Place:Whatley, Somerset, England

Alt namesChantrysource: hamlet in parish
Lower Whatleysource: hamlet in parish
TypeParish (ancient), Civil parish
Coordinates51.226°N 2.383°W
Located inSomerset, England
See alsoFrome Hundred, Somerset, Englandhundred in which it was located
Frome Rural, Somerset, Englandrural district in which it was located 1894-1974
Mendip District, Somerset, Englanddistrict municipality covering the area since 1974
source: Family History Library Catalog

NOTE: There is also a hamlet named Whatley in the parish of Winsham in South Somerset.

the text in this section is based on an article in Wikipedia

Whatley is a small rural village and civil parish near Frome in the English county of Somerset. The hamlet of Lower Whatley is to the south of the village and the hamlet of Chantry lies 1 mile to the west.

The parish was part of the hundred of Frome and the Frome Rural District (1894-1974). According to the UK census of 2011, the parish had a population of 245.

The village gives its name to Whatley Quarry, which lies to the northwest of the village. It is said to be one of the largest in Europe. It is owned by Hanson plc and has been the object of protests against its impact on the environment.

Chantry Park is Grade II* listed: The Chantry is a neoclassical villa built c. 1825 to the design of Bath architect John Pinch the elder. The Chantry Estate and school were established by the family of James Fussell (1748–1832), an iron magnate operating the Old Iron Works, Mells in Vallis Vale between Mells and Great Elm.


Historic Descriptions

1822 - Somersetshire delineated by Christopher & John Greenwood

A parish in the hundred of Frome, 3 miles W. from Frome -, containing 77 inhabited houses, and 79 families, 40 of whom are employed in agriculture. The church is dedicated to St. George, and consists of a nave, chancel, and south aisle, with a tower at the west end surmounted by a spire. The living is a rectory, in the deanery of Frome; Rev. T. Williams, incumbent ; instituted 1812. Population, 1801, 304 — 1811, 347 — 1821, 354.

1875 - Somersetshire edited by Edward Robert Kelly

WHATLEY is a parish and village, 118 miles from London, 3 south-west from Frome railway station, in the Eastern division of the county, hundred, union and county court district, deanery of Frome, Wells archdeaconry, and diocese of Bath and Wells, situated on the Bath and Wells turnpike road, on high ground, in a pleasant dry situation, diversified with hill and dale. The church, supposed to have been dedicated to St. George, is an ancient stone building, and consists of chancel, nave, north and south chapels, with vestry on the north side, quadrangular tower with 5 bells, and four pinnacles, and a lofty octagonal spire rising from its summit, and south porch; the chancel was restored in 1857, and the other portions of the church in 1870: in the south chapel, on an altar tomh, is a recumbent figure of one of the Servington family; there is likewise a remarkable Hagioscope: the east window and two others in the chancel are stained: it is paved with encaustic tiles, seated with open benches to hold 115 people. The register dates from the year 1672. The living is a rectory, yearly value £223, with residence and 18 acres of glebe land, in the gift of John Francis Fortescue Horner, esq., and held by the Rev. James Henry Moore, M.A., of University College, Durham. There is a National school for boys and girls, in which a Sunday school is held. The charities are £2 14s. yearly. The Wesleyans have a chapel here. In this parish extensive remains of an ancient Roman villa exist, which evidently formed the head-quarters and rallying-point of a numerous body of their troops; and the word vallis, used to denote that magnificent vale between Whatley and Frome, is of Roman origin. In the year 940 Edmund, King of the West Saxons, gave this manor to the church of Glastonbury. The monks thereof held it at the Conquest, and were lords paramount until the dissolution of their houses. John Francis Fortescue Horner, esq., is lord of the manor; John H. Shore, esq., and the Rev. James George C. Fussell, of Chantry, are principal landowners. The soil is clayey, and the subsoil is various, resting on limestone, which predominate here. The land is chiefly in pasturage for dairy purposes. The acreage is 1,209 : rateable value, £2,617; the population in 1871 was 406.

Research Tips

General Somerset Tips

  • The Somerset Heritage Centre (incorporating what was formerly the Somerset Record Office and the Somerset Local Studies Library) can be found at its new location at Langford Mead in Taunton. It has an online search facility leading to pages of interest, including maps from the First and Second Ordnance Survey (select "Maps and Postcards" from the list at the left, then enter the parish in the search box).
    The Heritage Centre has an email address:
  • Three maps on the A Vision of Britain through Time website illustrate the changes in political boundaries over the period 1830-1945. All have expanding scales and on the second and third this facility is sufficient that individual parishes can be inspected.
  • Somerset Hundreds as drawn in 1832. This map was prepared before The Great Reform Act of that year. Note the polling places and representation of the various parts of the county.
  • Somerset in 1900, an Ordnance Survey map showing rural districts, the boundaries of the larger towns, the smaller civil parishes of the time, and some hamlets and villages in each parish
  • Somerset in 1943, an Ordnance Survey map showing the rural districts after the changes to their structure in the 1930s

Online Transcriptions

Other Resources

Photo Gallery

St. George's Church
St. George's Church
Old House near Church
Old House near Church
Gate House near Church
Gate House near Church
This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at Whatley, Mendip. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WeRelate, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.