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Buried remains of medieval church and churchyard at Dembleby House Farm

Reference Name MLI60833

Buried remains of medieval church and churchyard at Dembleby House Farm

Buried remains of the medieval church and churchyard of St Lucia at Dembleby House Farm


PRN 60833
St Lucia's church was mostly Norman - Early English, and was demolished in 1867. It was rebuilt to the east of the original site (TF 0435 3773) and the Norman chancel arch was incorporated into the Victorian church (PRN 65023).{1}{2}{3}{4}

The raised areas may mark the boundary wall to the churchyard. One length of stone wall is visible in the garden pond to the cottage. This encloses the surviving gravestones and the site of the church. {5}

Dembleby village appears in the Domesday survey, but the date of origin of the church is unknown. The earliest identified architectural features date to the Norman period, but parts of the fabric and foundations may be earlier. The churchyard lies to the west of the farmhouse, about 1m to 2m above the level of the neighbouring farmyard, on the north-facing slope of an east/west valley, and has remained largely unaltered since becoming disused in the 19th century. The remains of the churchyard boundary consist of an earth-covered stone wall visible on the east side and represented by a low bank on the west. A low earth-covered bank in the north of the churchyard represents the remains of the medieval church, following its demolition in 1867. Nineteenth century illustrations show a nave slightly wider than the chancel, with a probable medieval south doorway, and post medieval features including a low-pitched roof with a wooden bell-cote at the west end, and square-headed windows. The post medieval alterations to the nave suggest a period of relative prosperity in the late 16th or 17th century. The church was in good repair in 1602, with 60 communicants recorded in 1616. In the 17th and 18th centuries, the manor was held by the Pell family, who erected a number of family tombs in the church. A 1556 reference documents two broken altar stones being reused in the floor. The church fell into disuse in the 1860s, and by 1867 was in a state of bad repair. The churchyard at this time was described as full, but continued to be used until the 1880s. The timber shed and building materials abutting the south-east corner of the churchyard, all gravestones and the post-and-wire fencing are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath these features is included. The outbuilding overlying the base of the churchyard wall is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath it is included. The monument includes the buried remains of the medieval church and the churchyard in which it lies, but does not include those parts of the church which were rebuilt into the later church and now lie outside the scheduled area. {7}

The church and its incumbents are discussed by Trollope. {8}

1 Index: Aunsby and Dembleby SMR cards. AUNSBY AND DEMBLEBY. TF 03 NW: R
2 Index: Ordnance Survey. Aunsby and Dembleby O.S. cards. AUNSBY AND DEMBLEBY. TF 03 NW: 10
3 Bibliographic Reference: Pevsner, N., and Harris, J.. 1964. Buildings of England (first edition). Lincolnshire. P 250
4 Bibliographic Reference: Pevsner, N. and Harris, J., with Antram, N.. 1989. Buildings of England (Second Edition). Lincolnshire. P 250
6 Bibliographic Reference: Foster, C.W. and Longley, T.. 1924. Lincolnshire Domesday and Lindsey Survey. PP 114, 122, 181
7 Scheduling Record: English Heritage. 11/10/2001. Buried remains of medieval church and churchyard at Dembleby House Farm. SAM 22772
8 Bibliographic Reference: Trollope, Edward. 1872. Sleaford and the Wapentakes of Flaxwell and Aswardhurn in the County of Lincoln. pp 358-59

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Last updated: 06-December-2017 13:53:19

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