Saturday, 7 February 2015

St Johns Burford

The Spire on St John's Burford is one that can be see for miles from along the A40 on the top of the of the Windrush Valley. The church dates back to the 12th century being built in 1175 and since then has been added to many times to make it what you see today. I visited it on a cold January day.
Be warned this is one of the longest blogs I have written in a while and I pondered wither to do it in two parts  but I decided to leave it long, so get yourself a coffee or tea and enjoy the tour.

 St Johns as seen from near the Almshouses entrance

And the main entrance

Looking to the south side of the churchyard you can't help notice some of the tombs

over to the west end more headstones
The path leading along the church to the entrance

One of the tombs you can see

along with many more
Now the presents of all these tombs indicates that the person or family buried were wealthy, that gives an indication of what you might expect to see inside

On the wall near the entrance is this plaque to Three Levellers . The church at the time was used as a prison for the Banbury Mutineers three of them were shot and buried in the churchyard. Each year they are remembered on Levellers Day

Going round the churchyard to the east you pass this tomb

On the east end of the churchyard are more family plots

On the north side some older ones along with the odd shrub

To the right is the River Windrush

The only war grave I came across which is to Private A Search

 Surprisingly  I did not take many of the church, probably because it was so cold and I did not want to change to the wide angle lens 
Two steps back from here and I'm with the ducks in the river

 The Main entrance is through this porch here

 Which when you go in and look down the aisle you see this view

 Looking up the this is the mural that you can see

On the north aisle you can see a wonderful covered font which is beautifully carved

At the back is the town war memorial listing the fallen from the first war, there is another for the second war though not so large

 On the side is the Guild Chapel that became the Lady Chapel which was built  around 1200 but was Incorporated into the new porch in 1400

I could not really take what I wanted on my visit as there was meeting going on and I felt I would be being rude mooching around them
 This is the altar in the chapel

These are some of the memorials I managed to take in the guild chapel

I have say it is the most impressive chapel I have come across yet for memorials and there was more to come elsewhere in the church

But across in the North Aisle is this Memorial to Edmund Harman who was Barber & Personal Servant to King Henry VIII

The inscription on the side of his memorial

small explanation on who Edmund Harman was

And this is what is written on the side of the memorial in English that you can understand

The North aisle where the memorial is, what I did not realise at the time through the far arch was another which you will see is amazing
 Just behind the TV you could see in the last photo is this small chapel of St Peters

Which you can see here on the left
 Next place I went was the Chancel

I thought it was wonderful

even the chancel window was stunning with all the scenes you could see on it.

But how about this for a backdrop on the altar, a quite stunning nativity scene

This memorial to Sit Thomas Tanfield and his wife Elizabeth was through the arch I mentioned and was quite stunning being the most amazing tomb effigy's I've seen yet
The fellow kneeling is their grandson Lucius Cary 2nd Viscount of Falkland

This is about as full a view I could get using the lens I had
This was their only child Elizabeth  married to Henry Cary 1st Viscount of Falkland her son is on the other end of the tomb

This is the tomb canopy which is very elaborate

Couple of views of the effigies themselves 
 Elizabeth and Sir Thomas

Near the tomb is this clock mechanism and bell
The clock was made in 1685 by Hercules Hastings for the sum of £10.

There are a few more chapels to see but this one was worth looking at with the memorials and the  boards listing gifts to the poor

Lots of people wanted to be remembered well

on the floor were more memorials or they could even be crypts

This was another chapel I noted 

with this fellow taking pride & place on the wall

who is John Harris who was alderman & mayor of Oxford. He was also a benefactor of the town.

Looking back from the chancel

Looking towards the  stained glass window at the back of the church and the eagle lectern

View up the central tower

The Pulpit which I did not think to get a photo from this time

There are some really nice stained glass windows in the church

With scenes from the Bible

view along one of the aisles and some of the wall painting which have been uncovered
By the time I took this I had had not realised I had wandering round for an hour and had left my wife in the car so I left quickly  to meet up with her. I could have sent a couple of hours in the church alone taking better photos and reading the memorials, maybe I'll get a chance to return. This blog has been quite long this week so my apologies  if you had become bored at the end.
Have a nice Sunday.


  1. There's no way to get bored when looking at such beautiful pictures! I can see how you could spend hours in there- it's so lovely!

  2. just amazing!! would you consider that a Gothic style church? either way it is just too too gorgeous!! i love it! ( :

  3. Wow - what a gorgeous place with so many wonderful nooks to explore!

  4. Very beautifull, very interesing church...:)

  5. A beautiful church. I enjoyed reading and going off on a tangent to read about the three levellers and their movement having never heard of the before.


  6. Hi! I have nominated you for the Leibster and Verstaile Award... click the link to check it out: :)

    1. Thank you but I don't feel I can accept this award on this blog.

  7. Beautiful! The statues and the stained glass windows are gorgeous.

  8. Have you considered taking this work to grave yards that aren't christian? I would find that very interesting.

  9. As always, your work is stunning, Bill! So much history and beautiful pictures here, such a fine tour of places I might otherwise never get to see :) Thank you!