Saturday 28 May 2022

St Andrew Sandford on Thames


For some reason I missed seeing this church on the OS Map and only by chance noticed it while looking for the way to visit Littlemore church after that it was trying to fit the visit in which came one Wednesday morning early. I had arranged to pick the key up from the churchwarden which I had intended to do but on arrival I noticed the church was open. My thanks to the churchwarden for opening it early for me.

"In the middle of the 12th century a small "field church" dedicated to Saint Andrew was built on a hill in the Sandford manorial grounds for the use of the nearby Minchery nuns. The original Norman porch was restored and repaired in 1652 through the generosity of Elizabeth Isham but the majority of the improvement works to the church took place in the 25 years between 1840 and 1865. In the centre of the graveyard stands a fine yew tree planted on Good Friday 1800 and just to the east of the porch is a flat-topped gravestone from which bread was handed out to the poor of the parish. Four war memorials are on the south wall in St Andrew’s church: a wooden village shrine which lists the fallen of both World Wars, and three individual commemorative plaques to E.G. Wilkins, H.S. Cannon and H.C. Cannon. Each has been recorded and included in the National Inventory of War Memorials at the Imperial War Museum."

 From the south west across the churchyard

From the road the church is partly hidden by Yew trees

 It was nearly 8:30 am and I spotted the sign telling me it was open which I did not expect.

I went around the north side for a photo not taking one of the tower from the west due not being able to get a good view of  it there

Walking east along the churchyard was the best place to get a reasonable view of the church

The going around the south side for another shot

I had to go around to the park next door to take any type of photo of the east end

From further away you see the vestry that has been added

Going back  towards the entrance you get a good view of the churchyard and church

Walking down the path you can see older headstones over to the left

Looking over to the right more headstones are in evidence

Nearer the church looking left towards the old school you find more old headstones

Going around the north side you can see a lot more headstones

A cast iron cross seems lost in the long grass in contrast to the white marble one 

Graves near the church

Looking back west along more recent burials

Collage of some graves including two commonwealth war graves

The porch leading to the church where you can see the door partly open

The plaque commemorates the the restoration of the church back in 1652, the plaque looks a lot newer than that

Inside the porch the door leading in. I found the church quite dark so some the photos are with the lighting on or off

The chancel

Looking back towards the bell playing area under the tower

The altar with the single east window

From near the centre of the church showing the nave and chancel arch, to the left is the north aisle

Another view from by the bell playing area

Walking down to the nave to get a photo of the chancel arch

The chancel with choir stalls either side

Closer view of the altar and east window

The altar with cross and candle holders

Looking back though the church from inside the chancel

To the left of the chancel arch the pulpit

Looking down in the nave

and the chancel

This carving is on the south wall of the chancel by the arch

The bell pulling area which also houses pews

Inside you can see this memorial on the south wall

Arranged around the wall of the tower most of the belonging to one family

The war memorial which was a shine in the village now hangs in the church

War memorials dedicated to three men who dies in both wars

The church also has beautiful stained glass

This lancet being one of my favourites

The north aisle with a grand piano and font

At the back an are set aside for the younger members of the parish

The font with a kneeler on the step

The organ which looks like it has been in an accident 

The church retains it's old lighting abet updated to electric

I will leave you with this view of the altar cross with vases of flowers beside it
Till next time have a peaceful weekend

Remember in your thoughts the 19 children and two teachers who were murdered at the elementary school in Uvalde Texas

Saturday 21 May 2022

St Bartholomew Yarnton Pt2


This week we return to St Bartholomew Yarnton to have a look around the onside of this wonderful old church. From the outside St Bartholomew looks interesting and often you find it is not the case inside. On this occasion I did wonder as I walked in but looking up the south aisle I could see it would be very interesting as as I walked around it became even more so. Get a coffee and join me

 The porch on the south side of the church, good sign the door is open

In the porch the door leading to the church

Around the sides of the porch is a freeze

Both sides showing though now painted

Inside you first view over the south aisle and an interesting arch to the right

The nave

Above the chancel arch the remnants of medieval wall art 

The view though the arch dominated by the present altar

with a beautiful modern altar covering

In the chancel with the altar table at the end in front of the east window

From the altar we look back the other way to the arch and present altar, for some reason I did not get a photo from behind the altar of the nave

The pulpit with floral display in front

from the pulpit I did take a shot of the nave an south aisle

And another into the chancel

When I first came in on looking right I notice the screened chapel

The other direction is also screened off for the bell pulling and a kitchen, it was locked

So into the chapel at the end of the south aisle. I took this with a wide angle lense

Which was also useful to get a shot of both tombs

The first on in white and black dates back to the 17th century

Sir Thomas Spencer stands with his daughters on the sides while I presume his wife & son stand either side

This one I found even more impressive

The tomb effigies are outstanding in colour. I might add underneath are two sons and five daughters kneeling facing each other

The coat of arms above

I noticed this bench and table in the centre no doubt for the mother and baby group that meet here

It is worth looking at closely with the churchwardens names on the end and handles

The other end is a give away being a hand byre for carrying the dead to the grave on. One of the better ones I've seen

This is one of the two fonts, one is original Norman

The other a Perpendicular Gothic one from about 1400 from St Michael at North gate in Oxford

I like the carvings around the outside

A chest tomb near the back of the church between aisles

I did think it was older but I could see the date was from the 1800's

Now there are some beautiful windows with stained glass inserts with the largest collection of early 17th century heraldic glass

both large and small lancet ones

The stained glass inserts really made me look twice

It dates from the 15th & 16th century's

Reminder of Charles I which was around Oxford for a while keeping away from Cromwell till his night march well more like running away march

Another Spence memorial

This is a bequest that makes interesting reading, I like how he remembered to have cakes given to the poor kids 
Small Statue of St Bartholomew 

ceiling in the Spencer chapel

The organ at the back of the church

Nearly forgot this roll of honour names who are all to familiar with me which always makes me wonder if they had been related to people I know

A last look at this beautiful old church

 I will leave you with this shot of a lancet window that has some 15th century stained glass in it.
Before I go Early this week the Church  Explorer Blog passed 200,000 page visits so I would like to thank every one who visits, follows or subscribes for looking.
Thank You
Till next time Have a peaceful weekend