Saturday, 28 November 2015

St Leonard’s Charlecote

My wife & I went to visit the house a month or so back and one of the first things I noticed going through the village was the Church so I persuaded her to let me visit after going round the house.
The church stands on the site of an earlier 12th century church on the edge of Charlecote Park. Most notable thing is it contains the Lucy Family Vault which dates back to 1595

The church as you see it when walking in the entrance to the churchyard

The west end where you enter the church and the rose window above

The south side with the belltower & spire

another view showing the south side of the church with the wonderful spire on the belltower

 Going inside the first thing you see is this view down the nave

 Then going into the chancel with its arched ceiling

 The altar with floral display and simple wooden cross. The East wall is decorated with an inscription on 

Look up and see this view of the beautiful stained glass window

Looking you you can see the wonderful arched ceiling. Over to the left is the Lucy Vault
 Where the remains of the Lucy Family dating back to 1500 are interred

These are some wonderful effigy's

This one has the graving  widow knelt by her husband
Sir Thomas Lucy is behind the pillars here. He died after falling off his horse

which is depicted here on the panel you see to the left

 He is leaning watching over his wife

There is a nice stained glass window in the Vault with scripture either side

There is certainly some very nice stained glass through out the church


Showing various scenes from the life of Jesus and some of the saints


 But the rose window in the west end is the most impressive

View of the choir stalls from the pulpit

The Nave looking from the pulpit

  Going back out to the churchyard you see these graves nearby

Round the north side are three tombs I presume of the one family

Further along older headstones can be seen

Going to the south side you see a mixture of old and new headstones

and if you look up you can see Gargoyles and Grotesques

On the corner a couple of angels
 This Grieving  woman was striking

The east end of the churchyard looked to have the oldest headstones 
Looking across to the west end of the churchyard

Have a wonderful weekend

Saturday, 21 November 2015

Return to Hampstead Norreys

I visited the church of St Mary the Virgin  a few years ago but at the time of the visit a service was going on so I left the church for another day. I must admit every time I have visited it had been raining or overcast and today was no different. 

The entrance to St Mary the Virgin

Less overcast than last time though I was thwarted going in as the church was being used at the time for a dance class so after bumping into a local I was informed they would be finished in a short time so I took a few more photos round the churchyard.

One thing you pass is this base of what looks to be an old preaching cross
The waether looked quite nice at the time

But the clouds brought a shower of rain

But at least it was not like the last time very misty

The east end of St Mary

The bell tower

Chancel Cross


The porch and on the right the bell tower. There was some occasion happening in the village that day so that is why the flags you see were in place

Before going in the church I wandered the churchyard

Visiting the new Village cemetery

The cross at the top was even more covered in Ivy and the older headstones still stood though fading 

The main churchyard had gained some  safety fencing round the tombs,which I thought was the local PC not wanting people to fall in and them get sued but I have been since told  the tombs involved are very ancient and, unfortunately, in a very fragile state of repair and at risk of collapsing. They have now been repared and I will be returning to get some photos of them

Park of the churchyard on the South East end had been cleared so the heastones were now easy to see

Cleared enough to see the wall

and a few of the old headstones  piled there

 As ever I was drawn to look at the cast tomb
which belongs  to the Lowsley Family

 They are remembered all round the tomb 

 and there is a Celtic cross nearby to Horace Lowsley

So to the inside of the church where I had to carefully take my photos to leave out some of the boxes of children's toys and partition boards that was in there.

The chancel which looked very light and set  off by the color of the altar cloth
Looking back towards the rear of the church and the balcony

 The church did have a fine looking Organ that had been fitted in an arch

It also had a carved stone pulpit and some nice floral decorations 

as you can see I had to contend with a few tables as well
View of the nave from the pulpit

I did come across a tomb in the floor with a fine coat of arms on it

Another thing of note is the church used to have a Rood Loft as the steps here tell

The church also had a fair few memorial around on the walls

Like this one to Reverend John Blissard who was vicar of the parish

This small one to Richard & Susan Drewe 

another older one to the Drewe Family

On the left are the remnants of a wall painting no doubt middle ages and on the right a memorial to Isaac Mathews who died in 1724

His wife Mary survived  a good many years longer

 A memorial to Jethro Lousley a churchwarden who died in 1918

A couple of carvings were evident under the where the plaster had been removed one with glass fronted frame to protect it

Small Celtic cross in an alcove

I was taken with the joists in the roof where on one you could see the date of 1635
 Pity the chancel did not have one

The local WI or WU were evident in their work with the kneelers. I always wonder if the beautiful banners you see in churches were also made by them

A simple wooden cross

The church seems to have two fonts which is very unusual

At the back is the roll of Honour for Hampstead Norreys

which reveals family names common to Berkshire

I'll leave you with this view through this wonderful old church
Have a peaceful Weekend