Cowplain beginnings: The Parish of Saint Wilfrid


This is what part of Cowplain looked like in the 1920s during the time in which the new, long awaited Church of Saint Wilfrid was to be built. Previously, those villagers wishing to worship at the Parish Church would have made the long climb to All Saints at Catherington.

Permission to build a ‘Chapel of Ease’ was granted in 1921 and fundraising was begun on September 10th. 1923 for what must have seemed the enormous sum of £2,450, and Viscount Woolmer laid the foundation stone the following month. Although the building was dedicated by the Bishop of Southampton on April 6th. 1924, it was to be administered by the parish of Catherington until 1929. The site had been secretly donated by Mr. A.E. Edney of Five Heads, purchased for the sum of £700 from Sir Dudley Clarke-Jervoise who owned the Idsworth Estate.