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Our Local Heritage

St Andrew's Kinson is one of the ancient church sites of Bournemouth and Poole and, until c1830, served the area from the River Stour to the sea beyond Parkstone.

Up until 1868, it was a Chapel-of-Ease linked with Canford. It then became a Parish in its own right.

In 1952 an additional church, St Philip's, was built to serve the Southern end of the Parish. This was rebuilt in 1986. 

In 1831, there were 775 persons in the Parish of Kinson, by 1891 this number had grown to 3650. Now there are over 20,000 residents living in the area served by St Andrew's and St Philip's who together form the Kinson & West Howe Team. 

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There may have been a church on this site in Saxon times (c950 A.D.) and some think the Tower which is the oldest part of the church is Norman (c1100). What is certain is the Tower and the Chancel Arch are both very old (12/1300 A.D.) and have survived several church rebuilding programmes.

The Chancel was rebuilt in 1875. The present body of the church was rebuilt in 1895, being made much larger than the previous one built in 1827.

The history of St Andrew's is one of a church changing to meet the needs of the times. This continues with several internal changes made to the church in 1982. The Lord's Table was then brought forward on an extended platform and the organ moved to a raised platform against the Tower.

We hope you enjoy this brief history. You might also like to take up the blue brochure and enjoy a Faith Tour around this beautiful house of prayer.

c 950 AD: In Anglo Saxon times, Kinson was already a small settlement. St Andrew's is built on an ancient site, but all traces of this era have vanished with the possible exception of the foundations at the base of the Tower. 

c 1100: The Tower is the oldest part of the church and some think that it could date from 1100. The Tower was constructed of ironstone rubble with ironstone dressing. This brown textured stone was known in Dorset as Heath Stone. The flat headed Lancet Windows to the ground floor are deeply splayed one on each of the North and South walls. 

On the right hand side of the Chancel Arch is a Mass Dial. This would have originally been placed outside the church and a wooden peg inserted in the hole. Carved markings radiating from the hole gave the time of the church services - the deeper cut marking 9 am Mass. This dial is one of the most ancient remains of a church built earlier than the Chancel Arch itself. 

c 1200 to 1300: The octagonal lead lined font probably dates from this time (assuming there was no Saxon or Norman building here beforehand) and is made from Purbeck Marble. The Font rim bears the marks of hinges and straps to secure the cover as was the custom to prevent anyone stealing the Holy Water in local Witchcraft practices.

1500: One of the Glastonbury Chairs, in the Chancel, dates from 1500 and was removed from the Abbey at Glastonbury at the time of the Dissolution of the Monasteries under Henry VIII. It belonged to the monk Johannes. The other chairs were made in the 1930's. 

1667: This is the date of the oldest Grave - situated in the Churchyard by the Tower. 

c1670: The Royal Coat of Arms was hung in the church when Charles II reasserted the monarch's control over religious affairs in England after Cromwell's Commonwealth period. In 1760 restoration work was carried out on the painting by a Mr Taylor for the sum of £5. The Coat of Arms was moved to the North East corner of the church in 1982. 

c 1700's: The Text Board on the South wall probably commemorates a rebuilding of the church at that time.

17-1800's: The Tower is used as a schoolroom. 

1751: A Treble Bell was cast in Shaftesbury costing £13:8:2d plus carriage of 12s 0p 

1797: Five of the original Tower's six bells are sold to a church in Bristol for £143:9s:4d with the proceeds being used to erect a Musicians Gallery above the Tower doors. This Gallery was later removed during the 1827 or 1895 rebuildings. 

1827: The Chapel was enlarged as shown on the Chapel Enlargement Board which can be seen on the North wall of the North side aisles. This design, had a large transept going off to the North of the Nave. The Pulpit , Reading Desk and Lectern were in the middle of the present Chancel. Creed and The Lord's Prayer Boards, both painted on wood, hanging to the right of the Chancel Arch, also date from this time. 

19th Century: A fire grate and internal flue (constructed from normal house bricks) were added across the inside South West corner of the Tower from ground level to give light and heat when the Tower was used as a Schoolroom. The internal flue was removed in 2005 when it was discovered to be unsafe. The bottom angle iron support was by then rusted away and the bricks were not keyed in to the surrounding stone walls! 

1893-5: The present church was enlarged and rebuilt by adding side aisles as a cost of £1500. The church was then reopened by the Archdeacon of Dorset on the 31st of May 1895. 

1904: The Tower Clock was added by Gillet & Johnstone, clockmakers of Croydon. It was installed in memory of Queen Victoria. 

