Lyminster, home ground

This beautiful tiny church is in the small Sussex village of Lyminster. I’m sure people must have lived in this lovely area not far from the sea, but it’s known for a fact that Alfred the Great bequeathed the village of Lullyngminster to his nephew, Osfred. Nearly 170 years later it is mentioned in Domesday, but the site of the church dates back to the time of Osfred. The actual church today is very old, nearly a thousand years old, its walls dating from about the 1040’s and its supposedly the burial-place of St Cuthflæd. It is a Grade I listed building, so it is extremely important in terms of our heritage, as well as being no doubt extremely important to the parishioners.

The peaceful old graveyard contains many memorials to people from long ago, including my great-great-great-great-grandfather, my great-great-grandfather, and my great-grandfather. They were all named William, and the tradition continued to my uncle who was also a William; there it ended as he had daughters not sons, but my own sons’ middle name is William.

Four Williams, photo taken about 1892

My grandfather aged about six, and the three other Williams

I don’t know if other members of the family were also buried there, certainly a great-great uncle was; so may of the gravestones were so encrusted with lichen that I couldn’t read who lay beneath. I wandered around in the sunshine, thinking what a beautiful and peaceful place it was.





  1. Susan Wood

    Hello Lois,
    I have just come across your page as I have been adding some names to my family tree after going over a Will by James Belchamber from Littlehampton 1857, trying to find out who the beneficiaries were. One of the beneficiaries was Mary Matthews. Mary Duke, who I believe was married to William Matthews is my gg grandfathers cousin. My gg grandfather was William Reeves who lived in Littlehampton. William’s mother was Sarah Belchamber and one of her sisters was Anne Belchamber. Anne is the mother of Mary Duke. I’m amazed to have been focussing on these people and to think I would find information and a picture of some a day later. Thanks Lois. If my information is right we are very distantly related through the Belchambers of Northchapel. James Belchamber is a brother of Sarah (Belchamber) Reeves and Anne (Belchamber) Duke. He was married to Charlotte Cobby and Charlotte’s daughter Sarah was married to William Reeves mentioned above. So William Reeves uncle was also his father in law.

    Susan Wood

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lois

      Hello cousin! Yes, it looks as if we are distantly related – what a great name, Belchamber! I’ll have a look at my family tree and have a look at Mary and William Matthews!


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