Dorset OPC


Dorset OPC

Shapwick Parish lies in the Hundred of Badbury, its name derives from the Saxon {Sceap+uuic} DB 1086, meaning sheep village.  In 1238 recorded as Shepwyk OE  It was the smallest of the four Manors in East Dorset and pre-dates the Norman period.   The Manor and the other three were seen as one unit, and before 1066 they were known as King Edwards Land, they paid no tax and were counted as one and therefore no separate accounts exist.  Shapwick is near the River Stour with the Church of St Bartholomew of Norman 12c date with a square tower restored over the centuries.

It has a peal of three bells one of 1570. The North chapel has a Norman Arch and two 16c ones.  The font is very worn as are the pews.  The church is a Benefice in the Archdeaconry of Dorset. The village is located half way between Wimborne and Blandford on the {B3082}.  Sturminster Marshall, is on the opposite side of the Stour.  The village centre has an old Stone Cross now a Memorial to the men of WW1-2.  The area is agriculture and farming, in 1800 the inhabitants were 409 and now 197.  Two mills for corn and grain existed here.  In 1818 James Alexander founded a school for 80 children.  William Wake born here 1657, d1737 became Archbishop of Canterbury, his father a wealthy landowner here in the 1630s.  The age of Shapwick is older than Saxon times and the archaeology of the area gives an idea of this.   At the top of the village are Badbury Rings, a prehistoric three tiered Iron Age Earthworks.  Artifacts found date from the Roman 6-7c AD and part of the Roman Road known as {Ackling Dyke} is still to be found.  The Medieval Crawford Bridge is located near the River Stour and White Mill Bridge. Parish Registers start 1654.

Village Centre & Cross

The White Mill

All photographs on this page courtesy of Mr J P Allen

The post of Online Parish Clerk (OPC) is currently vacant
If you would like to volunteer for the role, please contact the OPC Project Co-ordinator
Contributions of additional resource materials for the site are always welcome

Parish Registers Baptisms 1654-1812 1813-1850 [Kim Parker]
Marriages 1654-1837 [Kim Parker]
Burials 1654-1812 1813-1875 [Kim Parker]
Bishop's Transcripts Baptisms 1731-1837 [Ann Preston]
Marriages 1731-1813 [Ann Preston]
Burials 1731-1848 [Ann Preston]
Census 1841
Wills Will of Thomas Christopher 1719 [transcribed by Michael Russell]
Bond of Elizabeth Christopher 1675
[transcribed by Michael Russell]
Other records Monuments in the church
Photographs Further photographs of the parish courtesy of  Peter Clarke, also a village sketch circa 1907.
Maps The 1891 Ordnance Survey maps of the parish can be seen at the old-maps site, just enter 'Shapwick' under place search.
  For modern location maps visit:-

The Old School House

The Crawford Bridge


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