St Thomas a Becket's Church
County Council (Unitary)
Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council
SE398398 (439772, 525429)
The nearest postcode is an aid to location, and does not necessarily reflect the actual address of the monument. Most scheduled monuments are not occupied buildings and have no postal address or postcode of their own. In rural and coastal areas, the nearest geocodable postal address may be several miles away.
The church of St. Thomas a Becket also known as St. Thomas of Canterbury, is now in ruins. With the exception of the east end the walls stand their full height, but the roofs have entirely disappeared, and since the erection of the new church in the village in 1848 the building has been neglected and exposed to the weather.
Two important charters help date Hugh du Puiset's Grindon Church. Firstly, in a charter of circa 1180 endowing Sherburn hospital, du Puiset wrote 'We have built the church of Grindon of new and recently in honour of the blessed martyr, Thomas'. As the church was dedicated to St. Thomas who was murdered in 1170 and canonized in 1172, the new church must have been erected soon after his canonization.
The second charter, which granted glebe lands to Grindon, was witnessed by Archdeacon Burchard and, as such, further limits the building to a date between 1172 and 1186. From these charters, the conclusions can be drawn that the church was built during du Puiset's time as Bishop of Durham (1153-1195), that he was responsible for its erection (Sherburn charter) and that he also saw that the church was liberally endowed with land.
Antony Cairns, 15 December 2013
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