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Church of St John the Baptist

A Grade I Listed Building in Bishop's Tawton, Devon

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Latitude: 51.0523 / 51°3'8"N

Longitude: -4.0481 / 4°2'53"W

OS Eastings: 256546

OS Northings: 130099

OS Grid: SS565300

Mapcode National: GBR KR.FVR6

Mapcode Global: FRA 26DB.QR5

Plus Code: 9C3Q3X22+WQ

Entry Name: Church of St John the Baptist

Listing Date: 25 February 1965

Grade: I

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1366220

English Heritage Legacy ID: 98500

Location: Bishop's Tawton, North Devon, Devon, EX32

County: Devon

District: North Devon

Civil Parish: Bishop's Tawton

Built-Up Area: Bishop's Tawton

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Bishops Tawton

Church of England Diocese: Exeter

Tagged with: Church building

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Bishops Tawton


SS 53 SE
7/22 Church of St John the artist

Parish Church. C14 tower and probably nave, the latter remodelled in C15 when
north aisle was added. North aisle restored 1849, chancel rebuilt 1864 and further
general restoration of 1878, all by R D Gould. Nave with south porch, chancel,
north aisle and north transeptal tower with vestry adjoining. Stone rubble,
roughly coursed to north aisle. Squared rubble to chancel. Ashlar dressings.
Slate roofs, coped gable ends with apex cross at east end. C19 ball flower
ornamentation to the chancel coving. Transeptal tower of 2 stages with parapet;
with crocketted octagonal recessed stone spire unique in Devon with weathervane.
Buttresses at north-east and north-west corners with offsets. 2-light bell
openings on each face with trefoil cusped heads. Hoodmould to west side. Single
narrow lancet below bell-opening on east face. North side has pointed arched
opening of 2 trefoil-headed lights above pointed arched doorway with double
chamfered surround. North aisle projects forward slightly from the tower with
diagonal buttress at its north-west corner. 3 buttresses with offsets to parapet
sill height divide 3 Perpendicular style C19 windows. 3 lights each. 2 grotesque
gargoyles over rainwater heads. North aisle. Pointed arched west window of 3
lights with hoodmould. 2 diagonal buttresses to west end of nave which has 4 light
nave window with cinquefoil traceried head and corbelled hoodmould above west door
with Pevsner 'B' type moulded surround, hoodmould and framed and ledged plank door.
Tall blocked opening with pointed brick arch towards west end of nave to south side
probably originally external entrance to west gallery (now removed). Pointed
arched window of 3 lights with hoodmould to left of slated south porch into C19
chamfered arch and hoodmould with floriated corbels. Framed and ledged inner south
porch doorway. Short buttress to each side of porch. Single C19 3-light pointed
arched nave window to right with hoodmould. Buttress with offsets at right end and
small blocked opening near to ground level to its immediate left. Two buttresses
with offsets to chancel which has two 2-light windows and 3-light east window with
pointed arches and hoodmoulds with human head corbels. Vestry has low parapet
pierced with trefoils along east side. 4-centred arched 2-light window in east
side with floriated corbels to the hoodmould. East doorway with nowy-arched head
and probably reset C13 lancet to its right.
North arcade of 3 1/2 bays. Perpendicular except easternmost pier replaced in C19.
Ceiled waggon roof to nave with carved bosses at the intersections of the ribs and
purlins and moulded timber wall plate. Trabeated roof to north aisle of 12 panels
with carved bosses along the central spire and half-bosses to the ends of each
cross member. C19 waggon style roof to chancel. Elaborately patterned tiled C19
reredos with "And if Christ be not risen then is our preaching vain" along the
headrail and "And your faith is also vain" to the bottom rail. C19 tiles to altar
step. Priests door with pointed arched hoodmould and foliated corbels. C19
pointed chancel arch with human head corbels. North transeptal arch has blind
tracery to the heavy faceted corbels. C19 pulpit. 5 facets to the drum with short
colonnettes between the twin trefoil-headed arches. Stone base also has engaged
colonettes with foliated capitals. C19 nave seating with poppy head bench ends to
5 front pews on south side. C18 Font has lead-lined octagonal bowl on squat round
stem and lobed plinth, wrought iron font crane to cone cover swept up to finial top
with crocketed ribs. Blind traceried panels to the 8 facets with short corner
finials. Mid C16 short timber screen of 3 sections to east end of north aisle,
each bay of 4 lights with 2 large cinquefoil headed panels to the base, crenellated
top rail and crested cornice. Foliated design to stone top rail to north aisle
Monuments. Chancel south side with tablet to Anne, wife of Thos Hutton, eldest
daughter of Charles Chichester d.1834 above charming C17 round arched wall
monument. Shield above plaque to infant daughter of Charles Dart and Rose his wife
d. 1652, epitaph with baby in swaddling clothes on console shield with scrolling
surround. Elaborate wall monument to Frances Chichester died 1698. Shield with 2
angels flanked by classical urns above nowy arch with fluted cornice supported on
Corinthian colonettes with caryatids outside with Ionic capitals. Richly carved
surround with ferns, cherubs heads etc. Cherubs heads to the consoles flanking
central Chichester achievement and skeletons head. Wall monument to Lady Ursula
Chichester d.1635. Swan-necked pediment with shield above semi-circular headed
surround with shields to the spandrels to praying female figure flanked by Ionic
colonettes and plaque to base. 3 marble wall tablets at each end of nave south
side flanking plaque with oval medallion to John Pyke and family late C18/early
C19. North wall of north aisle has 2 late C19 wall monuments by Physick of London,
flanking wall monument depicting weeping female clasping urn on pedestal, all to
members of the Law family. Wall monument at east end of north aisle to John Mulys
of Halmestone d.1633. North wall of chancel has marble wall tablet to John Yeoman
rector, d.1826 and large wall monument to John Chichester d.1669. Central
achievement with shields to each side of broken, semi-circular arched pediment,
supporting reclining putti. Corinthian colonettes flank central plaque with 3
heads in the cornice with scrolling wings and skull to the base. Perp. table tomb
recess below with stone table top to John Chichester and plaque in wall behind to
widow of John Chichester of Hall Esq. Charity board to base of tower. Old ledged
door to vestry. All windows have C19 stained glass, principally to Chichester and
Law families.

Listing NGR: SS5654730112

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