The Chapel was built at the beginning of the 18th century, several decades after the Act of Toleration, which gave freedom of worship to Nonconformists. In 1756 it was rebuilt as it stands today, with further major renovations in 1859 when the table pew, under which lies a full-immersion baptismal font, was added. The burial ground has some important headstones including a memorial to John Williams, which predates the 1756 rebuilding of the chapel.
Cote Chapel is Grade II*, one of only 29 Grade II* Baptist chapels in England.
‘The simplicity of these Puritan Chapels, built for people who believe and argued not for people who believed and sang or shouted praise, was deliberate.'
Grid reference: SP351031
By Car: When entering Cote from Aston, turn right at the cross roads. Cote Baptist Chapel is 200 metres from the junction. Park on the verges but please take care not to block access for our neighbours and heavy lorries that pass regularly.
Public transport: Oxford rail station is 20 miles from Cote. Bus Number 18, the Oxford - Bampton service, stops in Cote Road (B449), 50 metres from the chapel several times daily.
People with limited mobility should be able to access the ground floor (gravel path to the chapel) but there are steep winding steps to the gallery. Toilet facilities adjacent for chapels users, one with wheelchair access.
You can download a short A4 guide to Cote Chapel free here.
A fully illustrated guide and history of Cote Baptist Chapel written by Dr. Kate Tiller is available from HCT for £6 inc postage (please make cheques payable to 'HCT') or at the chapel.
In the area
The chapel is set in the hamlet of Cote which is on the edge of the Cotswolds; the pretty Cotswold town of Burford is just 10 miles away.
A number of National Trust properties are within easy reach by car, including the magnificent Great Coxwell Barn (9miles) and also Buscot Park (10 miles). Other historic buildings that are nearby include Kelmscott Manor, William Morris' country house, and St Mary's Church, Fairford, with its complete set of Medieval stained glass.
Blenheim Palace is in Woodstock just under 14 miles from Cote. Oxford is 20 miles away and has a wealth of historic buildings and museums to explore, including The Ashmolean Museum, the Modern Art Oxford and the Christ Church Picture Gallery.
Cote Chapel's burial ground is open to the public during daylight hours; to visit the chapel interior please contact one of our volunteer key holders: 01993 851219. Or check for regular Open Days
The site of Cote Chapel was acquired in 1703–1704 by a group of worshippers who previously met at Longworth on the other side of the Thames.
In the 1750s the chapel was enlarged, or more probably rebuilt, to its present size, the capacity being increased in 1756 by the addition of a gallery. In 1859 the interior furnishings were moved around, the pulpit was removed from the south to the west wall, and ample seating was provided in box pews.
The chapel has stone walls with pitched roofs covered in the local stone slate. The truncated front gable incorporates a screen wall which crosses the central valley and is surmounted by a stone panel. In the burial ground are many 18th-century intricately carved headstones. The monument to the Williamson family is listed grade II.
A local volunteer committee helps HCT care for the buildings, welcome visitors and organise events. They are also local advocates for the chapel.
You can download a short guide to Cote Chapel here.
A fully illustrated guide and history of Cote Baptist Chapel written by Dr. Kate Tiller is available from HCT for £6 post free (cheques payable to 'HCT') or at the chapel.
Cote was transferred to the Historic Chapels Trust in 1994. HCT raised funds for major structural repairs, which included the provision of a new kitchen, two WCs and a committee room in a former outbuilding.
There is always much work to do. Currently we need to carry out repairs to the drystone boundary wall, further repair to the roof and redecoration the chapel's woodwork.
Cote Chapel is still available for occasional worship, as well as for marriages, baptisms, funerals and other events such as Harvest Festivals. It is also used for quiet contemplation by many regular visitors and has hosted concerts and lectures. The committee room and the detached building are also available for meetings.
If you would like to support Cote Chapel, by making a donation or by offering your time as volunteer we would love to hear from you!
Cote makes a wonderfully atmospheric venue for weddings, blessings and other services. Burials in the burial ground are still available, contact us for details. The chapel can be hired for concerts. The committee room in the main chapel is available for meetings and has its own small kitchen.
There is a detached building by the gate, with a meeting area, small kitchen, and two WCs, one disabled accessible. There is also a tea point and meeting room in the chapel itself.
For more information about using the chapel for your event please use the form opposite.