OpeningThe Church is open every day from 9:00am until 5:00pm (or dusk if earlier.)
The parish and hamlet of Turkdean stands in rolling Cotswold countryside between Northleach and Bourton-on-the-Water.
Turkdean is now a small community of less than 40 dwellings and about 60 souls, scattered across the hills and valleys, but with an (unsignposted) concentration of houses around the Church of All Saints itself which, together with the nearby K6 telephone box, are the village's only public buildings.
Although small, the community's history is lengthy. The popular Channel 4 archaeology programme 'Time Team' dedicated their Bank Holiday weekend "live" dig in August 1997 (Series 5 Episode 4) to the excavation of the remains of a large Roman villa just outside what now represents the village, dating from the 3rd century AD. Although the existence of the Roman community gives credence to the possibility that there may have been a Saxon church at Turkdean there is little other evidence for that and All Saints Church today represents a late 15th, or possibly early 16th century, rebuilding of a Norman church which originally had been dedicated to St Mary by the knight Robert d'Oilgi, whose ownership is recorded in the Doomsday Book.
The oldest standing fabric of the church is now the West end of the nave which probably dates from the early 12th century, but signs of the original 11th century Norman building and most of the remnants of the original Norman work were built back in to the walls of the church at the time of the rebuilding when a new South aisle was also constructed and the tower was added. Significant refurbishment was also carried out in the 19th century, when the population of the village peaked at over 200, and then again in the 1960s when the population had crashed to under 100. It was during the works carried out in 1967 that the 14th century wall-paintings were regrettably whitewashed: as a result only a very small ephemeral section of this decoration now survives.
The Christian community in this small village continues to worship God in this beautiful building and holds a traditional BCP Matins service with Holy Communion at 10.30am on the fourth Sunday of the month. In addition to the monthly Matins service, Christmas is celebrated with a candlelit service of readings and carols and, in keeping with our surroundings, our October Matins is celebrated as a Harvest Thanksgiving. We also hold a special service "in the round" on Maundy Thursday welcoming representatives from neighbouring parishes. In some years we also hold a "Floral Choral" Evensong in July which is an opportunity for visitors from all over the Northleach Benefice to come together with impressive floral displays that fill the Church.
The Church is open every day from 9:00am until 5:00pm (or dusk if earlier.)
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