1909: The Western Tower wall was seriously cracked, this being repaired by under pinning and the insertion of wall ties. 

1911: The present organ began life in 1911 and was dedicated in December of that year in remembrance of Augusta Russell who lived in Kinson House (now demolished). It was originally situated in the Vestry off the Chancel. 

1920: The organ was moved to the North East corner of the Nave. 

1982: The organ was refurbished and the keyboard console placed midway along the North wall. The organ pipes were moved to a newly constructed platform where the Minstrels Gallery used to be above the Tower's double doors. 

2016: Extensive work commences in February to restore the church building. Works include a new heating system, electric wiring and lighting system, plastering, wooden flooring and pew cushions.

2022: The Tower Clock was refurbished and hourly chimes begin to ring out between 8am and 8pm every day.

Hello and welcome to our church. If you are a new visitor, we have a page for you to get to know us and learn more about planning a visit.
Click here to see more.

Planning your Visit

A Warm Hello 

The following information is specifically for those planning a visit, so that you know, beforehand, what to expect on a Sunday morning.

Where and When

We meet at the Church Building (details here) for our Sunday Service starting at 9:30am. For your first visit, we recommend arriving 10-15 minutes early to ensure you get a parking space and find somewhere to sit before the service begins. When you arrive, you should be greeted by someone on our Welcome Team.

We serve tea, coffee and biscuits from 11am, after the service ends. It is a great way to meet people, or simply take time to find your bearings. All refreshments are free.

Accessibility: There is wheelchair access, and a sound loop for anyone who needs it. Please let one of the Welcome Team know on your arrival and they will help you to get set up. There are disabled toilets in the main foyer.

Our Gathering

The main gathering begins at 9:30am with a warm welcome from one of our team members. We then share news and notices, usually about what’s going on in the life of the church. After a bible reading, one of our leaders will then give a sermon that is bible based and that we can apply to our everyday life. There will be an opportunity to share in the Lord’s Supper where we use bread and wine to remind us of the final meal that Jesus shared with his disciples the night before he died, the unity we share through faith and the future to which we move with hope. Our gathering concludes with an opportunity to share what our children and youth have been learning and a final worship song.


What about my kids?

We have a great programme lined up for kids of all ages:

  • Little Discoverers - Creche (0 months to Reception). Children under 6 months are welcome but must be accompanied by their parent/grown-up at all times.
  • Explorers (Years 1 to 3)
  • Pathfinders (Years 4 to 6)
  • Illumin8 (Years 7+)

Children stay with their parent or grown-up at the start of our gatherings for the welcome, songs and notices. We really value worshipping God all together as a family. At the end of the notices someone will announce that it’s time for the younger members to go to their various groups. You will need to go with your children to their groups and we will ask that register them as part of our child safety policy.

The kids group activities vary depending on the age but usually there is a friendly welcome, bible stories, testimonies, praying, music, craft, drama, fun games and free play. We will let you know when it is time to pick your children up so they can return in time to share in the Lord’s Supper with all those in attendance.


Getting Connected

LIFE Groups

While Sundays are a great way to meet new people, it is often in smaller gatherings that you can really get to know someone. Being part of one of a LIFE group allows you to make new friends, share together and support each other. Our groups meet throughout the week, some afternoons and some evenings.

Serving and Volunteering

If you want to get involved in the life of the church and help us make Sundays run smoothly, you can sign up to serve on a team. 

Other Ministries

We also run the following ministries:

  • Morning Prayer on weekdays
  • Monthly Prayer Gathering on first Saturday of every month
  • Foodbank
Get in touch with us to plan your visit
If you would like to come and visit the church beforehand you are more than welcome! Get in touch and we can arrange a time that suits you.
Email Address:
Comments / Questions or anything you would like to say?

Next, we will contact you by email to say hello and help arrange anything necessary for your visit.


Shirvill Family Dec2020-12   ElaineGalliott1
Reverend Lee and Rachel Shirvill   Reverend Elaine Galliott
Team Rector (Lee)   Assistant Curate

When we first arrived in Kinson in July 2014, we found a welcome unlike any other awaited us at St Andrew's Kinson.

I know I am biased, but if you are looking for a place of belonging and community, you need look no further.

If you are searching for a family church that is home to a diversity of ages and stages of life, who gather in one congregation, centred around the risen Lord Jesus, to hear God's Word, sing His praises and serve His mission - we would love to welcome you to join our church family.

Please make yourself known to one of our Welcomers, our Curate - Reverend Elaine, or to myself, Reverend Lee. We look forward to getting to know you.

With every blessing
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