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Former Chapel now Private House

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Former Chapel now Private House

Postby Will Mundy » Thu Feb 06, 2020 7:45 am

Hello,

I’ve recently discovered the final resting place of my x3 great grandparents, Joseph and Anne Herbert. They both died in 1911, and were buried at Christmas Common in Oxfordshire. Christmas Common being a very small hamlet, I had hoped to plan a visit and see if the headstone for my ancestors survived!

Unfortunately I discovered the Chapel that was built is now a private house with headstones scattered in the grounds. Does anybody know if there is anyway of finding out if the headstone is still there and also about trying to see the grave?


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Re: Former Chapel now Private House

Postby meekhcs » Thu Feb 06, 2020 10:06 am

I have the same situation in Dorset, albeit with a distant relative and I must admit I have not tried to view it, but details were recorded if the stones involved before the chapel passed into private hands. I would hope that if you spoke to the local ministry they could help you, or you may find the local Fam Hist Group has details. You may not be able to visit but maybe a photo could be arranged? I am sure you wouldn’t be the first to ask.


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Re: Former Chapel now Private House

Postby Templ4r » Thu Feb 06, 2020 10:13 am

When I lived near Huntingdon, there are a few redundant churches that have been sold off and are now private residences. I stopped off at one and talked to the owners who were working in the garden.

I asked about people looking round and they were quite happy as long as they didn't just turn up. They suggested people should write to them with your phone number AND a SAE (out of politeness) and they would reply with a contact phone number and make a mutual time to visit. If you don't know what the house is called then address to "The Old Church" usually finds its way via the Postie...

You just have to remember, some people aren't as interested in your family history as you are and you have to respect that.
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Re: Former Chapel now Private House

Postby RoseR » Thu Feb 06, 2020 11:28 am

My husband’s grandmother is buried in the grounds of the old Baptist Chapel in Biddestone, Wilts which is now a private house. The graveyard is behind a fence with a gate for access. The Parish Council confirmed that access would always be possible to the graveyard.
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Re: Former Chapel now Private House

Postby phsvm » Thu Feb 06, 2020 12:40 pm

Will - you're local aren't you? Why not pop over to Christmas Common and have a look. Peer over the fence or knock on the door. The worst that can happen is that the residents tell you to go away. You never know they may be interested to hear about the individuals whose headstones they have in their garden.

If nothing else there's a good pub there, a great area for a walk and amazing views of the Red Kites soaring over the Chilterns :lol:
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Re: Former Chapel now Private House

Postby Artognou » Thu Feb 06, 2020 6:54 pm

I was going to suggest seeing if there might be a record of the plot, and giving them a knock as well, they might be very nice people who wouldn't mind letting you in for a quick nose.
And, as phsvm said, it's a wonderful place to spend a few hours just taking in the scenery (and a lovely pub or ten), because you can see Wittenham Clumps from there, the Ridgeway (a few minutes from my front door!) and Brill Hill as well, I believe!
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Re: Former Chapel now Private House

Postby phsvm » Thu Feb 06, 2020 6:58 pm

Artognou - The Ridgeway's a few mins from my door too! But I think further along it as I'm the other side of Wittenham Clumps. Small world.
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Re: Former Chapel now Private House

Postby Artognou » Thu Feb 06, 2020 7:03 pm

I meant to add that the other possibility would be that they could have buried at St Leonard's in nearby Watlington, apparently that was why the chapel was built, so the residents of Christmas Common didn't have to walk the two miles down.
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Re: Former Chapel now Private House

Postby Artognou » Thu Feb 06, 2020 7:06 pm

phsvm - I liveon the edge Wantage, but not too far from Letcombe Regis.
Definitely a small world!
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Re: Former Chapel now Private House

Postby meekhcs » Thu Feb 06, 2020 7:15 pm

And to put my 6 eggs in I was a couple of miles from Brill Hill when I lived in Oxfordshire!!


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