All Saints - Pickwell, Leicestershire
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member SMacB
N 52° 41.657 W 000° 50.338
30U E 646041 N 5840454
Quick Description: All Saints' church, Main Street, Pickwell.
Location: East Midlands, United Kingdom
Date Posted: 8/15/2018 2:03:08 PM
Waymark Code: WMYZJD
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member Dorcadion Team
Views: 1

Long Description:
"There was a priest, and presumably a church, at Pickwell in 1086. The church was not given to any religious house, but in 1220 it was recorded that Monks Kirby Priory (Warws.) was entitled to take three sheaves from John of Sproxton's demesne lands at Pickwell. Since that priory's founder was Geoffrey de Wirce, the Domesday tenant-in-chief of Pickwell, the grant may have originated with him. A chapel, no doubt dependent on the church at Pickwell, was mentioned in the hamlet of Leesthorpe in the early 14th century; it was 'decayed' in 1642, and no more is known of it. The rectory was by 1940 held together with Owston and Withcote, the incumbent being resident at Pickwell. In 1959 it was joined with Somerby and Burrough on the Hill.

Early in the 13th century the advowson of Pickwell was in dispute. In 1214 Roger de Camville claimed it from Hugh of Morwic and John of Sproxton. Roger and John, after some litigation, came to an agreement, the terms of which are not known. In 1218 Roger successfully claimed the right to present against Hugh of Morwic, and it was then stated that neither Hugh nor any of his ancestors had ever presented to Pickwell, and that Isabel de Camville, presumably Roger's ancestress, had formerly bestowed the living on a relative. Subsequently Roger and John made a further agreement. About 1220 they were joint patrons, presenting alternately. John did in fact present to Pickwell at some date not later than 1218. There were further disputes, and in an action concerning the advowson between a later John of Sproxton, presumably the heir of the John previously mentioned, and Robert de Curzon, John was successful. About 1248-9 both Hugh of Morwic and Gilbert of Seagrave at first attempted to present to Pickwell, but both withdrew, and John of Sproxton was able to present. There is no record of any of the Camville family ever having in fact presented, but in 1274 John of Sproxton presented again. After John's death the advowson evidently descended to his two nieces and co-heirs, and in 1297 Roger le Brabazon, husband of one niece, acquired it from the two daughters of the other. The advowson subsequently descended with the manor until 1931, when it was acquired by Canford School (Dors.). In 1945 the patronage came into the possession of the Martyrs' Memorial and Church of England Trust, which still held it in 1954. After 1959 it was exercised alternately by the former patrons of the two parishes with which Pickwell was united.

The rectory was assessed at 12 marks in 1254 and at £13 6s. 8d. in 1291. It was worth £16 in 1535 and £50 in 1650. The living was augmented from Queen Anne's Bounty shortly before 1776, and in 1831 it was worth £539.

In 1638 the rector agreed that all tithes from Elizabeth Hicks, Viscountess Camden's land in Pickwell should be replaced by an annual payment of £60. The tithes of the whole parish were in 1845 commuted for £527 a year. Before the inclosure the glebe consisted of 17 a. in Rye Field, 13 a. in North Field, 19 a. in Langhill Field, 2 a. called Little Robin Holm, and 12 a. allowed for 12 cows. The rector recorded that he was forced to yield to the inclosure, but an equal amount of land, 63 a., was allotted, lying in 5 closes. In 1674 the glebe inclosures totalled 60 a.; the area of glebe varied only slightly during the 19th century and was still 60 a. in 1948. The former Rectory was built in 1856 at a cost of £1,200. It is a gabled stone house in the Tudor style of the period. Local tradition has it that this was a shooting lodge of the earls of Gainsborough and that the Rectory which it replaced was allowed to fall into ruins. A symmetrically-fronted 18th-century house shown in Nichols's view of the church may have been this earlier Rectory.

A cottage at Pickwell, which had been given as the endowment of a light in the church, was seised under the Chantry Act and in 1559 was granted to Sir George Howard.

The rectory was vacant by deprivation in 1554 and in the 1640's the rector, John Cave, was after much ill-treatment expelled from the benefice. Cave's son William (1637-1713) was the author of a number of religious works.

The church of ALL SAINTS consists of chancel, clerestoried nave with north and south aisles, south porch, and west tower. It is built of ironstone with limestone dressings, except for the 15th-century tower which is of grey limestone ashlar. The only visible remains of the Norman church are a fragment of ornament which has been built into the north clerestory and the tub-shaped font, carved with chevrons and intersecting arcades.

