Godney History

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Extract from The Project Gutenberg EBook of Somerset , by G.W. Wade and J.H. Wade

Godney (1½ m. N.E. of Meare, 2 m. N. of Glastonbury) is famous for the remains of a lake village which have been discovered here. The village consisted of a number of dwellings, each built on a substructure of timber and brushwood, resting upon the marsh which once occupied the site, and held in position by small piles. Upon this base was laid a floor of clay, in the centre of which was a circular stone hearth (about 4 ft. in diameter); whilst the walls of the huts were made of timber, wattles, and daub. As the floors and hearths gradually sank in the yielding marsh, they had to be renewed from time to time; so that several successive layers of them have been found, resting upon one another. Round the collective huts which formed the village ran a palisade of piles, the enclosure being irregular in shape. The articles found in the village (many of which are in the Glastonbury Museum ) show that the inhabitants practised agriculture, spinning, and weaving, and were acquainted with iron weapons. They are supposed to have been Celts by race; and the period to which they are assigned falls between 300 B.C. and 100 A.D.


The Church of the Holy Trinity, no longer in use, dates from 1839 by G. D. Manners and was built on a medieval site. It was restored in 1903 with an added chancel, by E Buckle. It is a grade II listed building.

During the Second World War, Godney was incorporated into GHQ Line. Several pillboxes were constructed in the area. Natural obstacles to tanks were supplemented with an anti-tank ditch and bridges in the area were prepared for demolition at short notice.