The Church of St Peter stands in the
centre of the village and has been part of our history since the middle ages. There
has been a church on the present site in Ilton since about 800 AD. Records from
that time are insubstantial until a proper church register commences in 1642.
The current building is early 14th century and is officially described as
"an edifice of stone in the Early Decorated and Perpendicular style."
By 1882 the Tower and its lead-case wooden spire with a clock was in a very
dilapidated state and was dangerously leaning over a yard out of the
perpendicular. Appeals to the Wyndham Estate, the largest employers in the
village, and the Ecclesiastical Commissioners were met with only sympathy. It
was the parishioners who funded the strengthening of the foundations, and the
top part of the tower was rebuilt with brick in its present square shape.
St Peter's is one of only four churches in England to retain the medieval tradition of using "housling cloths" at the celebration of Holy Communion. The others are Westminster Abbey, Wimborne Minster, and Hexham Abbey. The word "housel" is Anglo Saxon, is used in the canons of King Edgar (960 AD) and by Spenser and Chaucer to mean "offering" or "obligation." The cloths were used to catch the crumbs of the blest bread when it was broken. We use them to shroud the sanctuary rails.
The Parish Council maintains the Churchyard which is a closed Churchyard. More detail of the Church can be found here:
Pictures of the Churchyard can be found on this independent website at this link:
Contact details for the Church:
Reverend Phil Denison 01460 259155
Churchwarden: Kate Cameron - Tel: 01460 55308