Welcome to Chesterton & Kingston Parish

See local pictures

Chesterton & Kingston Parish

St. Giles Church - Chesterton

The Church was founded by Richard the Forester in the 11th Century and presented in Richard II’s time to the Barons of Kenilworth, by William Croc. It later came under the Abbots of Worcester, but by 1693 was under the Cathedral Church of Lichfield.

Chesterton & Kingston Parish

It is built of Limestone and Northampton stone, in the perpendicular style, but has been altered by successive generations. It was generally restored in 1862. The walls are three foot thick and have been buttressed up, externally. The most notable feature is the length of the embattlemented parapet, which runs the whole length of the Chancel. The square tower was built of old material in the 17th Century.

Plan of St. Giles ChurchThe history of Chesterton Church is closely linked to that of the Peyto family who are said to have come over with William the Conqueror. Although they had previously owned land at Chesterton, it was not until the middle of the 14th Century that they came to live in the village. They built their big house to the north west of the church and established the fish ponds, over which they had to cross on their way to worship. Their later and more stylish Manor House built on the hill to the north of the church was pulled down in 1802.

The Peyto’s were prominent men of their time. They included lawyers, soldiers and Members of Parliament. In the Civil War, Sir Edward Peyto supported Cromwell’s Parliamentarians, successfully leading the defence of Warwick Castle against the Royalists. The Peyto line ended in 1746 and the Manor and the Estate passed to the Verney family to whom they were linked by an earlier marriage. The Verneys are still the Patrons of Chesterton Church, through Lord Willoughby de Broke, 21st. Baron.

In Victorian times heating was from three open fires in the central aisle with an under floor flue leading to a chimney within the Tower.

For many years Chesterton was the Mother Church of the district, with coffins being carried from as far away as Bishop’s Itchington for burial. The registers date from 1538 and are now held in the County Archives.