Saturday, 13 January 2018

St Mary Magdalen Stoke Talmage

After visiting Cluxham & Easington churches last year I realised there were a few more churches in the vicinity and Stoke Talmage was the next village along so over the Christmas period I visited three. St Mary Magdalen was the first and like Easington the village only consisted of a few houses. Quoting straight from Wikipedia on the history
"Stoke Talmage seems to have had a parish church since the 11th century, although the first clear historical reference to it dates from 1219. The Church of England parish church of Saint Mary Magdalene was restored in 1758. In 1860 it was restored again and extended to plans by George Gilbert Scott.
St. Mary Magdalene Rectory was built in 1752. It was extended in 1820 by the builder and architect Daniel Harris."

Above a shot from the gate and a look along the path which you can see is just a well trodden path across the grass bringing you past the East end of the church left

Heading around the South side of the church gives a better view and shows a little of age of the church.
Unusual feature to me is the short belltower

The North side always seems to be the side that is forgotten about but is still tidy none the less

around to the east end and you can see there is a North aisle to the church

Above the bell tower and a blocked off entrance with window at the top
Left a view across the churchyard from the far side

Zoomed in a little

Looking west over the churchyard which is quite large considering the size of the comunity

The churchyard is still in use and people are remembered as you can see from the flowers

The far side of the churchyard to a row of cottages

This side leads to a lane down the steps in the distance

A row of cast iron grave markers all in very good condition and I suspect the last resting place of one family. Behind there are a few more cast markers.
Left a family vault

some forgotten tombs under the trees

and old headstones covered in moss with a forgotten familyvault
Left a chest tomb with ivy creeping on it
The tome and vault can be see on the South side of the church

Above around the North side a moss covered grave with a bird bath on now forgotten about.
Right a view of the churchyard from near the steps from the lane South of the church
A last view of St Mary Magdalen. The church was locked when I visited and if I get a chance I will return but for now if you look in the link it will take you to the Photos from Oxfordshire Churches John Ward took of the church.

Have a wonderful weekend

Saturday, 6 January 2018

2017 Roundup

Happy New year everyone
Time for my yearly round up of the places I visited during last year and my favourite churches. This year I have done some changes to the blog page in that I have added pages at the top showing the counties that the churches are in. This was a suggestion of John Ward of Oxfordshire Churches who's link is over in the side bar on the right. The idea being it made life easer for people to navigate and find the churches or cemeteries.  I also moved the map onto one of the pages as well so you can
see where in the country the churches are.

The first church visited was St Laurence Reading
One which I used to pass on my way to school every day when I was young. The church was damaged in an air raid during WWII and 43 people were killed in the attack You can still see traces today. I have not managed to go inside yet as the church seems to be always locked but one of these days I will
After my usual round-up blog I visited All Saints West Ilsley  a church on the edge on the Berkshire Downs which dates back to around the 1600's and where the Morland Family (who started a local brewery) are buried in the churchyard

I visited All Saints Farnborough which I found was worth visiting from the sexton at West Ilsley
The church dates back to the 12th century and has some interesting features in it along with a wonderful memorial window situated in the West End to John Benjamin who lived next door  and which must look wonderful in the setting sun.

It was nearer home with my next church St Helen's Benson 
One I had visited before but this time the church was open and it was nice to see what the church was like
February saw me showing some from my archive , the first was St James the Less in Pangbourne one which I do intend to return to again for some better photos
This was followed by St Mary the Virgin Whitchurch another I would like to return to for some up to date photos.
St Laurence Tidmarsh followed again one I really need to return to as on the day I took the photos a service was in progress.

