Saturday, 14 June 2014

Old Bix Church


The church is called St James and is situated in a valley called Bix Bottom about a mile or so from Bix Village. The church is an old Norman one and you can still see the Norman Lancet Windows. When seeing it first I wondered why it was so far away from the village but on reading up it was situated in a village called Bix Brand the village at the top of the hill being called Bix Gibwyn. I think Bix Brand must have dwindled as they built a new church with the same name in Bix at the top of the hill in 1874. The church in Bix Bottom was abandoned in 1875 since then it has gradually deteriorated to the state it is now. In 1975 it was used in a horror film called Blood on Satan's Claw, If you look on YouTube you can find the Video



  This is the view you get of the church as you walk through what is the entrance to the place. If you look at the opening scene of the film you can see the church through the trees





The church as you get nearer to it still retaining it's Norman Look.











Got to admit I was very surprised to see a couple of graves here and there is writing on them which I need to try and make out what is said on them.





This is what the inside looks like. I would love to have seen it when it was in use.
This and be seen Various scenes from the film.





Ok one of my daily blog photos you might remember. Snowdrops growing in the nave.

This is looking through the chancel arch to the chancel which you can see is small by comparison with other churches but when it was built first I doubt there were that many people to cram in the church so there would not have been a choir in here.




The small window I presume is the lancet one the lager on the right is the chancel window.











To the left you can see what passes as the chancel arch and on the right is the entrance doorway which s missing the keystone and has a huge crack running upwards






Viewed from the outside the building is covered in ivy which is slowly braking it apart.






 This view is taken from the west end wall which is just a pile of rubble now





This is looking at the church from the far corner of what I presume was the churchyard.










The south side showing the ivy clutching the walls.








The new St James church in Bix which I still have to view the inside of.










From the north east side of the church yard, many of the graves dating back to when it opened in 1874.









All these grave are from the Perrin Family and the smaller headstones had matching initials on them




Another set of graves which belong to a different family called  Froud. Below is a map of where you can find Old St James





If your out for a walk round the area it is worth stopping off to look at but you will find a warning notice nearby telling you to say clear because the structure is unsafe  something which you can see in the photos. How long before more of the building comes down is hard to say but the ivy is not helping and the winters will not help either. Hope you have enjoyed my blog.

6 comments:

  1. Another fantastic post. The small headstones with matching initials you mentioned are actually footstones which are not in their original location. They would have originally been placed at teh foot of the grave, but have since been moved in front of the headstone to aid grass cutting.

    Thank you for linking up with Cemetery Sunday

    Beneath Thy Feet

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  2. Wow -- so many great photos! It's always nice to read your posts -- interesting, and I always learn something new. :)

    Thanks for sharing on Taphophile Tragics!!

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  3. Hi Bill, thanks for your blog. I always wanted to visit the old Bix church but then I saw this photo on this website which shows building work suggest it is inaccessable
    http://risk.english-heritage.org.uk/register.aspx?id=48584&rt=1&pn=164&st=a&ctype=all&crit=
    I don't know if the pic from the above link predate your visit?
    Your photos shows much of the forestry that has grown around it especially inside the church has been cleared out, that must have been done recently.

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    1. Answer is I don't know, I have seen some since mine were taken and there was no scaffold. I'd need to go down and look

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  4. I visited this church yesterday and can confirm that although the scaffolding on the south end has been taken down, much of it still remains, including the fence surrounding the entire church. Someone has managed to break through the fence, but I respected the precautions put in place and didn't have a peek inside, despite how tempting it was! Bit of a shame as I'd travelled from Warwickshire to see the church (Blood on Satan's Claw is one of my favourite films!), but it was still a pleasure to walk around it. I'll definitely keep an eye on the English Heritage website and pay another visit once it's back to its former glory (-ish!).

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  5. Old church restoration work Restoration work completed now:
    http://www.oxfordshirechurches.com/Oxfordshire/A/Bix/St-James-old-Church/

    You wanted a look in the new church:
    http://www.oxfordshirechurches.com/Oxfordshire/A/Bix/St-James-Church-of-England-Bix/

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