St Peter & St Paul's Parish Church

There has been a church on the site of St. Peter's and St. Paul's, Cosgrove, for nearly a thousand years, though little is left of the original building and it is far from proven whether there was any sort of building before the Normans came.

The building that we have to-day consists of a Chancel, Nave, Aisle (on the North or left-hand side as you face the altar) and a tall square Western Tower.

The Chancel is the only part of what is accepted to be the original Norman building which still stands, and this is discernable from the outside only by reason of the characteristic decoration about the windows and roof edges, though this deduction should be approached with some caution. The East wall of the Chancel can, nevertheless, be dated with some certainty at about 1180 A.D., and from the outside remains of a triple window with the characteristic round arches and dog-tooth motif of which the Anglo-Normans were so fond are easily to be seen. The windows in the Eastern Wall, that is, the wall behind the altar are of the 14th Century, although the original stained glass has long disappeared.

April 1st 1845
St Peter & St Paul's Parish Church
Original Norman decoration

The entire church is built of the local rubble stone, and roofed with hand-made tiles of some antiquity, care being taken to preserve these and to match them where some had fallen into decay in the 1930's. The parapet on the South side of the Nave bears the date 1586, and it would appear that the three large three-light windows in this wall were put in at about this time. There is some evidence to suggest that this was a partial rebuilding of part of the church damaged by an outbreak of fire at that date, but the precise nature of the fire, whether deliberate arson or accidental conflagration remains obscure. In the North aisle, visible from the outside of the church, is an extremely clear example of a doorway of the period 1260 - 1300, complete with pointed arch and triangular moulded decoration. Why this was blocked off is a mystery, but it may have had something to do with the former existence of a gallery within the church. It is fairly certain that the Nave as a whole dates from not later than the first half of the13th Century.
John Bridges's 1666-1724:
The History and Antiquities of Northamptonshire. 1719 Cosgrove "The church, dedicated to S. Peter and St. Paul, consists of a body and north aisle leaded, a chancel tiled. At the west end is an embattled tower, with a stair case at one angle of it; in the tower are five bells. On the south side the church is a porch tiled. On the coping of the church, facing the south,is cut in stone this date 1586; and the same date is on an ordinary stone within side , near the west end of the body of the church. The register is dated in 1558.

Click on red area to see the Church Tower
Click on the plan to see
the exterior features

Click on the plan to see the Interior of the Church

Click the plan to see individual windows

Click the plan to go to each monument

Click the plan to go to each brass

Click the diagram to find out about the bells

To reach the Benefice website,
please search South Cleley

Cosgrove Church - Miscellaneous Records
1291 - 1972 including Glebe Terriers

Beryl was 90, Mabel was 93 and Graham wouldn't say when they shared a birthday on 12th August 2015

Wolverton Express 11th November, 1927

Outing: the choir of Saint Peter and Paul church, to the number of 28, accompanied by the Rev. and Mrs. J. Stockton and Mr. Stockton Jr., Visited Northampton by motor saloon on Saturday, and attended a performance of Ben Hur.  Miss G. Atkinson, who made the arrangements, also entertained the party to tea afterwards.

Wolverton Express 14th October, 1932


Harvest thanksgiving services at the Parish Church on Sunday were conducted by the rector, the Rev. H N C Hewson, and his son Mr A. Hewson.  Mr. C Compton was at the organ.  Ivy and Virginian Creeper decorated the scaffold poles, the roof of the church undergoing repairs.  The harvest gifts of fruit and vegetables were sold on Monday, the proceeds of the festival being equally divided between the Northampton General Hospital and the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution.

Wolverton Express 2nd November, 1934

Cosgrove Parish Church

A harvest thanksgiving service was held at the Cosgrove Parish Church on Thursday evening, 25th October, and the festival was continued over the following Sunday.  The Thursday service was the first to be held since the electric lights had been installed in the church.  The sacred building had been tastefully decorated by ladies with harvest gifts, among which was placed a jug of water.  The Rev. E J Fenn, of Castlethorpe, conducted the Thursday evening service, whilst the Rector, the Rev. J. Hewson, had charge of the Sunday Services.  There were large congregations.  The gifts of fruit and vegetables were sold at the Rectory on Monday evening and the proceeds, together with the offertories at services, will be equally divided between the Northampton General Hospital and the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution.