Last year our first donation drive was a complete success,
thanks to some wonderful people who helped us gain a security certificate and meet
some of the increasing web hosting costs. This year, that certificate needs to be
renewed and another round of hosting costs need to be supplimented. As the History
Files is a non-profit site it still needs your help. Please click anywhere inside
this box to make a small donation via PayPal so that we can continue to provide
highly detailed historical research on a fully secure site. If every visitor
donated just a penny then we'd cover a year's running costs in a day! Your support
is highly appreciated.
Target for 2019: £0£130
Gallery: Churches of Somerset
by Peter Kessler, 6 September 2019. Updated 19
SW&T (Taunton Deane) Part 6: Churches of Comeytrowe
to Norton Fitzwarren
Comeytrowe Baptist Chapel is the only
detached property in the middle of a row of houses on the southern
side of Comeytrowe Road, in the short east-west stretch of this
street before it reached the New Road junction. The chapel is marked
as such on the OS 25-inch map of 1892-1914, and was still there in
the 1940s-1960s period. Now known as Chapel House it is a private
dwelling of three bedrooms that appears to have undergone very much
The Parish Church of St Michael the Archangel,
Galmington lies at the south-western corner of the junction between
Pitts Close, Roland Close, and Henderson Close. The very modern-looking
church was built in 1986 as part of the Comeytrowe Centre, to provide
for the growing population of this area on the southern edge of Taunton,
a little way to the north of Trull. The building is described as being
bright and welcoming, also serving for community functions.
Galmington Lane Chapel used to lie on the
western side of Galmington Lane, around thirty metres north of the
junction with Galmington Road. OS six inch and 25-inch maps of the
1890s-1910s show it as a very small building with a footprint no
deeper than the modern house which replaced it (nearest the camera).
SW Heritage states that it was a corrugated iron and wood mission
church of 1892 for St George Wilton but was decayed and closed in
1969 and removed by 1982.
Taunton Deane Crematorium 'Memorial Chapel'
sits at the eastern centre of Taunton Crematorium, on the south side
of Wellington Road in south-western Taunton. The post-war chapel
sees its share of use in a crematorium that still has plenty of
space, unlike its crowded sister cemetery in the town of Wellington.
St Mary's Cemetery, which lies virtually opposite Taunton Deane
crematorium, is also largely full, but may be expanded pending
local council agreement.
Living Light Christian Church can be found
on the western side of Gypsy Lane, between Mountway Road and
Highfield in Bishop's Hull on the western edge of Taunton. A group
of church leaders in Taunton started meeting together for prayer and
fellowship in 2003. This grew during 2005 and 2006 to such an extent
that the group took on the name of B1 after a prayer in John
17:1. This group now extends to include fourteen church leaders from
Bishop's Hull Congregational Chapel sits
on the eastern side of Bishop's Hull Road, about sixty metres south
of the junction with Shutewater Hill. Today's Taunton United
Reformed Church has its roots firmly placed in the late 1600s when
local dissenters would meet in the town. In Bishops Hull, Nathaniel
Charlton established a congregation and in 1672 his home was
licensed as a Presbyterian meeting. The chapel followed in 1718, but
seemingly closed in 1972.
The Parish Church of St Peter & St Paul
Bishop's Hull is on Bishop's Hull Road, opposite Malthouse
Court. The earliest mention of the village itself comes from AD 750
where it is called 'Hylle'. The Assize Roll of 1327 calls it
'Hulle Episcopi' - the 'hill of the bishop' [of Winchester]. In 1120
Bishop Gifford transferred the tithes to Taunton Priory. The earliest
part of the church - the base of the tower - dates to the 1100s. Its
octagonal upper section was added in the 1200s.
In 1308 the bishop of Bath and Wells ordered the
prior to appoint a secular priest. A permanent living for the priest
seems to have appeared by 1447/8. The church originally consisted of
a nave with north and south aisles, side chapels, and tower. The
side chapels may have been chantries. In the early 1500s the church
underwent a major refurbishment. A new chancel was added in 1522,
and possibly the north chapel in 1530. In 1827 the building was
All Saints Church, Norton Fitzwarren,
is at the northern end of Garden Close, with Hilly Part to its
west and Norton Fitzwarren School alongside it to the east. Lying
at the centre of this former village on the western edge of Taunton,
it dates from the late 1200s and early 1300s. It has a late
thirteenth century three-stage tower made of squared and coursed
sandstone with ham stone dressings, plus a three-isled nave and
slate roof over this and the chancel.
Inside is a handsome 3:5 bay rood screen with
double doors. It is long, relatively low, fan vaulted, and canopied,
adorned with long projecting cornices to hold the loft. The nave
contains several fine, richly carved bench ends, and the stained
glass windows depict various saints. The church underwent
restoration work in 1851-52, with porch and chancel being rebuilt
and a vestry being added in 1866. The churchyard's south-west corner
is reputedly a former gypsy burial ground.
All photos on this page by P L Kessler. Former
Taunton Deane area church names and locations kindly confirmed by
South West Heritage Trust, with additional information from The
Chapels Society visit to Mid-Somerset, 28 September 2013, by
Peter Daniel, David Dawson, and Roger Thorne.