Saturday 31 October 2020

St James the Great, Denchworth


I had been waiting to visit this church for a while and finally got around to going there and another church in the vicinity a few weeks ago, the only let down from my visits were neither were open.

"Denchworth had a parish church by 1086, but the oldest part of the present Church of England parish church of Saint James is 12th century. This is a small part of the south wall of the nave, which seems to have been rebuilt and extended westwards in the 13th century. The south doorway is a plain late Norman arch.

Later in the 13th century the north chapel and the north-west tower were added. The south transept was added in the 14th century and was originally Decorated Gothic. The chancel, north chapel and possibly the south transept were rebuilt in the 15th century, mostly with Perpendicular Gothic windows.The church was restored from 1852 onwards. It is a Grade II* listed building.

The Perpendicular Gothic font is also 15th-century. The Perpendicular-style pulpit is neo-Gothic and was made in 1889.

The south porch is neo-Gothic and was added during the 19th-century restoration. It replaces a two-storey south porch, in whose upper room Gregory Geering and the then vicar established an antiquarian chained library. Its contents included a 1483 edition of the Golden Legend that is now in the Bodleian Library in Oxford and other rare volumes that were transferred to Denchworth vicarage. The library also held curiosities such as a "mermaid's rib".

The church has monumental brasses to Oliver Hyde (died 1516) and his wife Agnes, to William Hyde (died 1557), his wife Margery and their children, and to another William Hyde (died 1567) and his wife Alice. One of the inscriptions for William and Margery Hyde has a commemorative plaque for the foundation of Bisham Priory in 1333 on the back. In the south transept is a memorial tablet to Gregory Geering (died 1690) and four more to members of the Geering family who died in the 18th century.

The tower has a  of four bells, but they are currently unringable.[10] Ellis I Knight of Reading, Berkshire cast the treble bell in 1624. Henry III Bagley, who had bellfoundries at Chacombe in Northamptonshire and Witney in Oxfordshire, cast the second bell in 1733. The remaining bells are from the Whitechapel Bellfoundry: the third bell cast by Robert Stainbank in 1868 and the tenor bell by Mears and Stainbank in 1869. St James' has also a Sanctus bell cast by an unknown founder in about 1699.

St James' parish is now a member of the Vale Benefice, along with the parishes of East Challow, Grove and West Hanney."

The first view you get of the church which in this case was the pub carpark which was the only place I could see to park
Nearby is this pillar which is an is an old preaching cross from the 14th or 15th century

 On the wall of the pub you can see this Roll of honor

Open the doors an inside is a hand written Roll

Getting a reasonable view of the church is not easy until you get around to the South side of the church

The East end looking West

This impressive memorial is in the churchyard on the South side

The North East end of the church

Back to the West end looking at the bell tower

The porch on the South side is tucked up beside a chapel

The South wall of the chapel looking towards the West end

The Chancel at the East end where you can see a priest door

Another shot looking at the East end of the church

Above an eroded Gargoyle watches out from a buttress

This is the view you get after walking in the churchyard

Looking East down the churchyard from near the South chapel

Looking Est along the North side

You can see some old headstones in the churchyard

Near the far East end of the churchyard you will find the Commonwealth War grave of Lance Corporal F Haines

Looking back towards the church from the East end of the churchyard

Looking North

Couple if crosses which are under the trees

This tomb looks quite old and is quite eroded

Above on the South East corner of the chapel I spotted this circle which has been carved, wondering if it was part of a Mass Dial.
Right looking East along the North side of the churchyard from the path

I will leave you this week with this shot of a cross that has ivy encroaching on it
I will try to return when I find out the Church is open again.
Till Next time Stay Safe and have a great Weekend

Wednesday 21 October 2020

St James Little Milton


This is a return visit To St James Little Milton for me as I have been here before many years ago but could only get photos of the outside. After visiting St Peter Great Haseley I found out that St James Little Milton was open. As I drove past it on my way home I decided to stop off and get a few photos of the church. I knew from the start the church was Victorian so was not expecting to see any older parts to the church that aside I thought it was worth stopping at. Only a couple of lines of history on Wikipedia:-

"The Church of England parish church of Saint James is a Gothic Revival building designed by John Hayward and built in 1844. Hayward also designed the west tower, which was added in 1861."


