If, like myself you find you have ancestors in Dilton Marsh, then sooner or later you will probably find them in Dilton as well. Before Dilton Marsh was officially made a Parish in it's own right the Church of Saint Mary in Dilton may well have been their nearest Anglican Church.
When I visited Dilton Marsh, we drove down the little road which leads to Old Dilton and my mother and I felt as though we were stepping back in time as we went up the path to the little church, which has been closed for regular worship since 1900. A plaque next to the door tells the visitor,
"This church is maintained by the Churches Conservation Trust with money provided by Parliament and the Chuch of England and by the gifts of the public. Although no longer used for regular worship, it remains a consecrated building.">/em>
The church has no electricity supply and is, as it was in Georgian times. Dilton is a peaceful place, seemingly untouched by time.
On this site I have some memorial inscriptions from the Church of St Mary - recorded by a local newspaper, a map of the area circa 1830, and also a history of Old Dilton and the church - copied from an old booklet - which makes interesting reading.
A past Priest at St. Mary's was none too pleased about the influx of burials from the surrounding areas, he wrote in the church records,
"1776 September 18th Joseph TUCKER son of James Schoolmaster at Westbury and Mary. The child was buried unknown to me and without my leave or knowledge: his grandfather Isaac Tucker I buried in Westbury churchyard and all the family of the Tucker's lie in Westbury churchyard, but because his father Robert Tucker married a Lanfear of Diltons Marsh; they all want to be buried with the Lanfears; this to please the mother. It is the second child he has buried at Dilton and thus Dilton Churchyard now by an increase of burials from the Liberties of the Mother Church is so crowded with corpses, that some bodies are dug up with the hair upon their sculls which is a shock to human nature and now some want the Vicar's house at Dilton, which the Churchwardens made me rebuild anew in the year 1753 pulled down again and the Orchard and Garden all thrown into Dilton Chapelyard; a pretty proposal indeed. So the Vicars must loose their property, enlarge this Chapelyard and ride all manner of weather to Dilton to bury the dead which ought to be buried at Westbury Church, but I am determined they shall never lay the Vicar's orchard to the Chapelyard, neither shall they carry so many of the dead to Dilton without my leave as they have done."