The month ended with All Saints Marcham. These were taken quickly while I was on a hike with a few friends looking for WWII pillboxes
St Nicholas Fyfield  was visited the same day as Marcham but I did not get any photos inside as the church was too dark on that occasion but I will return there as there are a few churches in that area I want to visit.
March saw me visiting churches from the Langtree Team Minsitry and St John the Evangelist in Stoke Row was the first was the first

followed by St Peter & St Paul Checkendon parts in & two
I did like this church , particularly the inside

St Katherine Chislehampton  ended the month. This church now belongs to the church conservation trust and is one of two I need to visit in the area again

April came around and I visited St Leonard Woodcote a very nice church in the Gothic Revivalist stile.
Around that time also I updated the blog with tabbed pages at the top as an index showing the counties I had visited and the churches there a sugestion made by John Ward of Oxfordshire Churhes
The next church was New All Saints Newnham Courtenay 
I had visited before but untill this visit I had not realised the church had been closed and was now used as  storage facility

 April ended with a visit to St Mary East Ilsley 
a very nice old church which unfortunatly is suffering from lack of people attending it and in danger  closeing unless something can be done.
May started with  Tretower Churches 
which were photos I took many years ago  though I do intend to return to the church when I get a chance
May saw  Fairmile Cemetery Henley as the next  place, one I visited many years ago and one which I should return to for an update

After the best part of a month break I went to St Bartholomew Brightwell Baldwin
which was done in two parts the church was well worth visiting

The Holy Rood Cuxham
was just along the road and next on my list in July, one which still held some of it's Saxon heritage

I returned to Wales for the Trail of St Michaels Churches and St Michael in the Willows Llanfihangel
A fine old church set out of the way in its own grove of trees 

I visited St Cannen next one I thought at first belonged to another Village and one with some history to it as well

The last of my churches from Wales that month was St David Maesmynis
I was lucky to get in as the people who were cleaning it were about to go but waited till I finished taking my photo. I also got a surprise because the churchwarden knew who I was.

The following week I did a piece on Headstones because I had come across so many with different designs on them.

I was back in Wales for the next church and another from the Builth Wells group of churches with
 St David Llanddewier cwm another nice old church dating back to the 12th century

I dug into my archives for the Holy Trinity Bolton and I have to admit I never got to go in there because it was closed and derelict  but I'm glad to say it still has a use being converted into flats

I was off to St Peter Easington
a very pleasant little church set back out of the way  near Cuxham and one which still has medieval traces about it

The next church I came across while on my way to visit another St Pauls Highmoor though was closed and for sale so I stopped off on the way back to record what I could be fore it was sold

 My next church in September was St Mary Magdalene Crowmarsh
Now I had been there before but by chance I spotted the church was open when I went to a nearby builders merchants so I came back with my camera for some photos of the inside

St Nicholas Rotherfield Greys was the Church I was the church I was on my way to visit when I past Highmoor. and one I want to return to to see the  magnificent tomb effigy in the church

I showed some churches I had seen in Dundee in my next blog though as much has I would love to visit them there is little chance at the moment

 St Giles Newington was the next church I visited, one I pass on occasion and one I would dearly like to see inside

September ended with a visit to St James Little Milton a Gothic Revival stile church that I stopped to look at one day

In October I finally managed to visit St Nicholas Newbury, one Church I chav wanted to visit in a long time. I did this in two parts because there was so much Stained Glass to see in the church

The Holy Trinity Theale is not far from Newbury and was the next church I featured, pity I did not see inside at the time but it was locked.
St Peter Drayton is a church that I had on my list and I finally managed to get along to see it.
This was another church I had to do in two parts because of what you could see in the church.

I featured the Dundee Submarine Memorial for Remembered day, I felt they remember forgotten hero's who played a big part in World War II

It was back to Wales again with the Parish Church of St John Devine unfortunately it was locked at the time of my visit but I may well get a chance to visit again

St David Llanynis followed  this was a wonderful little church that is well of the beaten track beside the River Irfon not far from Builth Wells. It's pity it is only used occasionally.

I realised I had not featured the Strict Baptist Chapel in South Moreton even though I had taken photos of the pace a few years previous.

I finaly got around to visiting St Leonard Wallingford for the next blog to finish off the year.

