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Castleton - Goathill - Oborne - Poyntington

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The civil parish of Castleton takes its name from Sherborne Old Castle, former residence of the bishops of Sherborne, currently managed by English Heritage. Castleton was originally a borough founded in the 13th Century, with its own court and market, rights and liberties. The original parish was only 28 hectares, and included the Old Castle, the Church of St Mary Magdalene and the houses immediately around the Castle. Many of these houses were demolished when the railway was opened in 1860 and Waterloo Terrace in Oborne Road was constructed to house those made homeless. In 1897 the civil parish boundaries were redrawn. The Church and the houses became part of Sherborne, whilst Castleton Parish, including the Old Castle, was extended as to almost encircle the town of Sherborne. The civil parish now covers 1,976 hectares and has 53 dwellings with 111 electors. There are 19 distinct settlements within the parish, and the largest of these consists of 7 properties. The old St Cuthbert's Chancel on the London Road, once Oborne's parish church, is within Castleton's boundary. The parish includes the farm at Wyke with its medieval Tithe Barns.

Castleton: 1976 ha

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Goathill is a small parish of 122 hectares that abuts on the eastern end of Sherborne Castle Estates. The industry is farming and the parish consists of just 8 homes. Most of the residents would probably regard Milborne Port, in Somerset, rather than Sherborne, as the nearest local centre. Goathill was also in Somerset, but was transferred to Dorset in 1896 for civil purposes, although ecclesiastically it has remained part of the Diocese of Bath and Wells, rather than the Diocese of Salisbury.

Goathill: 122 ha

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Oborne, physically, is an unusual village. It could be describes as having three distinct elements. About mile north of the A30 is probably the village centre, as it has a Victorian parish church, and clustered around it several former farm houses, an Edwardian gentleman's residence that is now a hotel and restaurant, a splendid Victorian rectory and the oldest house in the village, the 16th century former village school. Most of these buildings lie within the village's conservation area. To the south, as the village road winds past the water meadow to the main road, there is a ribbon of 12 post-war houses that are now a mixture of owner-occupied and Housing Association properties. Along the southern side of the A30 is the 1533 St Cuthbert's Chancel. This is what remains of the old parish church and was restored by the then rector in the 1930's and is now managed by the Historic Churches Trust. To the east of the chancel up the hill towards the railway bridge there are a few cottages, some dating back to the 18th century, and a Grade II listed thatched farmhouse. The 2004 electoral roll shows there are 44 properties within the parish including 5 that are outside the main cluster of the village. This is not remarkably different from the figures in the 1801 census (Oborne is one of the few communities fortunate to have such a record still extant.

Oborne: 241 ha

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In 1928, the Rev. A. H. Bell described Poyntington as an "exceedingly picturesque and pleasing Parish." Now, nearly 80 years later, a period of steady evolution, it can still be described as such. In 1896 it was transferred from Somerset to Dorset, the boundary lying along the top of the beautiful Poyntington Hill which overlooks the headwaters of the River Yeo. The only buildings remaining from the medieval village are the Court House and the Manor which overlook the centre of the village together with the 14th C All Saints Church, the Old Rectory, the Tithe Barn and farm buildings. The parish consists of 58 properties, of which 20 lie within the conservation area in the centre of the village. There are also developments on the south-east side leading to Hillside Farm, on the north side and in Washingpool which is a mix of owner-occupied and Housing Association properties.

Poyntington: 414 ha

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Please contact the Parish Clerk:

Rose Edwards, Townsend Cottage, Poyntington, DT9 4LF

Tel: 01963 220491 - Email:


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