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Church of St Mary the Virgin

A Grade I Listed Building in Cheriton Bishop, Devon

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Latitude: 50.7287 / 50°43'43"N

Longitude: -3.7395 / 3°44'22"W

OS Eastings: 277325

OS Northings: 93566

OS Grid: SX773935

Mapcode National: GBR QH.MK08

Mapcode Global: FRA 3714.YTQ

Plus Code: 9C2RP7H6+F6

Entry Name: Church of St Mary the Virgin

Listing Date: 26 August 1965

Grade: I

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1105969

English Heritage Legacy ID: 95134

Location: Cheriton Bishop, Mid Devon, Devon, EX6

County: Devon

District: Mid Devon

Civil Parish: Cheriton Bishop

Built-Up Area: Cheriton Bishop

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Cheriton Bishop St Mary

Church of England Diocese: Exeter

Tagged with: Church building

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Cheriton Bishop



10/34 Church of St Mary the Virgin


Parish Church. Norman origins. C13 chancel. C15 nave, north aisle and tower;
south wall and porch rebuilt and interior renovated 1884. Chancel of plastered
rubble with volcanic dressings; north aisle and tower of granite ashlar with some
granite detail replaced by Beerstone; south wall of nave and south porch of
snecked volcanic stone with granite, Beerstone and volcanic detail; slate roofs
and red tiles to porch. Early Decorated east window to chancel but side lancets
suggest earlier date; the rest is Perpendicular. Plan comprises nave with lower
and narrower chancel; a north aisle with east chapel under separate roof; west
tower; south porch and small C19 south porch to chancel. Large unrestored west
tower of three stages has diagonal buttresses rising above embattled parapet as
pinnacles; 2-light, round-headed granite belfry windows on all sides, and, in west
side, a moulded, arched doorway and 3-light Perpendicular window with granite
tracery and hood mould (the lower drip mould rises over top of window). South side
of nave is largely 1884 work. Gable-ended porch with diagonal buttresses, moulded
granite arch and moulded volcanic under-cloaking beneath gable which is surmounted
by terracotta fleure cross. 3 nave windows; restored C15 volcanic 2-light
window with round heads to left of porch, C19 volcanic Decorated-style to right,
and, to right end, beyond a buttress, a 3-light Perpendicular window apparently in
situ (original granite sides and hood mould but restored Beerstone tracery). At
right end C19 masonry encloses turret for rood stair. Chancel with 3 lancet
windows has broad pilaster buttress left of centre and small monopitch stone-roofed
porch with shoulder-headed doorway right of centre. Partly restored early
decorated window with geometric tracery in east end and single lancet to north.
North aisle with off-set buttresses to corners and 5 restored Perpendicular windows
(original granite sills) with intervening buttresses.
Interior. Nave, aisle and chancel have ceiled wagon roofs; original in chancel
with carved oak bosses and moulded wall plate with 4-leaf motifs at intervals:
aisle retains some original carpentry but nave appears mostly C19 renovation-work.
5-bay granite arcade to north aisle (fifth arch between chancel and north chapel)
resting on moulded piers (Pevsner's Cornish A type) with undecorated capitals.
High tower arch has square sides, chamfered corners, plain imposts and chamfered
double arch ring. C15 south door of studded oak plank construction with applied
tracery defining 4 trefoil-headed panels in C19 stone arch. Flagged floor includes
several inscribed C17 gravestones. Granite arch to stairs to rood loft in south
wall. South chancel wall includes small arch-headed piscina. Hollow-chamfered
rear arches to north aisle windows which include fragments of C15 stained glass.
Small isolated patches of mural painting on north wall. 3-bays of late C15 8-bay
oak rood screen reset as parclose with central door across north aisle. Although
partly restored it is of very high quality with delicate carving and includes 12
original painted figure panels in blind tracery. Another painted fragment of the
screen is mounted on south wall. Late C11 Beerstone font is a profusely decorated
girdled tub on a circular base on C20 granite plinth. Partly restored C16 oak
pulpit with octagonal drum on stem; the 5 panelled sides have elaborate carvings
including birds, grotesque heads, a mermaid and harpy. 8 C15 oak benches in south
aisle with carved ends showing 2 tiers of recessed trefoil-headed panels with
crenellated rail between. Other furnishings are late C19 featuring oak choirstalls
with carved ends and wrought ironwork, both by local craftsmen. The ironwork is
distinctively bold and on the heavy strap hinges of the west tower door the date
1873 and a series of initials are inscribed. At east end of south wall good late
C17 marble monument to the Daveys of Medland Manor, the inscription of an oval
medallion flanked by Corinthian columns with moulded cornice under arms and
flanking cartouches and sill on consoles. On north wall of chancel a brass to
R.L. Pennell who died in Zanzibar in 1872 and depicts a
missionary ship and African isle. 2 painted achievements of the Royal Arms, rare
arms of Elizabeth I over south door and arms of George II dated 1735 in north
aisle. A fragment of Nottingham alabaster, found during renovation work, is
mounted on south wall; it depicts head of Christ carrying the Cross, 2 soldiers
and another head, possibly Simon of Cyrene. In north aisle lead plaque is
inscribed 'Richard Dicker, James Lob, Wardins, 1704'. Belfry not inspected.
Sources K.M.Clarke, The Baptismal Fonts of Devon:Part II
Trans. Devon. Assoc. 46 (1914), p432-3.

Listing NGR: SX7732493567

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