The earliest feature in the fabric of the church is the north arcade which dates from the early 13th century. This is of four bays and has semi-circular arches and circular piers with 'water-holding' bases and carved capitals; one of the central capitals has foliated ornament. The arcade originally extended one bay further east, which may indicate the existence of a former chapel, now demolished, at the east end of the north aisle. The blocked arch to this fifth bay is still visible, both internally and externally, in the north wall of the chancel. The north aisle itself appears to have been rebuilt in the late 13th and early 14th centuries. The windows in the north wall include two of two cusped pointed lights with an encircled quatrefoil in each head; a third has three lights with intersecting tracery. The aisle contains three low-arched tomb recesses. Extensive building operations in the earlier 14th century included the building of the south aisle with its fourbay arcade, the reconstruction of the chancel, and, finally, the addition of a clerestory to the nave. The south arcade has pointed arches of two chamfered orders which spring from slender circular piers with carved capitals. A curious feature is a blocked lancet opening which is visible on the south side of the short stretch of wall which continues the line of the arcade at its east end. It has been suggested that this may represent a very narrow doorway to a rood-loft stair; alternatively it may have been an early-13thcentury window in the external wall of the church before the aisle was built. The south doorway has shafted jambs and carved capitals. These capitals and those of the porch arch have profiles which correspond to those of the south arcade. In general the south aisle is a more elaborate structure than the north: externally the buttresses have trefoil ornament at string level and deep niches above. The aisle contains two arched recesses for tombs and a pointed piscina with broached stops to the jambs. One altered window with forking tracery remains in the south wall but both ends of the aisle were altered in the 15th century. The early-14th-century chancel has three windows with curvilinear tracery, one now blocked. Externally the south wall has a continuous string which forms part of the hoodmould of the priest's door, is stepped down further west to sill level, and raised again at the junction of chancel and south aisle. The buttresses on this wall may have been added later. Considerable re-facing with grey limestone has taken place externally, possibly in the 15th century, and this is most noticeable on the north chancel wall. The present large east window is modern, replacing one of similar proportions, the pointed head of which had been blocked by the late 18th century. A nearby buttress is dated 1774. The chancel contains triple-stepped sedilia with pointed heads, and a round-headed piscina with its bowl intact. On the east wall there is a carved bracket of the early 14th century. There is no chancel arch and the continuation of the north arcade eastwards from the nave indicates that there has been no structural division between nave and chancel since at least the 13th century. The clerestory, added to the nave towards the middle of the 14th century, has small two-light windows with two types of flowing tracery.

The west tower, probably built early in the 15th century, rises in three stages to an embattled parapet with angle pinnacles and prominent gargoyles. The heavy plinth moulding is continuous round the angle buttresses. The belfry stage has tall paired openings of two transomed lights with traceried heads. The tower arch, opening into the nave, has a hoodmould with carved stops which are similar to those on the small west window in the lowest stage of the tower. Other 15th-century work in the church includes the provision of a low-pitched roof and parapets to the chancel, as well as an embattled parapet to the south aisle. The east wall of the south aisle, with its partially restored window, is of the same period, as is the tall canopied niche at this end of the aisle. It is possible that 15th-century alterations were responsible for the disappearance of the extra bay at the east end of the north aisle. The east end of the aisle has a window of this date and the north wall of the chancel, which contains the blocked arch of the arcade, may well have been reconstructed at the same time.

About 1692 both the church fabric and its furnishings were found to be decayed. In the late 18th century the church was twice examined by the archdeacon, and on both occasions it was found to be generally well-maintained, though minor repairs were ordered. In 1832 the chancel and porch needed repair. Ten years later the chancel was again criticized, and the pulpit and reading desk were considered inadequate. In 1861 the church was extensively restored; the nave, chancel, and aisles were given new roofs, the south porch and south aisle were much repaired, new pews, pulpit, and reading desk were provided, the plaster was removed from the walls, and the arch between the base of the tower and the nave was opened. It was planned to build a chancel arch, but this was not carried out because the necessary funds were not forthcoming. New choir stalls and a new altar were provided in 1897, and in 1911 the tower and church roof were repaired.

On the north wall of the chancel are two memorials, one in the Gothic style of the period to the Revd. John Bright (d. 1843) and his wife Elizabeth (d. 1831), the other, in grey marble, to John Brown (d. 1734) and his wife Mary (d. 1746). Other memorials preserved in the tower commemorate Frances Dickinson (d. 1757) and Edward Muxloe (d. 1795) and his wife Elizabeth (d. 1830); on the south wall of the tower is a more elaborate white marble tablet to Rowland Brown (d. 1712) and his wife Anne (d. 1733). A fine ornamented monument to Lt. Charles J. Harris (d. 1791) was noted by Nichols but no longer remains. Several old grave slabs of stone and alabaster have been reset in the tower floor. A charity board hangs above the tower stair door.

The church plate consists of a fine chalice of 1600 and two pewter plates. There are four bells: (i) from its inscription, was given by William Cave; (ii) and (iii) also of unknown date; (iv) 1893. The registers date from 1573 and are substantially complete."

SOURCE - (visit link)
Building Materials: Stone

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