Welcome to our village website. Here you will find information about the village, its activities, its features and its facilities.

Church Knowle is a small village on the Isle of Purbeck, in the county of Dorset, in the south of England.

Church Knowle is situated about one mile west of Corfe Castle, four miles south of Wareham and about six miles west of Swanage. The village has a population of 303 (2001), 9.7% of dwellings are second homes. It is within the parish of Church Knowle.

Church Knowle, St Peter's Church
St Peter's Church, inside view

The church is named Saint Peter's Church. Buried in the Churchyard at Church Knowle are the two brothers who brought the first steam locomotive (Primus) to Purbeck in 1866 - The Pike Brothers - John William and William Joseph Pike (Purbeck Ball Clay Merchants). They are buried together with their relatives. John is buried with his mother-in-law Charlotte Bridges Mayer, who was the daughter of William Adams of London and wife of the potter Thomas Mayer. John lived at Westport House in Wareham, now the home of Purbeck District Council. William Joseph lived in North Street Wareham. William Joseph's 7 year old son was drowned inStudland Bay and is buried alongside his father. John and William Joseph's clay merchant father - William lived nearby at Bucknowle House and it was here that the Pike Brothers were born. William Pike's friend was Jacob Warburton who founded the New Hall Pottery in Staffordshire and also leased Bucknowle Farm.

Warburton Pike was born at Church Knowle and was another son of William Pike. He was educated at University College London and went on to the Middle Temple where he was certified as a Special Pleader. In 1879 Pike published "Translations from Dante, Petrarch, Michael Angelo and Vittoria Colonna" Pike then went on to be the first person to translate Dante's Inferno into English in 1881.

Watch a video of Church Knowle in the snow

Content provided by the Village Hall Committee


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