All Saints
Parish Church
  Woodford Wiltshire

All Saints the Parish Church of Woodford in Wiltshire was completely reconstructed from the foundations upwards about 1845. It must be assumed therefore, that this was the time period when the warm air stove was installed. The stove which is installed in a floor pit in the centre aisle of the church, is covered by several cast iron open pattern floor gratings to allow the convected heat from the stove to rise into the church.  As the overall width of the stove is greater than the opening provided by the gratings it is apparent that once the stove was erected in its position in the floor pit it could never be removed.

Front view of top of the warm air stove.

 The firing end of the stove which still has its
   old stoking tools left in position.
Rear view of the warm air stove
showing the flue outlet pipe.
The flue from the stove runs horizontally under the centre aisle but the
position of the vertical chimney and its outlet could not be found.

The warm air stove is marked with the maufacturers name Falkirk Iron Co Ltd and is in remarkably good condition considering its age. The Falkirk Iron Works was established about 1815. 

Research carried out by the Heritage Group considers the stove to be of the Gill design which was in production from the 1830's onwards. One of the Gill stove's attributes is that it has 10 sq feet of external heating surface for every  1 sq foot of internal heating surface.  
This is the first example of a Gill stove to be discovered by the Heritage Group.

How this type of stove manufactured by a Scottish firm came to be erected in a
Parish Church  in a small Wiltshire village remains a question waiting to be resolved.

MAY  2003