CHURCH OF ST MARY THE VIRGIN
- Heritage Category:
- Listed Building
- List Entry Number:
- Date first listed:
- Statutory Address:
- CHURCH OF ST MARY THE VIRGIN
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- Statutory Address:
- CHURCH OF ST MARY THE VIRGIN
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
- Wychavon (District Authority)
- National Grid Reference:
- SO 95425 64393
SO 96 SE; 4/54 (11/1)
Church of St Mary the Virgin
Parish church. C13 on older site, C14 alterations, late C18 rebuilding by Thomas Johnson of Worcester, restored c1860 by G E Street. Part dressed, coursed sandstone rubble, part sandstone ashlar, slate and plain-tiled roofs with parapets at gable ends. West tower, four-bay nave with north and south aisles, three-bay chancel with north and south transepts, north vestry and south chapel. Early English and Georgian styles.
West tower: rebuilt 1793; three stages, three strings and chamfered plinth; diagonal corner buttresses and pointed-arched cusped panels. Lowest stage serves as porch, west entrance having a heavily moulded ogee-arched and tall finialed surround; large oculus in side elevation and north pointed doorway. Second stage has pointed Y-traceried windows with sill string and oculus above. The belfry stage has similar windows with louvred openings and above is a panelled frieze and embattled parapet with crocketted corner pinnacles, restored mid-C20. Nave: C13; north aisle C14 and both aisles rebuilt late C18; four bays; north aisle has separate roof, diagonal corner buttresses and four large raking buttresses; two windows with pointed arches incorporating some C14 stonework and with no tracery (the easternmost is blocked) and two square-headed windows; the west end elevation has a blocked pointed doorway. The south aisle has a single pitch roof, diagonal corner buttresses and also buttresses at bay divisions; blocked doorway and window to west and pointed window without tracery in second bay from east; west end elevation has a pointed window reconstructed from C13 masonry with a hood mould. Above, in the nave roof, are two flat-roofed dormers. Chancel: c1860 by Street; three bays with buttresses at gable ends; 3-light east window has hood mould with foliated stops and continuous sill string; pointed windows without tracery at north-east and south-east end; north transept gable end has four cusped lancets beneath a rose window; the vestry projects from its east side elevation and has three cusped lancets and a door facing north and a rose window in its east gable end; the south transept has a parallel east wing and together they house the Vernon chapel; the transept gable end has a central pointed doorway with nookshafts and an outer dog-tooth and an inner rosette moulding; above is a 3-light window with hoodmould and foliated stops; the adjacent gable end has a gabled monument at its base to Thomas Bowater Vernon, died 1859; above is a rose window with a hoodmould returning to form a string; the east side elevation has a dog-tooth eaves moulding and a 3-light window.
INTERIOR: four-bay, pointed-arched arcade of two chamfered orders; south arcade is c1210 and has circular columns, one still having a trumpet-scalloped capital; north arcade has octagonal columns and re-used C14 capitals. Pointed tower arch of three chamfered orders is blocked and flanked by semicircular headed niches. Chancel arch is pointed, has dog-tooth moulding and is supported on short columns with foliated capitals; Street has used similar detailing throughout the chancel. Wagon roofs throughout, plastered in nave and aisles and ornately painted in the chancel and transepts. Chancel has piscina, sedilia and aumbry, the continuous east window sill string forming a hood above them. Other fittings include a Last Supper reredos and cast-iron altar rails and parcloses. The Vernon Chapel has a C17 oak altar table from St Helen's, Worcester, and in the north transept is an elaborately painted organ case. The nave has a C19 font, late C18 box pews now reduced in height, an elegant late C18 west gallery and some C17 panelling. In the north aisle are the original artist's models of the Nativity and Resurrection panels for the reredos of Liverpool Cathedral and in the south aisle is an early C16 relief and, the parish chest. In the tower is a late C18 bread dole cupboard and more C17 panelling.
Memorials: numerous good examples including, in the Vernon Chapel, a large monument to Thomas Vernon, died 1721, by Stanton and Horsnaile with semi-reclining effigy flanked by figures of Justice and Learning and, behind, Corinthian columns support an open pediment; also a standing monument of Bowater Vernon, died 1835, by Roubiliac, a large marble relief panel by Chantrey to Thomas Taylor Vernon, died 1837, and a late C17 memorial to Richard Vernon, died 1678. In the chancel is a wall memorial to Richard Vernon, died 1627, with two kneeling figures set within a recess, and in the nave a large relief panel to Thomas Vernon, died 1771.
Glass: C19, in east window, Vernon Chapel and north transept.
The church has undergone several major rebuildings, including Street's elaborate east end; it contains some interesting sculpture, including several large monuments, and some late C18 fittings.
Listing NGR: SO9542564392
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
- Legacy System number:
- Legacy System:
Books and journals
Doubleday, AH, Page, W, The Victoria History of the County of Worcester, (1913), 375-9
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: Worcestershire, (1968), 183-4
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