banner

Shapwick

Link to map.

The village of Shapwick sits on the northern slopes of the Polden ridge and just off the A39.

The most visible building of interest is 13th to 15th century St Mary's church at the cross roads.

Another much less visible building is Shapwick Manor, a 14th to 17th century house originally under the domain of Glastonbury Abbey but is now a hotel & house for private hire.

Shapwick School is one specifically for special needs children and has its main site in the center of the village.

Shapwick overlooks the peat moors to the north and is on the edge of where the prehistoric trackways ran between Shapwick and the islands of Burtle, Westhay and Meare. As such it has seen a number of prehistoric archeological finds in fields around the village and most of the land around is designated as sites of special scientific interest or protected with a scheduled historic rating.

In 1998 a large Roman coin hoard was discovered. At over 9000 coins it was one of UK's largest and the hoard is now on display in the Museum of Somerset at Taunton.

The village has been labeled as "A typical english village". Due to its layout, the manor and the archeological significance, the late archeologist Professor Mick Aston of the BBC Time Team had made an extensive investigation of the village and sorrounding land. This has led to the results being published as "The Shapwick Project, Somerset: A Rural Landscape Explored". Few places in the UK have been so historically scrutinized as the village of Shapwick.

At the foot of the Polden hills below the village is Shapwick Moor nature reserve which is run by the Hawk and Owl Trust. Along Station Road towards Westhay is The Avalon Marshes Visitor Centre.

There used to be a railway station at the point where the road crosses the South Drain canal but it has closed and is no longer there. The railway line is now a pedestrian and cycle track which runs through Shapwick Heath nature reserve until it arrives as Ashcott Corner.

A gallery of images related to the village of Shapwick can be viewed here.

 
Village

Village

 
Church

Church

 
Prehistoric Finds

Prehistoric Finds

 
The Shapwick Hoard

The Shapwick Hoard