nave. There is
a doorway in the north wall.
Externally there are a number of graves. Two gravestones, one plain and one
with a sword motif, are situated by the south doorway of the nave. Another
group of graves is found to the east of the chancel, which include dated
graves from the 17th century and two medieval gravestones, one marked with a
cross and the other with the lower portion of a sword and spade.
The earliest reference to the chapel is in 1256 when it was used as a place of
sanctuary. The Surtees family were patrons of the church in the 14th century.
The last minister of North Gosforth Chapel is recorded in 1604. It was used
for burial in the 18th century. The first edition Ordnance Survey 1:2500 map
depicts the chapel in an oval enclosure 60m by 40m.
Two notice boards and a telegraph pole are excluded from the scheduling,
although the ground beneath them is included.
MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
Legacy System number: 32056
Legacy System: RSM
Books and journals
Welford, R, A History of the Parish of Gosforth, (1879), 19-22
Holmes, S, 'Archaeologia Aeliana' in Recent Investigations At The Ruined Chapel of North Gosforth, , Vol. 2, IX, (1883), 205-210
Tomlinson, W W, 'Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries Newcastle on Tyne' in North Gosforth Chapel, , Vol. 2, VIII, (1899), 227
This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
End of official listing