The remains of this motte and bailey castle are located north of the village of Stowe-by-Chartley. The original wooden castle was constructed circa 1100, then rebuilt in stone around 1220. Chartley Castle ceased to be used as a residence after the construction of the nearby Chartley Hall in 1475; the castle fell into disrepair, and was recorded as a ruin by antiquarians as early as 1540. Chartley Castle is a Grade II listed building, featuring a rare cylindrical keep. Though the castle and grounds are not generally accessible to the public, walking tours of the area are held regularly- the Parish newsletter will give details of any scheduled tours.
Chartley Moss National Nature Reserve is the largest example of a floating peat bog, or schwingmoor, in Britain. The sphagnum lawn supports important botanical communities adapted to grow in this hostile environment which in turn support a rich invertebrate fauna. For more information visit the Natural England website.
The village hall is located within the centre of Stowe-By-Chartley and is pivotal to community life in the parish. The Hall is regularly used for a range of community related functions and events and is an excellent facility to hire for all types of social, family or business requirements. For more details and to book, visit the Village Hall web site.Chartley Hall Chartley Hall is the third hall to be built on the site, the previous two having burnt down. The original building was a moated (the moat still exists) and battlemented timber mansion built to replace Chartley castle as a residence. Elizabeth 1st was entertained here in 1575 and Mary, Queen of Scots, was imprisoned here in 1586. A catalogue of historical records is available in the Gateway to the Past. The Chartley Cattle herd was established in 1248 for more details click here. and here.
Sadly Chartley Manor itself no longer exists but Chartley Manor Farm is a fine Grade II half timbered Elizabethan manor house set in its own parkland almost opposite Chartley Castle.
For local history by the BBC click here.HistoricrecordsofStowebyChartleyParishCouncilhavebeendepositedatStaffordshireRecordOffice,wheretheyareavailableforpublic inspection, subject to exemptions under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. These include the parish council minutes, 1894-1990. AcatalogueoftheserecordsisavailablebyclickingonGatewaytothePast-theonlinecatalogueoftheStaffordshireandStokeonTrent.The Archive Service's website provides further information about your local community.
When British Telecom decided to decommission the telephone box in Stowe village it was bought by the Parish Council for the nominal sum of £1. Ideas for its future use were widely canvassed and it was decided to set up a Book Exchange. Thanks to the efforts of Mike Beardmore, who repainted the box in best Post Office Red, and John Blount, who fitted the shelves, this exchange has been in operation for the last 9 years. Everyone is welcome to visit the box and use it on a "bring one, take one" basis. We say this because the books do seem to have gained the habit of breeding in the box thus requiring the occasional clearout to a local charity. Also in the box there are Walk Leaflets covering the many footpaths in Stowe Parish.
Formerly the playing field of the now closed Earl Ferrers Primary School the playing field was donated to the parish by Staffordshire County Council. The field itself and the play equipment are maintained on behalf of residents by the Parish Council. The field is also now the venue for the extremely successful Stowe Village Fete generally held on the second Sunday in July.
St. John the Baptist Church
From earliest times the Church of St. John the Baptist has been referred to as the church at Stowe (or Stowa), an Anglo-Saxon place name. It was probably built about 1150 AD and was founded by either Ranulph Gervons or Ranulph Blunderville, both of whom bore the titles of Earl of Chester and Lord of Chartley. In the tower the belfry is approached by ladders and contains six bells. The treble was cast in 1914 and the inscription reads “To the glory of god and in memory of Frederick George Bromhall. Given by his sister Margaret Daniel”. The casting of two of the bells is unknown but the lettering indicates late mediaeval. The other three bells were cast in 1632, 1608 and the 16th Century. Of more recent origin is a memorial tablet to General Sir Walter Congreve who was awarded the Victoria Cross. A similar tablet commemorates the General’s eldest son, William la Touche Congreve, who was also awarded the Victoria Cross. A brief guide to St. John the Baptist Church by H.S.K. Sainsbury consisting of 11 pages of church history is available inside the church. Proceeds from the sale of the book go towards Church maintenance. For more information visit the mid Trent Churches web site. For more information on the Chuch Bells, click here or to hear them ring click here.