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Church of St Mary the Virgin

A Grade I Listed Building in Warley, Essex

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Latitude: 51.5864 / 51°35'10"N

Longitude: 0.2921 / 0°17'31"E

OS Eastings: 558888

OS Northings: 189990

OS Grid: TQ588899

Mapcode National: GBR XQ.L9J

Mapcode Global: VHHN9.0DR7

Plus Code: 9F32H7PR+GR

Entry Name: Church of St Mary the Virgin

Listing Date: 20 February 1976

Grade: I

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1197210

English Heritage Legacy ID: 373439

Location: Brentwood, Essex, CM13

County: Essex

Electoral Ward/Division: Warley

Traditional County: Essex

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Essex

Church of England Parish: Great Warley St Mary the Virgin

Church of England Diocese: Chelmsford

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723-1/10/143 (West side)
20/02/76 Church of St Mary the Virgin


Church. 1902-4. Architect C Harrison Townsend; interior
decoration and fittings by W Reynolds Stephens in Art Nouveau
style. Rough cast with oolitic limestone dressings, roofs peg
tiled. Plan: nave and narrower chancel with apse, transeptal
projections on S and N sides are chapel and organ chamber with
vestry respectively. W end, small belfry tower with shingled
spirelet and 3 louvred openings on each face.
EXTERIOR: all windows are of lancet form unless otherwise
stated. S elevation, E-W, single window, pair of windows under
gable, buttress, 3 grouped windows, S chapel transept with
diagonal buttressed corners and broad 2-centred arched window
with heart shaped tracery. Nave - 2 pairs of windows,
intervening buttress. S porch flanked by buttresses, porch
projects in Essex style, timber-framed on roughcast base with
central ogee arched head and cusped side opening, barge board
with inscription, door boarded with ornamental hinges and
dedication inscription above, rainwater down pipes have leaf
decorated heads. N elevation, E-W, single window, pair of
windows, N vestry transept, buttressed and gabled with central
segment headed doorway with boarded door, organ chamber
integral build but set back with buttressed corner and hipped
roof and 2 rectangular paired windows with leaded panes. Nave,
4 pairs of windows, buttresses between, rainwater down pipes
as on S. E end elevation shows N vestry to have a pair of tall
narrow windows on E side with leaded panes. W elevation, nave
with angle buttresses, ground floor, 7 narrow rectangular
windows spanning full width, above, `rose' window with central
roundel and 8 radiating tracery hearts.
INTERIOR: nave roof, timber, 2-centre arched having broad
vault - 5 bays have ribs decorated with embossed rose trees in
aluminium leaf. S chancel window glass destroyed in 1939-45
war and partially replaced by memorial windows. Walls wood
panelled below with marquetry inlay. Pendant lights have
galvanised iron frames with enamel panels, flower bud metal
shades and glass bead finials. Font, white marble, central
bowl and pedestal, 2 attached side pillars surmounted by
bronze angels, font cover in bronze with mother-of-pearl
inlay. Pulpit cruciform in copper sheet, rivet heads featured
and mother-of-pearl inlay panels. Central IHS in repousse,
arms of cross supported by bronze triple stemmed trees, black
marble podium. Lectern in copper sheet, as pulpit, with
decorative rivets and mother-of-pearl inlay panels, desk top
supported by flowering branches, black marble plinth. Rood
screen of brass rose trees on variegated green and white
marble screen walls, crest of continuous frieze of dog-roses
in mother-of-pearl and enamel with supporting angels, central
upper cross. Chancel, 2-centred arch, apse has lower panels of
cippolino variegated marble with aluminium leaf above.
Embossed paired ribs carrying stylised vine leaves and red
painted grapes rise to a deep frieze of similar leaves and
grapes, small lancet window opening contains the only original
stained glass. Roof similar to nave with slender aluminium
ribs. Reredos, central metal embossed figure of Christ with
decorative flanking panels depicting the Entombment and the
Nativity. Altar rail, metal with brass crowns of thorns
containing triple roses on dark green marble pillars. Side
chapel has a wooden parclose screen, posts terminate in linked
poppy leaves with flowers above in top rail. Organ case in
iron with brass repousse cladding and central ormolu angel on
projecting beak of canopy which is supported by iron side
screens with bulb flowers.
HISTORICAL NOTE: the building was largely the gift of Evelyn
Heseltine who donated ยป5,000. The architect and artist could
be expected to reproduce faithfully the very modern Art
Nouveau styling. It is described as having `an orgy of the
English Arts and Crafts variety of the International
Art-Nouveau' (Pevsner, 1965). Townsend worked in E London,
some of his buildings being the entrance to Blackwall Tunnel,
The Horniman Museum, Forest Hill and the Whitechapel Art
Gallery - all known as landmarks in English Art Nouveau
The Church and lych gate (qv) form a group.
(The Buildings of England: Pevsner N: Essex: 1965-: 213).

Listing NGR: TQ5888889990

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