St Paul's Church Ruscombe
What: Historic church 1839-41 designed by Thomas Foster
Where: On the Whiteshill Main Road
Then: St Paul's and the Congregational church at Ruscombe were built as part of a campaign to reform the moral standards of these two hamlets. A vicarage was also erected further south at the Plain. In 1844, a new school was built opposite the church by the Stroud Charity School Society
Now: The church still stands, although the school was relocated to further up the village

The church was built in 1839-41 as a chapel of ease to Stroud church, as part of a campaign to reform the moral standards of the hamlets of Whiteshill and Ruscombe. It became a separate parish in 1844 and a vicarage was erected at the Plain, south of Whiteshill, in 1845, by public subscription.

Thomas Foster of Bristol designed the church in a neo-Norman style similar to his church at Brimscombe. The church originally consisted just of the west tower, nave and chancel with apsidal end. Matching transepts and vestry were added in 1881, to the designs of W.H.C. Fisher.

The interior was decorated between 1867 and 1905, by two sisters, Emily Rose and Rose Emily Stanton, daughters of the owner of Field Court, Paganhill. Only part of their work survives. There are some good quality 19th and 20th century internal fittings, including the screen to the south transept, which is Peter van der Waals.

From January 2016, this website is managed by Stroud Local History Society