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Piddletrenthide Churchyard, last day of May - Cemetery art and photography
Piddletrenthide Churchyard, last day of May
Churchyard, Piddletrenthide 1

A quiet churchyard with cottages to one side, fields to the other, in the green Piddle Valley.

Churchyard, Piddletrenthide 2

Hawker Memorial, Piddletrenthide Churchyard

Celtic cross, Piddletrenthide
Celtic cross in Arts and Crafts style - with very appropriate roundel of orange lichen.

Here rests in Christ
the body of John Edward
Bridge of the Manor House
Pydeltrenthide who died
Oct 19th 1888 Aged 67 Years

Note the genteel alternative spelling of the village name. ("Piddle" is English slang for urine - a lot of the villages along the Piddle Valley had their names changed to -puddle during the 19th century "for reasons of social decorum", but Piddletrenthide kept the old spelling).

West tower, All Saints, Piddletrenthide
All Saints, Piddletrenthide. The tower dates from the 15th century. The church was restored in 1853 by John Hicks, the Dorchester architect, who was later to employ the young Thomas Hardy as his assistant.

Most of the memorials in the churchyard are 19th century or modern. A few early headstones survive to the south of the church, but most are badly weathered and only two have legible inscriptions.

Dumberfield headstone, Piddletrenthide

Headstone to William Dumberfield, dating from 1646. This and the headstone beside it to Thomas Dumberfield, dating from 1616 and now sadly illegible, were said to have been the inspiration for the Durbeyfields in Hardy's Tess of the d'Urbervilles.

Chapman memorial, Piddletrenthide
Memorial looking strangely like the headboard of a rather uncomfortable bed.

NEAR this place
lieth the Body of John
Chapman of this Parish Gent
Who departed this Life July
the 9th 1703 Aged 64.

also lieth Elizabeth
Wife of the said John
Chapman Who departed
this Life March the 15th
1715 in the 64th Year of her Age.
She was the daughter of Walter
South late of Swallow Cliff
in the county of Wilts
Who lies interred...

HERE likewise lieth
Elizabeth the Wife of Samuel
Keate late of Yetminster Gent
Deceased who departed this Life
December the 20th 1738
Aged 66. She was the Daughter
of the said John and
Elizabeth Chapman.

Orange stone frame with panels of a more friable grey material inscribed with cherubs, a skull and long bones.

Detail, Chapman memorial, Piddletrenthide

Churchyard, Piddletrenthide 6

Churchyard, Piddletrenthide 4

Churchyard, Piddletrenthide 3

Churchyard, Piddletrenthide 5

Churchyard gate, Piddletrenthide

Current Location: Dorset, UK

6 comments or Leave a comment
bleodswean From: bleodswean Date: June 3rd, 2018 08:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
Really lovely photos. What a serene place and so much history.
puddleshark From: puddleshark Date: June 4th, 2018 06:36 am (UTC) (Link)
Thank you!

Incredibly serene. Most of the houses in the village are down in the valley, alongside the river, but the churchyard is tucked away on a little area of higher ground, safe from flooding, keeping a watch over the village...
slfcllednowhere From: slfcllednowhere Date: June 6th, 2018 09:10 am (UTC) (Link)
Beautiful! Reminds me of some ones I visited all around England when I was doing a program at Oxford.
puddleshark From: puddleshark Date: June 7th, 2018 07:29 am (UTC) (Link)

Yes, it's such a lovely churchyard - very green, very peaceful.

singeaddams From: singeaddams Date: June 6th, 2018 02:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
Piddle, snicker, snicker! (Is twelve.)

But what a beautiful place. I'm in love with that tower.
puddleshark From: puddleshark Date: June 7th, 2018 07:32 am (UTC) (Link)
You're not the only one snickering... I think all the inhabitants of Dorset enjoy the joke. There's even a local brewery that sells Piddle Ale.

Yes, it's a really nice example of a 15th century tower, with some particularly ferocious gargoyles.
6 comments or Leave a comment