Our History

  • St. Mary's High Offley St. Mary's High Offley
     

St. Mary’s High Offley

 

High Offley sits on a rise with excellent views from the churchyard westwards into Shropshire and south towards the Shropshire Union Canal. Part of the north wall of St. Mary’s including the doorway is late Norman, dating from about 1200. The south arcade of five bays was built a little later in the 13th century. The base of the tower is late 13th century but the upper section is 16th or 17th century. The south porch is Victorian. The tower has five bells of which one is 15th century. Another, from 1601, has on it the prayer for Queen Elizabeth I:

God Save the church, our Queen and Realm
And send us peace in Christ.

“High Offley Church, St Mary, is an ancient Gothic fabric, neatly pewed with oak. It has an excellent organ, which was given by John Salmon, Esq, of London, a native of this parish. It has several monuments of the Skrymsher and other families, and a handsome one was erected in 1851 in memory of the late Bishop Ryder.”
Pevsner dates most of the church to the 13th century with some earlier Norman features and some from later periods. The core of the church dates from the 12th century, and features from the 13th century are still present, including the lower stages of the tower and the south arcade. Most of the rest of the church is from the 15th and 16th centuries and is Perpendicular in style, including the nave, chancel, and upper part of the tower. There was a limited 19th-century restoration. which included the addition of a south porch. Inside the church, the nave roof is “an outstanding and well-preserved work of late-medieval carpentry”, which includes bosses carved with heads and foliage. In 1946-9 three splendid stained glass windows were installed designed by the firm of William Morris & Co.

Christchurch Knightley

Christ Church was built in 1840 on land given by Lord Lichfield. The architect was Thomas Trubshaw and the foundation stone was laid by the Countess of Lichfield on the 14th January 1840. The Church cost £752 to complete and funded by the villagers and partly from the Diocese of Lichfield. The chancel extension, vestry and choir aisle were built in 1882 in memory of Major R. Hargreaves who lived at Knightley Grange. ChristChurch historically was part of the parish of Gnosall and was established to serve the outlying hamlet of Knightley.