Hodnet ChurchThe church is a Grade I listed building. Much of the nave of the Norman church, in existence at the time of Domesday, still survives. Note the semi-circular stone arch above the arch of the doorway reconstructed in 1705. From that point, looking east along the south aisle you see a step which marks the extent of the Norman building as is the south wall to this point. The windows were modified in 1846.

In the fourteenth century, the Norman church was lengthened beyond the step to provide a new and much large chancel. This area now houses the organ and the churchwardens‘ chest of 1603. The great north aisle was also built in the fourteenth century, alongside the old Norman church, as was the west tower. The door to the tower sits inside a magnificent arch of continuous stone mouldings. The tower is octagonal in shape and the only one in Shropshire. It is thought that it was constructed by the same stonemasons who built Caernarvon Castle.

Few alterations were made to the fabric of the church from that time until 1846 when a great elaborate restoration took place.

A long arcade divides the two aisles, two piers are of fourteenth and others are of nineteenth construction. The beautiful large stained glass window behind the holy table was constructed to commemorate Mary Heber and another window behind the organ was constructed to depict the evangelists and is the work of the well known Shropshire artist David Evans.

This window has become famous with the story of the Holy Grail of King Arthur legends and brought to current public interest through the book and film "The Da Vinci Code". The sponsor of the window was Thomas Wright and from a story written by the ancestor of his wife, Robert Vernon, he created a modern day mystery of great interest.

The organ, was moved to this area in 1883 and restored in 1979. The pews were made from the old panelled oak ceilings, with flowered bosses, in 1821. At that time the roofs were replaced and have collar-beams. Cast iron gutters and downspouts were replaced in 2006 with the help of funding from English Heritage.

Tiled floors decorate both old and new chancels. In the current north aisle area they are to commemorate the Vernon family, who were Lords of the Manor in the sixteenth century. In the old chancel the tiles are dedicated to Bishop Reginald Heber, some showing initials, "RH"

To the left of the holy table is the Heber-Percy Chapel built in 1870. The pulpit dates from the eighteenth century, whilst the stone font has several Norman characteristics but is probably a seventeenth century imitation.

There are eight bells in the tower, six installed in 1769 and two trebles were added in 1947. The upper ringing chamber was constructed at that time leaving the choir vestry on the ground floor.

Hodnet has been a very important village in North Shropshire since Anglo-Saxon times, 8th to 10th century, and it is believed that there was a church there in that period of history. Unfortunately there is no remnant of such a building.

Following the time of the Norman conquest in 1066 the church was founded and given to Shrewsbury Abbey (c1083) and is mentioned in the Domesday Book(1086). The Abbey held the church until it was dissolved in 1540.

Until its dissolution, Shrewsbury Abbey was patron of the living and the earliest recorded Rector was Henry (1190-1194).

Before 1420 the church was dedicated to SS. Peter and Paul, afterwards it was dedicated to St. Luke.

Below are a number of pictures of the exterior of St. Luke's Church.
To see large views in a separate window just click on the thumbnail.

From the northeast

Main Path

Porch Entrance

Rector's Vestry

14th Century Octagonal Tower

Lytch Gate

Below are a number of pictures of the interior of St. Luke's Church.
To see large views in a separate window just click on the thumbnail.

The North Aisle

The South Aisle

Tower Archway

Entrance Door

Heber-Percy Chapel

The Font

North Aisle Window


South Aisle Window

Wardens' Chest

Register Table

Display Bookcase

GR: 361209,328613

HODNET is a village about 5 miles southwest of Market Drayton, north Shropshire and less than a mile north of the A53 Newcastle/ Shrewsbury Road.

Maps showing Hodnet
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