|St Dunstan's Churchyard, Cranford||Hillingdon|
There has been a church here since Saxon times and St Dunstan's remains a small remote church, despite its alarming proximity to the M4. From 1618 the Manor of Cranford was owned by the Berkeley family and Cranford House was adjacent to the church. There are fine memorials inside the church, including those of the Berkeley family. The churchyard has a good collection of specimen trees including large Wellingtonia, cedar, yew and limes.
The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/03/2012
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The information below is taken from the relevant Local Authority's planning legislation, which was correct at the time of research but may have been amended in the interim. Please check with the Local Authority for latest planning information.
St Dunstan has a C15th tower and chancel, the nave rebuilt after damage by fire in 1710 by Elizabeth, Dowager Countess of Berkeley who lived at the adjacent Cranford House, its grounds now largely Cranford Park (q.v.). The church abuts the stable block of Cranford House and had an important position in relation to the great house. The Manor of Cranforde had a priest at the time of Domesday when it was owned by William FitzAnsculf; the manor was divided in the C13th into Cranford St John, given to the Knights Templar and later transferring to the Knights of St John of Jerusalem, and Cranford Le Mote, which went to the Abbey of Thame. It later became one manor again when both were in the ownership of Sir Roger Aston, Keeper of the King's Wardrobe under James I. After his death the Manor was acquired in 1618 by Elizabeth, Lady Berkeley and the church remains a living of the Berkeley family today. Inside the church are numerous fine monuments including that of 1611-13 for Sir Roger Aston and his wife by the King's Master Mason and the tomb of the Countess of Berkeley (d.1635) by Nicholas Stone, said to have been made in Rome. There are other memorials for members of the Berkeley family in the church, and also on the exterior wall of the church. The church was restored in 1895 by J L Pearson, and the interior again in 1935, with fine work undertaken by Martin Travers (1886-1948).
The churchyard has brick walls and is entered from the south by a lych-gate. There is a good collection of specimen trees in the churchyard including large Wellingtonia, cedar, yew and lime. Among the more recent gravestones in the churchyard is that of comedian Tony Hancock (1924-68) and his mother Lucie Lilian Sennett (1890-1969). The rectory, now a private house, is no longer within Cranford Park, from which it was cut off when the M4 was constructed in 1964, although many C18th houses had already been demolished when the Bath Road area was developed from the 1930s.
Bridget Cherry and Nikolaus Pevsner, 'The Buildings of England London 3: North West' (Penguin, 1999 ed); Ben Weinreb & Christopher Hibbert, 'The London Encyclopaedia' (Macmillan, revised ed. 1993); Sir Clifford Radcliffe 'Middlesex', Evan Brothers Ltd, (c.1950)