St Mary's Church, Houghton Conquest
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member bill&ben
N 52° 03.681 W 000° 28.737
30U E 672821 N 5770861
Quick Description: St Mary’s Church, Houghton Conquest is the largest parish church in Bedfordshire.
Location: Eastern England, United Kingdom
Date Posted: 9/22/2009 9:36:42 AM
Waymark Code: WM799A
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member Dorcadion Team
Views: 4

Long Description:
The church of All Saints is a spacious and elegant structure, chiefly in the Perpendicular style, consisting of chancel, nave, aisles, south porch and an embattled tower of the Decorated period, containing 6 bells.

The nave dates from c. 1340, the tower was begun in 1393, and the chancel with it; the north vestry and the south porch are of the 15th century. In the same century the nave clerestory was added and the aisle walls heightened, flat-pitched roofs being put over nave and aisles.

The walls of the aisles bear traces of frescoes, the designs of which are in some parts sufficiently distinct to be distinguished: over the north doorway is a huge painting of St. Christopher, of the 15th century : on the north wall of the chancel is a monument of carved alabaster consisting of a species of framework in which is set the figure of Dr. Archer, rector, 1579-1620, in the act of exhortation, with book in hand, and partially resting upon a cushion; attached is a partially effaced inscription in Latin; he died in 1620: there is also an altar slab to Dame Ann Clearke, 1644; and two brasses to members of the Conquest family.

The church was restored in 1870 by the late Sir G. Gilbert Scott R.A, the walling being rebuilt in parts and the stonework of the windows for the most part renewed. The stained east window, erected in 1880 by the late Very Rev. John Burgon M.A. Dean of Chichester (d. 1888) is a memorial to three benefactors, Eliza Hargrave and Mary and Sarah Windle.

Information extracted from: 'Parishes: Houghton Conquest', A History of the County of Bedford: Volume 3 (1912), pp. 288-296. and Kelly's Directory - Bedfordshire – 1898.
Building Materials: Stone

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