Heritage Category:
Listed Building
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Date first listed:
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Statutory Address:

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

East Devon (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
ST 24554 08195


YARCOMBE YARCOMBE ST 20 NW 7/186 Church of St John the Baptist 22.2.55 GV I Parish church. C15, but more than one building phase and the latest maybe early C16; restored 1889 - 91 at which time the chancel was rebuilt. Local stone and flint rubble with Beerstone and Hamstone ashlar detail; lead roof to nave, aisles transepts and porch, slate to chancel. Plan: relatively large parish church with cruciform plan, north and south aisles, west tower, south porch and C19 vestry and organ loft on north side of the chancel. Most of the church is Perpendicular in style but the C19 chancel is Decorated. Exterior: tall west tower of 3 stages with diagonal buttresses and embattled parapet with carved gargoyle waterspouts. Semi-octagonal stair turret on the north side. The belfry has large 2-light windows with Perpendicular tracery and plain hoodmoulds. On the west side there is a 2-centred arch doorway with moulded surround and above it a 3-light window with Perpendicular tracery, above that a small 2-light window with crank-headed lights to the ringing floor and above that an iron clockface. Both aisles are 3 bays with embattled parapets but they are a little different. The south aisle parapet is all Hams tone ashlar and the gargoyle waterspouts are carved as characatured people. The south porch is in the same style with embattled parapet and diagonal buttresses. It contains a 2-centred outer arch with moulded surround and plain hoodmould; the south doorway is similar. The low pitch roof of the porch is C15 in style but probably a C19 replacement with moulded ribs and carved oak bosses. Each side of the porch are square-headed 3-light windows with cinquefoil headed lights and plain hoodmoulds. There is another in the west end. The north aisle parapet is stone rubble with ashlar coping. There is a moulded eaves cornice here interrupted by carved gargoyle waterspouts and other grotesque carvings. In the centre of the aisle is a Tudor arch doorway with carved foliate spandrels and hoodmould with carved human head label stops. Each side are 3-light windows with Perpendicular tracery and hoodmouls with carved human head label stops. (There is another in the west end). The ends of each transept contains a 3-light window with Perpendicular tracery and hoodmoulds but only the northern window has carved human head label stops. Also the south transept has a plain gable whereas the north transept gable has an embattled parapet continuous with that of the north aisle. A rood stair turret projects in the angle of the south transept and chancel. The chancel windows have Decorated tracery; there are 2 3-light windows with Priests doorway between on the south side, a large 3-light window in the east end and a small 3-light window in the squint between the north transept and chancel. The vestry is Tudor Gothic in style. Interior: the nave and south transept have repaired open wagon roofs with moulded ribs and purlins and replacement carved oak bosses. The north transept has a low pitch roof of moulded intersecting beams with replacement carved oak bosses, and the lean-to aisle roofs are similar. The chancel has a boarded wagon roof in the same style as the nave but it is wholly C19. Tall tower arch with moulded surround. Both aisles have 3-bay Hamstone arcades with a fourth arch to the transept; moulded piers (Pevsner's type A) with caps to the shafts only. At the east end of the each aisle is an arch springing from corbels carved as an angels. There is a hagioscope from the south transept to the chancel and alongside it a narrow doorway to the disused road stair. There is a trefoil-headed piscine in the south transept and another in the sanctuary. Tall arch from chancel to organ loft. The walls are plastered. The floor is mainly parquet blocks but there are C19 encaustic tiles in the sanctuary. Large and ornate C19 carved oak reredos in Gothic style featuring a painted triptych. Contemporary altar table and altar rail which is oak on wrought iron twin standards with scrolled brackets. Stalls are also late C19, oak with an open Gothic arcade on the frontals. 2 small prayer desks are in the same style but incorporate high quality C16 carved bench ends featuring representations of St John the Baptist, St James, St Peter and the Virgin and Child. The Gothic style lectern is said to be made up of pieces from an earlier pulpit and it has linenfold panels. Plain pine benches. Good C15 Hamstone font has an octagonal bowl with quatrefoil panels enriched with fourleaf motifs, there are badges and rosettes around the base and the plinth and stem have trefoil-headed panels. The tower screen is dated 1986. Good late C19 hanging lamp holders throughout the church, the best one is them brass one in the chancel. A C17 oak table is used as an altar in the south transept and there is a probably C17 oak chest in the north transept. The only memorials are a couple of C20 ones in the chancel. The tracery of the north transept end window includes some good C15 stained glass including complete figures. More C15 glass fragments have been assembled in the north squint window to the chancel. Some C19 stained glass in the south aisle. Source: Church guide.

Listing NGR: ST2455508198


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

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Books and journals
'Church of St John the Baptist Guide' in Church of St John the Baptist Guide, ()


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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Date: 24 Sep 2003
Reference: IOE01/07152/04
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Patrick J. Stow. Source Historic England Archive
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