the cobley family history
husbands bosworth, all saints image
All Saint's, Husbands Bosworth, Leicestershire

This church is believed to stand on the site of a Saxon church. The earliest parts of the present church date from the late 12th or early 13th Century. In the early days it came under the patronage of the Abbots of Leicester Abbey. The Parish was then part of the huge Diocese of Lincoln.

The Church itself is built in the early English and decorated styles. Alterations and additions have obliterated most of the early features. The gothic Chancel arch and Tower archare both parts of the original building. Parts of the Tower are also of great antiquity, dating from the 14th Century.

The present choir vestry was added in the 15th century as a chapel. It was restored in 1683 and this date is marked on the outside wall. It was used as the village school from 1707 to 1820, during which time it was blocked off from the rest of the Church. The original doorway can be seen on the outside of the building.

The Clerestory windows were added in the late 15th or early 16th century. they became fashionable at that period so that more light could be thrown onto the rood-screen (a screen surmounted by a cross, built across the Chancel arch). Notice the old rood-staircase doors. There are marks on the Chancel arch where the rood-screen had been attached until it was removed during the Reformation.

The South Porch was added in 1746. The oak outer doors are modern replacements, locally made and installed in 1996. There is a plaque on the inner wall by the doors, commemorating their dedication. The large lock from the original doors can be seen on a ledge at the back of the Church. Outside, the South Porch has two sundials incorporated into the gable.

The North Isle was built in 1812; it is believed to have replaced a 17th century north Chapel.

The clock is medieval and was restored in 1983 by Geoff Armitage, a local resident and church member.

The Church was restored to its present form between 1861 and 1867. The Chancel was reconstructed by the then rector, the Reverend George W. Phipps, in memory of his sister who was blind, deaf and dumb.


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photo: garth cobley
The Great Storm

In 1755, the church of Husbands Bosworth was damaged by a storm, attended with such terrible thunder and lightning as had not its equal in the memory of man. On Sunday, July 6, between 7 and 8 in the evening, several stones were struck
out of the within side, the pavement in some places raised an inch above their former level, their bells displaced, their frames and wheels much splintered, the spire in particular was very much shattered, a large chasm opened in it, about 12 yards in length and 1 in breadth, whence many heavy stones were forced to a great distance; globes of fire were seen in the air, flashes of lightning in a terrible manner ran along the streets, and a great smoke and sulphurous smell issued from the aperture of the spire; and what was remarkably providential, several hundred weight of stones fell about, and upon, the grave where the minister (and a large congregation attending) had just buried a corpse; which funeral rites, had they been performing at that alarming juncture, must inevitably occasioned the mournful solemnity of many.

From: John Nichols,
The History and Antiquities
of the County of Leicester
Earliest Cobley event:

George Cobley
married Elizabeth Berry, 29 April 1868