The church is open during daylight hours on every day throughout the year.

History

A Medieval Church was established on the site of the present Church in the 12th century. At that time Hinton St. Mary was a Lay Brothers settlement belonging to the Abbey of St. Mary in Shaftesbury. Being located alongside each other, the history of the Church and that of the Manor House are inextricably linked. The dissolution of the monasteries around 1535 marked the end of Shaftesbury Abbey. At this time, in addition to the Church, there were three main buildings and the Manor House was subsequently built on the site of a dormitory.

St Peter's Church Hinton St Mary
St Peter's Church Hinton St Mary

In 1846, the Church was completely rebuilt in the Perpendicular style and this incorporated the tower constructed in the middle of the 15th century. 2 bells were hung and these are still in good working order.

Parish records go back to 1581, the originals are held in the County Records Office in Dorchester and transcripts can be viewed on Ancestry.co.uk.

The pulpit is 18th century and the font probably 13th century. Within the Church there are a number of interesting monuments, a particularly important one being the memorial to Thomas Freke who died in 1642.  There is also a group of stained glass windows designed by Tom Denny and installed for the Millennium.

 

War Memorials.
There are two war memorials in the Church. One lists fourteen men lost in the First World War and the second smaller one two who died in the Second World War.

Only a little is known about the WW1 individuals. Some have family connections with Hinton St. Mary others have relatives in Sturminster Newton and a few come from other Dorset villages.. As shown below they served in many different regiments. Recently, Janet Bolton has been carrying out some research and is keen to build on the records which she has recently put together. A file containing these is now in the Church and if anyone has any relevant information please contact her on 01258-472300.

 

First World War

Corporal ARTHUR BALL
8TH Devon Regiment
Killed in Action. 25th September, 1915. Flanders

Private   MAURICE BALL.
1st Devon Regiment
Died of wounds. 2nd July, 1915.  Flanders

Sapper BERTIE BREWER.
Royal Engineers
Killed in Action   Flanders.  6th July, 1917

Corporal ALFRED CHARLES CREW.
4TH Dorset Regiment
Died 11th July, 1916 in Mesopotamia

Private ARTHUR GORDON FISH.
New Zealand Forces.
Died February 1st, 1918, aged 29

Trooper. GEORGE INNES.
1st Lovat Scouts.
Died 4th November, 1915.  Egypt. Aged 25

Private ROBERT JAMES
4TH Dorset Regiment
Killed in action.  Flanders. 1st November, 1916.  Aged 30

Private WILLIAM GEORGE KING.
5th Gloster Regiment

Private ARTHUR WALLACE LANCELY KING.
Australian Imperial Forces.
Died 23rd July, 1916

Gunner GEOFFREY WILLIAM SAMWAYS.
Royal Garrison Artillery
Died of wounds.  Flanders.  7th May, 1917

Private ARTHUR HERBERT SCOTT.
10TH Hants Regiment
Died 21st August 1915 at Gallipoli, Aged 24

Private CHARLES HENRY SCOTT.
6th Wilts Regiment

Lance Corporal VICTOR JAMES STACEY.
Army Service Corps.
Died 21st August, 1916.  Flanders.  Aged 28.

Trooper GEORGE ROSE TOPP.
Queens Own Dorset Yeomanry
Returned wounded. Died at home. 16th July, 1915, aged 24

Second World War

Pilot Officer GEORGE ALBERT INNES.
R.A.F.
Missing from patrol over North Sea. 15th August, 1943, aged 25 years.

Private LEON VICTOR JAMES WARREN.
5TH Batt. Dorset Regiment
Killed in Action. Normandy. 16th July, 1944, aged 21 years