Fonthill Gifford

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Fonthill Gifford
Fonthill Gifford Holy Trinity.JPG
Holy Trinity parish church
Fonthill Gifford is located in Wiltshire
Fonthill Gifford
Fonthill Gifford
 Fonthill Gifford shown within Wiltshire
Population 120 (2001 census)[1]
OS grid reference ST934330
Unitary authority Wiltshire
Ceremonial county Wiltshire
Region South West
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town Salisbury
Postcode district SP3
Dialling code 01747
Police Wiltshire
Fire Wiltshire
Ambulance South Western
EU Parliament South West England
List of places

Coordinates: 51°05′13″N 2°06′32″W / 51.087°N 2.109°W / 51.087; -2.109

Fonthill Gifford is a village in Wiltshire, England. Its population has fallen from 493 in the 1801 Census[2] to 120 in the 2001 Census.

Detail from Andrews’ and Dury’s Map of Wiltshire, 1773

The current Church of England parish church of All Saints was built in 1864–66 to designs by the Gothic Revival architect T.H. Wyatt.[3] It replaced a neoclassical church built in 1747–49 near the parish boundary where the Hindon – Tisbury and Fonthill Bishop – Semley roads cross. This in turn was a replacement of an older parish church that stood near the stream in the north-east quarter of the parish close to the now demolished Fonthill House (see map).

Fonthill House was damaged by fire in 1624 or 1625 and was bought by Lord Cottington in 1632, who by 1637 had finished restoring it,[2] and may have used the services of Inigo Jones.

Around 1715, Francis Cottington put a classical facade on the house and removed the formal gardens. Between 1745 and 1753 William Beckford re-aligned the estate making the main entrances to the north and the south, he added a five arched bridge over the lake, placed a folly on the high ground to the west of the house and demolished the old parish church.[2]

Fonthill House burnt down in 1755 and was replaced with a new one, Fonthill Splendens, built for William Beckford, to the south of the old one. The design of the house was initially based on Houghton Hall in Norfork. Those involved in the rebuilding project included Robert Adam, Sir John Soane and James Wyatt, Andrea Casali J. F. Moon, Thomas Banks, John Bacon the elder. In the 1790s William Thomas Beckford interest moved from Fonthill House to Fonthill Abbey and in 1807 most of the house was demolished, although the west pavilion remained and was expanded during the 19th century most of it was demolished in 1921, but west service wing was converted into cottages which were demolished in 1975.[2]

Fonthill Abbey was an enormous mansion (between Fonthill Gifford and the nearby village of East Knoyle) in the style of a medieval abbey. This replaced a Palladian mansion, the only remaining portion of which, called the Pavilion, was leased by James Morrison, the millionaire draper and railway investor. The Morrison family later bought the estate and live there still.

Fonthill Winery (Now Teffont Wines) There has been a winery at Fonthill since 1963. This is thought to have started due to the Fonthill Spring Water that rises locally giving a pure source of spring water. The winery has vineyards that are very suited to the unique growing conditions that Teffont Evais possesses. This unique climate (an open valley) and geology (limestone) produces grapes that are particularly suited to white wines and sparkling wines.


  1. ^ "Area selected: Salisbury (Non-Metropolitan District)". Neighbourhood Statistics: Full Dataset View. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 15 June 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c d Crowley 1987, pp. 155–169.
  3. ^ Pevsner & Cherry 1975, p. 246.


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