What will 2018 bring, well if you look at the map you will see I have added lots of pins ( I'll be adding more), these are the churches I hope to visit through out the year I doubt I'll get to them all but I will try along with some churches I wish to revisit.
Thank you for visiting and I hope you have enjoyed my blogs through the year

Saturday, 9 December 2017

St Leonard Wallingford

This is the third of the churches in Wallingford that I wanted to visit. It is also the oldest one in the town. Even though the church is the oldest in the town there is little history on Wikipedia about it being just a mention. The history I found came from Britain Express a site I find very useful for facts I need.
 "St Leonards is the oldest church in Wallingford and stands on the Thames Path, just a few steps from the River Thames. There has been a church here since at least the late Saxon period, though it is possible that the first church on the riverside site dates back as early as the 6th century. Before the Norman Conquest it appears to have been known as Holy Trinity the Lesser.
You can easily make out the distinctive late Saxon stonework, with stones laid in a herringbone pattern. The Saxon stonework is most easily seen in the north wall and over the round-headed windows. The oldest part of the current structure is the tower, much of which is 11th century.

In the 13th century St Leonard was united with St Lucien's church (now demolished) and it formed one of 14 medieval churches in Wallingford. Henry I granted the church to the monastery of St Frideswide at Oxford, and after the Dissolution of the Monasteries it reverted to the crown.
The church was heavily damaged in the 1646 siege of Wallingford, when Parliamentary troops used the church as a barracks. It took repairs in 1656, 1695, and 1700 before the church could finally be reopened for worship. From 1849 the church was rebuilt in Gothic Revival style, under the direction of Henry Hakewill. Thankfully, Hakewill's restoration preserved sections of the original Saxon building. Hakewill's efforts were not universally appreciated; architectural historian Nikolaus Pevsner bitingly declared that Hakewill had not restored St Leonard's, he had 'mistreated' it.
One highlight of the church interior are a series of 4 murals of angels painted in 1889 by artist George Leslie, who lived in St Leonard's Lane. Other highlights include a series of finely crafted 18th century monuments in the nave."
Up to now every time I visited I found the church locked but finding out where to get the key this time I returned to get my photos.

As you approach St Leonard's Lane you get a nice view of the church

The Bell tower

Above the South side of the church and Left part of the churchyard

More of the churchyard

This part seems to be fro cremations

Around the West end are a few more headstones

above one of the headstones and a couple of graves with head and foot stones with a slab between them

Around the North side of the church. The churchyard is no longer in use but is well maintained.

Above the entrance to the church with internal porch. If you look above you can see the original Saxon herringbone brickwork

Above the information board on the church

Inside the view of the nave showing the Saxon Arches to the chancel and apse

The South aisle

Above the chancel arch with the Saxon carving in it.
Left the altar

Six candles and crucifix

Above a reminder that Remembrance day has just gone

Left looking to the back of the church

This photos were taken with my DSLR on the tripod.
Above the nave and Right the North aisle


Couple more views of the chancel arch and apse

Above the apse with the altar

Panoramic view of the apse


The chance towards the Organ at the back

Unusual in that there is no Pulpit but a lectern.
Left a view to the South aisle

There are quite a few memorials in the church

If the church is locked then you are given a key to the south door which I did not realise was not that old

The church does have some nice stained glass

Which will show up in the sunlight

Above the central window in the apse with the ones to the left and right  here either side

Small memorial under the south window.
Right the murals by artist George Leslie

The all show angles

and are very revivalist in their looks

Found it quite hard to get a good shot of them.
The poppies near one of the murals

another view of the small window and memorial. Right a Madonna and Child 

Towards the South aisle again

The Lectern where the pulpit would normally go

Above one of the choir stalls
Right the altar in the South aisle

Above a tubed font with rather nice cover
The Chance arch showing the carving on it
Basket weave carving
a face carved in the corner of the arch support

 I will leave you with this floral display I took on my way out
Have a Great Weekend