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Amazing architectureLink with famous peopleInterpretation of site available

Welcome to the ancient, hillside church of St John the Baptist.

The first church was built by the Normans shortly after 1100 AD; in spite of the need to extend, repair and replace over the centuries, parts of the original Norman church can still be seen today.

Much of the village and its surrounding land was owned by the Wentworth Estates as late as the 1960's. Thomas Wentworth, 1st Earl of Strafford was sentenced to death. He was convinced the King would save him, but the king failed to act and Thomas was beheaded in 1641. In 1895, during work to the chancel floor, workmen found the bones of a man with a severed vertebrae to the neck, leading to the thought that Thomas had in fact been secretly buried here.

The church has Norman arches and other interesting stonework. There are three grooves in the stone bench to the right of the porch, where it is thought archers used to sharpen their arrow heads and crossbow bolts.

Inside the church are some wonderful monuments, including one to Charles Newby, who died in 1701 featuring cherubs, scrolls and a skull! Under the west window is a rectangular, stone coffin lid, dating from about 1200.

Revd Gatty, who was Rector from 1888 to 1914 was friends with the composer Vaughan Williams. He was a frequent visitor to the rectory, from where he took inspiration. It is believed that during one stay he wrote ‘Linden Lea’, one of his more popular songs. Gustav Holst was also a regular visitor.

If you know anything more about the heritage of this site and would like us to include it here please contact us.


Keyholder noticeGenerally accessible to wheelchair usersParking at Church or nearbyAccessible by public transport

Address: Doncaster Road, Hooton Roberts, Rotherham

Opening Times: Please contact us to arrange a visit.


Directions: A1(M) J36. Follow signs to Rotherham. In Hooton Roberts, church on right.

Grid Reference: SK 483 971 GB Grid


The text has been written by volunteers from the site, more information can be found when you visit in person.


Hooton Roberts St John the Baptist Rotherham Grand North HODs 2010


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