Donhead St Mary
|Donhead St Mary|
|Donhead St Mary shown within Wiltshire|
|Population||1,155 (in 2011)|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Fire||Dorset and Wiltshire|
|EU Parliament||South West England|
Donhead St Mary is a village and civil parish in southwest Wiltshire, England, on the county border with Dorset. The village lies about 2 1⁄2 miles (4.0 km) east of the Dorset town of Shaftesbury and stands on high ground above the River Nadder, which rises in the parish.
In the south of the parish, on the A30 Salisbury-Shaftesbury road, are the village of Ludwell and its neighbouring hamlet of Birdbush; Charlton hamlet is south of the road, and to the north is the dispersed hamlet of Coombe, comprising Higher Coombe, Middle Coombe and Lower Coombe.
Castle Rings, an Iron Age hillfort, is in the far north of the parish. A Roman road between Bath and Badbury Rings ran north-south through the parish, past the future sites of St Mary's church and Ludwell village.
Donhead St Mary and its neighbour Donhead St Andrew were once part of a single Donhead estate which belonged to Shaftesbury Abbey. The boundary between the two parishes was drawn in the 11th century and each had a church in the 12th century.
At Charlton a National School was built close to St John's church in 1842, replacing an earlier school; it closed in 1876 after the opening of a new school at Ludwell, which continues in use as Ludwell Community Primary School.
Another National School was built near St Mary's Church in 1875, replacing a school of 1840. This school closed in 1922 and its pupils transferred to Ludwell. The building became the village hall.
The Church of England parish church of St Mary the Virgin was standing in the 12th century, when it was small and without aisles. The south aisle was added in the late 12th century and in the 13th the nave gained a clerestory; the south porch was added in the 14th. Most of the tower is from the 15th century.
There was a chapel at Charlton from the 14th century. In 1839 it was replaced by the church of St John the Baptist, built near the main road to be accessible from Ludwell and the Coombes. The church is in Neo-Norman style with a two-tower west facade.
A Wesleyan Methodist church was built in the south of Donhead St Mary village in 1837, and rebuilt in 1868. Part of the Shaftesbury and Gillingham Wesleyan Methodist Circuit, and later the North Dorset Circuit, the church closed in 2007 and is now a private home. Primitive Methodists built a chapel at Ludwell in or before 1861, which closed c. 1965.
Donhead St Mary is a civil parish with an elected parish council. It falls within the area of the Wiltshire Council unitary authority, which is responsible for most significant local government functions.
- "Donhead St. Mary Census Information". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 30 March 2014.
- Freeman, Jane; Stevenson, Janet H (1987). Crowley, D.A., ed. "Victoria County History - Wiltshire - Vol 13 pp138-155: Donhead St Mary". British History Online. University of London. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- Historic England. "Donhead Hall with attached walls and terraces (1146082)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- "Charlton National School, Donhead St. Mary". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- "Ludwell Community Primary School". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- "National School, Donhead St. Mary". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- "Donhead St Mary Village Hall". Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- Pevsner, Nikolaus; Cherry, Bridget (revision) (1975) . Wiltshire. The Buildings of England (2nd ed.). Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. pp. 221–2. ISBN 0-14-0710-26-4.
- Historic England. "Church of St Mary (1318792)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- The London Gazette: . 19 February 1980.
- "Benefice of St Bartholomew". Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- Historic England. "Church of St John (1318813)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- "Wesleyan Methodist Church, Donhead St. Mary". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- Davies, Helen (6 April 2008). "Methodist Chapel, Donhead St Mary, Wiltshire, £275,000". The Sunday Times. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- "Primitive Methodist Chapel, Donhead St. Mary". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- The Donheads community web site
- "Donhead St. Mary". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 30 June 2016.
Media related to Donhead St Mary at Wikimedia Commons