St Peter, (Westhampnett)




A Church Near You (Church of England site for this church).


Unknown or not given.

Grid reference: 488050, 106200, View on: Google Maps, Open Street Map, Streetmap, National Library of Scotland Map or Oldmaps.


Currently there is no incumbent information available.


Earliest Register: 1584.


There are 3 baptisms in the OPC database.

1584 - 1880, Look up service offered

No baptism IGI batches known.


There are 7 burials in the OPC database.

1584 - 1880, Look up service offered

No burial IGI batches known.


There are 5 marriages in the OPC database.

1592 - 1880, Look up service offered - also Banns 1755 - 1880

No marriage IGI batches known.

Monumental inscriptions:

There are no monumental inscriptions in the OPC database.


There are 3 images of this church in the OPC database.

Building information:

Built: Unknown or not given.

Current use: Worship.

Harrison's description (1911):

ST. PETER. Restored in 1867 and 1876. Authorities agree as to the probability of this church having been erected about 700 A.D. (S. A. C., vol, xxi.) The chancel is of Saxon work; unfortunately the arch, constructed of Roman bricks, has been "restored" away, but the herring-bone work of Roman tiles still remains. Aisle and tower are Tr.-Nor., having a fine row of pillars; low-side windows, E.E., with marks (masons' or pilgrims') on sill of S. window. Under the belfry is a small chantry, with a niche at E; end; in chancel, double piscina under trefoil-headed arch; beautiful canopied monument to Richard Sackville and his wife. Font, octagonal (1660). In the churchyard, Bishops Gilbert, Durnford and Wilberforce are buried.


There are 2 documents concerning this church in the OPC database.


There are no books about this church in the Sussex OPC Bibliography.

There is 1 article about this church in the OPC Sussex Archeaological Collections Index.


The History of St Peter's, Westhampnett
Located adjacent to the former Roman road to London (called Stane Street), a stone church has existed on this site since about 710AD, not long after the arrival of St Wilfrid's mission to the lands of the South Saxons. Much of the fabric of the Chancel dates from this period being constructed from materials recycled from the ruins of the Roman city of Regnum. The south wall of the Chancel features a filled in Saxon window and typical Saxon "herring-bone" stonework. Early in the 13th Century the church was enlarged to its present size by the addition of a Nave and Tower. The central Saxon arch of the Nave survived until it was rebuilt in 1867. The Nave encorporates features of Norman and early English style, and the font is an example of rare Elizabethan date. The external appearance of the church was altered in the Victorian period with the addition of a Porch and Vestry, the present Bell Tower and the installation of an organ in the north wall of the Chancel. The Bell Tower has three bells, the eldest dated 1581. The stained glass East Window is by Clayton & Bell and is considered one of their best.ed in the churchyard are three former bishops of Chichester and members of the cricketing Lillywhite family. James Lillywhite was born in Westhampnett (1842) and who lived at Westerton in the parish and was the Captain of the professional England touring party to visit Australia in March 1877. The first match against Australia played in Melbourne is today recognised as the first "Test Match".
Contributed by Gill Shaw.

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