Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Date of most recent amendment:
Statutory Address:


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Statutory Address:

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

North Hertfordshire (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
TL 24732 27932


GRAVELEY CHESFIELD TL 22 NW 4/3 Church of St. Etheldreda 9.6.52 (formerly listed as Ruins of Church of St Etheldreda, Clayfield)


Ruined church. C13 or early C14, SE chapel mid C14, dismantled 1750 by licence of Bishop of Lincoln, ruins consolidated in 1980s. Flint rubble walls with clunch dressings, chapel walls have many pebbles. Unroofed. External plastering remains on some walls, internal plaster has traces of painting to simulate masonry on N and S walls of nave. A large rectangular church, internally 50ft x 18½ft, of nave and undivided chancel, with angle buttresses. Added SE chapel of equal height, internally 21ft x 13ft, with diagonal corner buttresses, and E wall in line with the E wall of the church. Chapel floor at present ground level but church nave floor buried by about 1½ft. W gable walls of church and chapel stand to full height, N and S walls of nave, and W half of S wall of chapel also, NE angle of chancel is nearly complete, but walls elsewhere are reduced to ground level and have been marked out with consolidated walltops. The standing walls have putlog-holes at 3 levels with clunch surrounds. Wide, 2-centred, N and S doors to nave with continuous external chamfer, scroll-moulded external drip, and internal door checks. Long bar-slot in N wall in E jamb of doorway. Remains of jamb and sill of a N and a S window, and a tumbled section of wall lies within the chancel. Tall narrow 2-lights W window has continuous splay-stones in the head but has lost its central mullion. Stubs of tracery show it had cinquefoil heads to the lights and a quatrefoil above in the head. Similar but narrower doorway in middle of W wall of chapel has continous chamfered jambs with doorcheck, but a pointed segmental rear arch and exposed threshold. Single-light narrow pointed cinquefoil window in remaining half of S wall. Straight joint between W wall of chapel and S wall of nave. Slate tablet set on floor of nave inscribed, 'SAINT ETHELDREDA/BY BIRTH PRINCESS/BY MARRIAGE QUEEN/BY CHOICE ABBESS/630 - 679/HER PARISH CHURCH/FOR THE PEOPLE OF/ CHESFIELD MANOR/DOUNE RUINATED/AND PLUNDERED 1750'. A stone coffin was noted in a hole in the chancel by RCHM (1911:93) and VCH (1912:90). Statue outside W door of chapel a standing figure of St. Etheldreda on an inscribed plinth by Mary Spencer Watson 1982. There is documentary reference to a chapel at Chesfield manor in 1216 which may have preceded the church for the deserted medieval village of Chesfield the ruins of which remain. (RCHM (1911)93: VCH (1912)90: Kelly (1914)105: Pevsner (1977)149: inf Mr. George Seebohm).

Listing NGR: TL2473227932


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

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Legacy System:


Books and journals
Doubleday, A, The Victoria History of the County of Hertford, (1912), 90
Pevsner, N, Cherry, B, The Buildings of England: Hertfordshire, (1977), 149
'Kelly's Directory' in Kelly's Directory, (1914), 105
Inventory of the Historical Monuments of Hertfordshire, (1910)


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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Date: 15 Jul 2001
Reference: IOE01/04771/02
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Ron Walker. Source Historic England Archive
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