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West Knighton, Dorset

Historical Description

Knighton, West, a parish in Dorsetshire, 4 miles SE of Dorchester station on the L. & S.W.R. It includes the hamlets of Fryer Mayne, Little Mayne, and Lewell. Post town, Dorchester. Acreage, 2216; population of the civil parish, 321; of the ecclesiastical, 805. The living is a rectory, united with the rectory of Broad Mayne, in the diocese of Salisbury; gross value,, £430 with residence. The church is small and ancient. It was restored in 1894 by the munificence of Dr F. Bisset Hawkins.

Transcribed from The Comprehensive Gazetteer of England & Wales, 1894-5


The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.

Ancient CountyDorsetshire 
DioceseBristol1542 - 1836
DioceseSalisbury1836 -
Ecclesiastical parishWest Knighton St. Peter 
HundredCulliford Tree 
Poor Law unionDorchester1836 -
Registration districtDorchester 
Registration sub-districtPuddletown 

Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.

Church Records

The parish register dates from the year 1693. The original register books are now deposited with the Dorset Archives Service, but have been digitised by and made available on their site (subscription required).


Church of England

St. Peter (parish church)

The parish church of St. Peter is a small but ancient edifice of stone, in the Gothic style, and consists of nave, south transept, north porch and a small western tower, containing one bell, bearing the motto "Praise the Lord, 1603": there are 180 sittings.

Civil Registration

For general information about Civil Registration (births, marriages and deaths) see the Civil Registration page.

West Knighton was in Dorchester Registration District from 1837 to 1949 and Weymouth Registration District from 1949 to 1974

Directories & Gazetteers

We have transcribed the entry for West Knighton from the following:

Land and Property

The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Dorset is available to browse.


Online maps of West Knighton are available from a number of sites:

Newspapers and Periodicals

The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the Dorset County Chronicle and the Sherborne Mercury online.

Villages, Hamlets, &c

Fryer Mayne
Little Mayne

Visitations Heraldic

The Visitation of Dorset, 1623 is available on the Heraldry page.

DistrictWest Dorset
RegionSouth West
Postal districtDT2
Post TownDorchester