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Church of St Denis

A Grade II* Listed Building in Otterham, Cornwall

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Latitude: 50.6876 / 50°41'15"N

Longitude: -4.5944 / 4°35'39"W

OS Eastings: 216834

OS Northings: 90761

OS Grid: SX168907

Mapcode National: GBR N8.61NX

Mapcode Global: FRA 1788.7WK

Plus Code: 9C2QMCQ4+26

Entry Name: Church of St Denis

Listing Date: 17 December 1962

Grade: II*

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1143456

English Heritage Legacy ID: 68785

Location: Otterham, Cornwall, PL32

County: Cornwall

Civil Parish: Otterham

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: Otterham, Saint Juliot and Lesnewth

Church of England Diocese: Truro

Tagged with: Church building

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SX 19 SE
3/112 Church of St Denis

Parish church. Possibly with Norman origins; Norman impost mouldings at springing
point of tower arch and remains of two Norman fonts. Circa C13 font, circa C15 4-bay
arcade, some circa C16 tracery and tower possibly rebuilt in 1702 (Maclean, cited by
Sedding) reusing earlier material. Church heavily restored between 1889 and 1904.
Tower of roughly coursed local stone with granite plinth and large granite quoins.
Nave, chancel and south aisle of snecked slate stone rubble with dressed quoins.
Slate roof; nave and chancel in one.
The extensive C19 restoration hinders accurate chronological analysis of plan. The
church, which appears to have Norman origins may have possibly comprised nave,
chancel, north aisle and west tower. The north transept was removed in the mid C19
and the north wall of the nave was probably largely rebuilt. The tower appears to
contain Norman impost mouldings at the springing point of the tower arch; the west
door is circa C16 and the belfry lights are also probably contemporary indicating
probably C16 rebuilding. Maclean suggests that the tower was rebuilt in 1702
(Sedding). In circa C15 a 4-bay south aisle was added and the tracery in the east
window of the south aisle and towards the west end of the nave is probably C16,
possibly contemporary with the rebuilding of the tower. The C19 restoration included
part rebuilding of at least the outer skin of masonry to the south aisle, nave,
chancel and south porch; extensive refenestration, the re-roofing of the nave,
chancel, south aisle and south porch and the refurnishing of the church. Prior to
1850 part of an old coloured rood-screen was recorded (Sedding).
West tower of two stages with battlemented parapet and crocketted finials. Circa C16
granite arch to west door with cavetto and roll moulded jambs, incised spandrels and
hood mould. C19 plank door. C19 west window in partly blocked opening with pointed
relieving arch and 2-light belfry openings with slate louvers.
North wall of nave has a C16 Perpendicular 3-light window towards the west end; 4-
centred arch and the two outer lights with cusped heads. C19 3-light chancel window
and C19 2-light window in south side of chancel. South aisle; east window similar to
C16 window in nave. Three 3-light C19 windows in south wall of nave. Gabled south
porch with 4-centred granite arch, roll and hood mould. C19 roof with piece of
carved wall plate reset on east wall. Inside porch stone bench. South door has 4-
centred granite arch with tall pyramid stops and C19 plank door.
Interior : Plastered internal walls. Nave, chancel and south aisle with renewed C19
waggon roof and renewed carved bosses in chancel. Two pieces of carved ribs from the
earlier roof have been reset on the north wall. 4-bay arcade of circa C15; 4-centred
granite arches with triple cavetto mould and type A (Pevsner) piers with moulded
capitals and bases. Tower arch of dressed stone; segmental arch with granite moulded
imposts. Circa C16 granite basket arch at entrance to stair of tower.
C19 furnishings of pitch pine, C19 pulpit and altar table. Piscina in south wall of
chancel with cusped head, chamfer and run-out stops. Possibly circa C13 font,
heavily restored with octagonal shaft, unlined bowl and square base. Remains of two
probably Norman fonts at west end of nave, one with round bowl and the other with an
hexagonal bowl. Slate flag floors to nave and south aisle and glazed C19 ceramic
tiles in chancel.
Memorials : Last wall of south aisle, slate ledger stone to Mary, wife of Abel French
who died in 1652; wall engraved in italic and cursive script with coat of arms and
verse beginning :
Faith, vertue, patience, love, and all in all
This godly matron had even at her call . . .
North wall of nave, slate ledger stone of Johan, wife of William Moyers and daughter
of John Avery of Kernick, died 1721. Slate ledger stone in tower to Alice, wife of
William Grigg, died 1684. Verse :
Here Alice doth intoumbed lye
Whose spirit mounteth to the starrye skie
Unto the poore shee had A Good regard
Which dailye cry Heaven be thy reward.
Several ledger stones remonted on outer wall of chancel including slate stone to
member of French family who died in 1660.
Pevsner, N and Radcliffe, E The Buildings of England, Cornwall 2nd ed. 1970.
Polsue, J Lakes Parochial History of the County of Cornwall Vol IV, 1872 reprinted
Sedding, E H Norman Architecture in Cornwall, a handbook of old Cornish
Ecclesiastical Architecture 1909.
Sites and Monuments Register, Truro.
Information from Rev. D. Nash.

Listing NGR: SX1683490761

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