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#306923 - 5th Apr 2009 12:00pm Overchurch Graves Stones
Doctor_Frick Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 24th Nov 2007
Posts: 308
Loc: Prenton
The first church in Upton or Overchurch is said to date back to 700 - 900ad making it of Anglo Saxon origin. The church was built opposite where Upton Manor stands now just off Moreton Spur on the Overchurch. Nothing is left of the building and the area is now a small wild wood. Some time after the church was destroyed, another church was built on the same site. We can only speculate on the date but due to artifact finds over the years I believe it to be of Norman origin (1066 - 1216 ad).

The interest in the church does not stop there as the old church was surrounded by a burial ground, which despite the
proximity to the local estates; is in good condition and lays covered by foliage which hides the artifacts. Most people in the area who have lived there for years do not even know it exists. The burial ground is a mass of trees, brambles, root grass and undergrowth. The old tombstones are scattered around the small site amongst the ever increasing wilds. The only stone that is now legible dates back to 1745.

The only grave which had any writing on which could be made out lay on its own in the undergrowth. After cleaning it up as much as possible i could make out the following inscription:

"Here lyeth the body of Peter Lowe, who departed this life the 2nd of May aged 30 1745. Here ... (stone damaged and illegible).

In Norman Ellison's book 'The Wirral Peninsula', he describes another tombstone which cannot now be identified but read:

"George Lowe, Died on the homeward bound passage from Jamacia, August 4th 1806, ages 19 years".

Its deffo worth a visit if your in the area but i would only go on a nice day as it gets pretty muddy up there.

Full Story here







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#306935 - 5th Apr 2009 12:55pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: Doctor_Frick]
Archaeo Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 8th Feb 2009
Posts: 349
Loc: Wirral
It's also a Scheduled Ancient Monument, so tread carefully!

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#306942 - 5th Apr 2009 1:25pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: Archaeo]
StuyMac Offline

Wiki Master

Registered: 24th Nov 2003
Posts: 12002
Loc: Wirralshire
I remember this being raised when they built the bypass.

Questions where asked wether the new road was going to disturb this area.

I have seen the stones, though it must have been 20ish years ago now...
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#306945 - 5th Apr 2009 1:32pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: StuyMac]
MissGuided Offline

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Wiki Guardian

Registered: 18th Jul 2008
Posts: 9995
Loc: Back of the wardrobe
wow - this is amazing - like stanlow abbey - just sitting there decaying.
i would love to see these. but as you say - i'll wait until its dry and tread carefully smile
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#306971 - 5th Apr 2009 3:00pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: MissGuided]
Doctor_Frick Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 24th Nov 2007
Posts: 308
Loc: Prenton
They are worth a visit, and very interesting but can be a bit of a pain to find
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#306989 - 5th Apr 2009 4:45pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: Doctor_Frick]
_Ste_ Offline


Wiki Master

Registered: 7th Aug 2005
Posts: 15986
Loc: New Brighton
this is amazing, i`ve been on your wirral site for about an hour and half now, great site happy
Thanks for sharing dr frick smile
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#306998 - 5th Apr 2009 5:00pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: Doctor_Frick]
uptoncx Offline
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Registered: 24th May 2008
Posts: 683
Loc: Wirral

The location you indicated is a bit out, the graveyard is actually almost directly behind the site of Kenilworth Gardens (the flats that were demolished some years ago) at the top of Gainsborough Road, there is a footpath at the side of the garages, the site of the church and the graveyard are ahead and to the left (it is surrounded by a low bank).

As mentioned, the whole site is a Scheduled Ancient Monument, the only part that has as yet been excavated is the site of the church itself, and this was only to expose the foundations of the Norman church. It is though that there may also have been a village surrounding the church.

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#307008 - 5th Apr 2009 5:13pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: uptoncx]
Doctor_Frick Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 24th Nov 2007
Posts: 308
Loc: Prenton
Originally Posted By: uptoncx

The location you indicated is a bit out, the graveyard is actually almost directly behind the site of Kenilworth Gardens (the flats that were demolished some years ago) at the top of Gainsborough Road, there is a footpath at the side of the garages, the site of the church and the graveyard are ahead and to the left (it is surrounded by a low bank).

As mentioned, the whole site is a Scheduled Ancient Monument, the only part that has as yet been excavated is the site of the church itself, and this was only to expose the foundations of the Norman church. It is though that there may also have been a village surrounding the church.


Yep that way is far easier, i came in just off the motorway and spent a good amount of time scouting around and slipping through mud until i found them

It would be nice to see the whole area excavated to see whats around, im sure there would be lots of Saxon / Norman finds around there.
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#307082 - 5th Apr 2009 10:38pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: Doctor_Frick]
RUDEBOX Offline

Wiki Master

Registered: 29th Aug 2008
Posts: 19082
Loc: Bob Land
What a fascinating story- i had no idea!! Thanks for sharing! Also ta for the map as this makes it so much easier to find- i hope!
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#307083 - 5th Apr 2009 10:40pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: Archaeo]
RUDEBOX Offline

Wiki Master

Registered: 29th Aug 2008
Posts: 19082
Loc: Bob Land
Originally Posted By: deano606
It's also a Scheduled Ancient Monument, so tread carefully!
what does this mean?
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#307085 - 5th Apr 2009 10:53pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: RUDEBOX]
_Ste_ Offline


Wiki Master

Registered: 7th Aug 2005
Posts: 15986
Loc: New Brighton
Originally Posted By: RUDEBOX
Originally Posted By: deano606
It's also a Scheduled Ancient Monument, so tread carefully!
what does this mean?


It could be a trap waiting to go off like you see in indiana jones?

think
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#307088 - 5th Apr 2009 11:02pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: RUDEBOX]
uptoncx Offline
Veteran

Registered: 24th May 2008
Posts: 683
Loc: Wirral

A Scheduled Ancient Monument is a 'nationally important' archaeological site or historic building, given protection against unauthorised change. It is a criminal offence to damage, remove or deface any part of it.

This particular 'Ancient Monument' is, however, totaly neglected, and has been for as long as I can remember. English Heritage are supposed to maintain it and a Field Monument Warden should monitor the site to check its condition and to report on damage etc.

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#307089 - 5th Apr 2009 11:05pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: _Ste_]
marilyn Offline

Old Hand

Registered: 8th Feb 2009
Posts: 321
Loc: liverpool city centre
thanks dr frick very interesting it would be great to have it excavated will try to find it when im over whats the feel of this place like does it have an atmosphere

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#307090 - 5th Apr 2009 11:07pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: marilyn]
_Ste_ Offline


Wiki Master

Registered: 7th Aug 2005
Posts: 15986
Loc: New Brighton
thanks upton
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#307092 - 5th Apr 2009 11:12pm Re: Overchurch Graves Stones [Re: marilyn]
Doctor_Frick Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 24th Nov 2007
Posts: 308
Loc: Prenton
Originally Posted By: marilyn
thanks dr frick very interesting it would be great to have it excavated will try to find it when im over whats the feel of this place like does it have an atmosphere


To be honest i thought it woud be a bit scary. I went up there alone one afternoon but when i found the place it had nice feel to it, peaceful and not eiry at all. As i said unless you go in the correct way it could be difficult to find. Its a real shame that its been neglected and most of the tombstones seem to have been broken and vandalised. Worth taking a visit before theer illegible or destroyed.

Just watch out for the giant boulder and tribesman throwing spears !!
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