Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:


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Statutory Address:

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

Dorset (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SY 68665 73530



SY6873 FORTUNESWELL, Fortuneswell 969-1/3/91 (North East side) 16/01/51 Church of St John


The building axis lies NW to SE, but the ensuing description takes the chancel as liturgical E. Anglican parish church. 1839 by Edward Mondey; late C19 chancel and organ chamber. Portland ashlar in small blocks, slate roof to nave, tile to chancel. A simple structure in Commissioners' Early English style. Broad unaisled nave, west tower, lower chancel, vestry at SE corner. West front has small lancet each side to nave, under raking moulding to blocking course brought to stopped ends under coping. West tower in 3 stages, the first two with diagonal buttresses in two offsets, and the top stage with chamfered corners, crowned by moulded cornice beneath high crenel- lations. In flush surrounds to deep plain chamfer a pair of plank doors in pointed arch, under lancet, and louvred lancets to bell stage, but clock to S face. Nave has four broad lancets, the first 2 with Y-tracery to original glazing, divided by plain buttresses with two weathered offsets, but set diagonally at ends. High plinth, plain eaves, coped gables, small metal ventilator at ridge. To right is projecting C20 vestry in similar detail, with entrance door in pointed arch, and with coped gable on kneelers over a lancet at the street end. The set-back chancel, added later in the C19, has a small lancet on the S side, and E end has plate-tracery 6-foil rose in plain gabled wall. The steeper pitch of the chancel roof cuts across the coped gable to the nave, in detail as at the W end. N side of the chancel is small dressed square block, but the nave wall, which is built close against rising ground, is in rubble. Interior: plain unaisled nave in 7 bays with queen-post roof trusses on wooden corbels. Plain walls with deep window embrasures. Chancel arch flanked to left by blind door, and to right by door to vestry. Chancel and sanctuary on 4 steps, with panelled reredos. Nave has west gallery carrying large Willis organ of 1896, from St. Paul's School, West Kensington, brought to St. John's in 1969. Pine pews, those to side aisles reputed to have been constructed by prisoners at The Verne. The plain lancets at the E end each side with stained glass; on S side of 1903, and to N, one signed C. Maile, Canterbury, 1971, and another, unsigned, of 1968, to the Mothers' Union. In the W tower a stone stair with iron stick balustrade and wrought-iron rail gives access to gallery. The church is of a simple dignity, reflecting minimal outlay by the Commissioners, but provides an important accent in the street. (Royal Commission on Historical Monuments: Dorset: London: 1970-: 249-50; Buildings of England: Pevsner N and Newman J: Dorset: London: 1972-1989: 343).

Listing NGR: SY6866573530


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Inventory of Dorset, (1970), 249-250
Pevsner, N, Newman, J, The Buildings of England: Dorset, (1972), 343


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: 23 Jan 2003
Reference: IOE01/09321/25
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Reg Perry. Source Historic England Archive
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