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Church of St Mary

A Grade I Listed Building in Banbury, Oxfordshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 52.0179 / 52°1'4"N

Longitude: -1.3746 / 1°22'28"W

OS Eastings: 443011

OS Northings: 235680

OS Grid: SP430356

Mapcode National: GBR 7TC.F94

Mapcode Global: VHCWF.4J4Y

Plus Code: 9C4W2J9G+54

Entry Name: Church of St Mary

Listing Date: 8 December 1955

Grade: I

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1284130

English Heritage Legacy ID: 244168

Location: Bloxham, Cherwell, Oxfordshire, OX15

County: Oxfordshire

District: Cherwell

Civil Parish: Bloxham

Built-Up Area: Bloxham

Traditional County: Oxfordshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Oxfordshire

Church of England Parish: Bloxham

Church of England Diocese: Oxford

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Description

SP4235
9/65

BLOXHAM
CHURCH STREET (east side)
Church of St. Mary

08/12/55

GV
I
Parish Church. C12 fragments. C13. Chancel, nave, north and south aisles, and nave arcades. C14: North and south aisles widened; shallow north transept constructed; north and south porches; west tower and spire. C15: Milcombe Chapel; clerestory of the nave. Roofs of north and south aisles reconstructed 1686. Spire repaired several times in C18. 1864 restoration by G.E. Street: 1956: Major repairs.

Regular coursed ironstone rubble. Lead roofs. Nave, north and south aisles, south chapel, chancel, north and south vestries, north and south porches, west tower.

Chancel: four-light Gothic revival east window, other windows two-light with intersecting Y- or geometrical tracery. North vestry 1866; south vestry C20. North aisle: four-light west window has unusual tracery with carved figures; three-light window west of porch has a form of reticulated tracery; east of porch two three-light windows have reticulated and geometrical tracery; five-light Perpendicular east window. North porch and doorway early C14 with wave mouldings. South aisle: four-light geometrical west window with a six-sided star to head; three-light geometrical window to left of porch; C14 porch is vaulted with room over and third storey added in C15. Milcombe Chapel has four- ,five- and seven-light rectilinear windows externally divided by buttresses with pinnacles; straight parapet has gargoyles; mutilated niches flank the east windows of south aisle and chapel.

West tower: west doorway has three orders of wave moulding, hollows filled with ballflower, leaves and birds and large carved heads in place of capitals. Hood has seated figures. Tower of five stages has angle buttresses with niches, string courses to all stages and louvred lights to bell stage. At fifth stage the tower forms an octagon under the spire; broaches are marked by corner pinnacles. Octagon has cornice of blind tracery; spire has canopied lucarnes.

Interior: chancel: C12 responds of chancel arch re-used in C14 rebuilding; re-set C12 doorway in north wall has tympanum with fish scale pattern; re-used Romanesque carvings to rere-arches of south windows; four bay nave arcades: double chamfered arches; north piers are round with moulded capitals; south piers of quatrefoil section, one has a stiff leaf capital. North transept entered through two arches on diamond shaped piers. Capital has band of heads. Between the south aisle and the Milcombe Chapel are two delicately moulded four-centred arches and a slender pier. North aisle roof and most of south aisle roof C14; chancel and nave roofs renewed 1866; font C15 with Jacobean cover; rood screen C15; reredos and choir stalls 1866 by Street.

Wall paintings: Fragments of C15 over north doorway; in the Milcombe Chapel a series of narrative scenes probably C16. Fragments of C14 glass in central window of north aisle. Chancel east window by Morris and Co. 1869; chancel south window by Charles Kempe; Chancel low south window by Morris and Co, inserted 1920.

Monuments: To Sir John Thornycroft (d.1725) in Milcombe Chapel, and other monuments to this family including Elizabeth, Lady Thornycroft (1704), John Thornycroft (1687) and his wife Dorothy (d,1717/18). There are memorials to C19 members of the Holloway family and to the vicars: Robert Pargiter, John Davis, Harry Davis, George Bell, James Hodgson.

The Church of St. Mary is noted as one of the finest in the country. It was indirectly under royal patronage until 1541 when the living passed to Eton College. The C14 and C15 tracery and lively sculpture was carried out by a school of C14 masons who worked on other churches locally. The Milcombe chapel may have been built by the mason Richard Winchcombe who was responsible for Adderbury chancel 1418.

Listing NGR: SP4300835683

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