The the link at the beginning will show the exterior of the church and the small churchyard the photo above is a new photo from when I visited and looks across the churchyard

Inside I found the church quite airy and light

Looking down the nave to the chancel

Viewing into the chancel

In the chancel to the altar

Looking back towards the West end

Rather nice Pulpit

From the pulpit you see this view of the church

View of the West end and the stained glass window in it

You can see a lot of nice stained glass in the church

All of it of a different design

All of it showing different pictures of saints

Above the East window which is partly hidden by the altar screen.          On the left is a Royal coat of arms what is unusual is the fact it is of Queen Elizabeth II. First one I have seen.

The font which is near the entrance as you come in

Over on the South wall of the nave you can see the Roll of honour for Little Milton

The top plaque lists the fallen in the First World War  
The lower one the men who lost their lives in the Second World War

In one side of the chancel arch is the church banner 

On the North wall of the chancel beside the altar is a holy water stupe 

Either side of the altar you will see these beautiful candelabras

I will leave you with this cross with a heart behind that I spotted in the corner at the can of the church.
Till next time stay safe an have a peaceful weekend

Saturday 17 October 2020

Return to St Peter Great Haseley


  A return visit was on the cards and a lot sooner than I thought it would be  after I found out the church was open the same time as Great Milton, so after getting my photos I drove the short distance to the village and parked up outside. Sure enough the doors were open with a couple of people chatting inside. One of them was the Churchwarden who was very helpful letting be get a photo of a memorial in the Vestry. I found the church a lot more interesting than I expected it to be

Before I start be warned there are a lot of photos in this blog so I'd get a coffee and cake to read

Looking down the church from the cross aisle from the door to the chancel arch

Another view of the nave a little further back
The Chancel


One of the banks of choir stalls
The Chancel window in the East wall of the chancel

Above a curtain screen surrounds the altar which is topped by angels.
Right the Sedulla & Piscina

The rear curtain of the screen with the altar cross 

Looking back to the chancel arch and onto the nave

Over to the left of the chancel arch are these squints, the other side has one as well

Above the pulpit with left the view of the nave from it

Right looking towards the North aisle

Above the Lady chapel in the South aisle

Loong back East along the South aisle

Above the altar in the Lady Chapel

Left the font in the back of the South aisle

The tile on the wall surrounding the font look to be old floor tile 

Above the font which looks like it is from the middle ages.

Over by the South  wall a tomb effigy now on blocks

Along the North wall you find niches with old stone coffins and a tomb effigy on one

Tomb of Luke Taylor 

An stone coffin with half a lid

The far niche you find an old church chest 

Over to the side of the South aisle by the chancel a wood screen

The tomb effigy in the niche that is badly damaged

The church has some really nice stained glass that is worth looking at
This one is above the entrance in the West end
The other can be seen in eth North and South aisles
At the end of the North aisle in the East wall is this more modern stained glass window
This is in the chancel
as is this one near the Sedulla & Piscina
The stained glass no doubt dates from Victorian times
The saints names are beneath the figures
You can see this on in the South aisle above a niche
The North aisle

Looking near the altar in the North aise

Above the altar in the North aisle which is from the look around the middle ages.
Left a niche with older parts of church stone work of tome effigy 

Above the door looks like it is from a rood loft

Old brass memorials

This looks like a funerary death helmet and gloves
Memorial to Roger Gilderd-Somervel who was killed at Neuve Chapelle march 1st 1915
Oder memorial in latin 
Above the oval memorial is to Rev George white
Below is this one to Coronel Folliott Churchill
In one of the arches in the aisle is this memorial to Rev Johes Whistler
In a niche that was a door in the North aisle is the roll of honour  with a chair and outline of a soldier from the First World War who did not come home to take his place
The roll is hand written with their names
Before I left the church the churchwarden kindly let me in the vestry to get some photos of the memorial in there as it was part of a chapel once

The bust of the baron from the manor which is not seen often

Left the side of a vault  

Left a brass showing a figure praying

This one of a lady

The church chest you can see when you walk in the entrance in the West end
I will leave you this week with the church Bible on a lectern in the South aisle
Till next time Take care and have a peaceful weekend