The church was replaced in the 12th century by a stone church. By the 1870’s, however, that church was in bad condition and was taken down three years later in 1873 by the patron of the living, Lord Portman. Remnants of the Norman church survive incorporated into the new building.
The record of rectors starts in the 13th century, the font from the 12th century and the cross outside the church from about 1450. The church registers date back to 1559.
Outside the church gate is the 14th century preaching cross, erected for the use of friars, who were forbidden access to the church by the regular clergy. Its shaft was reduced in height in the 1650s by Cromwell’s Act of Parliament against ‘images’. This cross ‘had had a crucifix at the top’, and all crosses were to be cut down to the height of a man.
Charles Kingsley of ‘The Water Babies’ fame was curate for a short time in the 1840s.
CONTACTS IN PIMPERNE
Licensed Lay Minister:
Martin Richley: Gwenerne, Pimperne (01258 450595)
Lay Pastoral Assistants:
Jacqui & Barry Torrance: 7 Liddington Crescent, Blandford (01258 480713)
Anne Allan: 1 Manor Farm Close, Pimperne (01258 456553)