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Church of St Martin

A Grade I Listed Building in St Martin's, Shropshire

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Latitude: 52.9199 / 52°55'11"N

Longitude: -3.009 / 3°0'32"W

OS Eastings: 332254

OS Northings: 336305

OS Grid: SJ322363

Mapcode National: GBR 75.N1L1

Mapcode Global: WH89J.RVBX

Plus Code: 9C4RWX9R+X9

Entry Name: Church of St Martin

Listing Date: 8 October 1959

Grade: I

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1367347

English Heritage Legacy ID: 255719

Location: St. Martin's, Shropshire, SY11

County: Shropshire

Civil Parish: St. Martin's

Built-Up Area: St Martin's

Traditional County: Shropshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Shropshire

Church of England Parish: St Martin's St Martin

Church of England Diocese: Lichfield

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SJ 33 NW

CHURCH LANE (north side)
Church of St Martin


Parish church. C13, late C14/early C15 north aisle; west tower of c.1632; vestry dated 1810. Restoration of 1841 and east wall of chancel rebuilt 1862. Uncoursed conglomerate and sandstone rubble with sandstone ashlar dressings and tower; rock-faced snecked sandstone ashlar to east wall of chancel; slate roofs. Nave and chancel in one; west tower; north aisle; south porch and north-east vestry.

Tower: in three stages with multi-stepped diagonal buttresses, moulded cornice and C19 embattled parapet. Integral stair turret at north-west angle lit by narrow rectangular slits. Cornice has carved heads on north, east and west and gargoyle surviving to south east corner. West face has three-light Perpendicular window with panel tracery, possibly reused from an earlier tower, to first stage. Four-centred doorway below has hoodmould and label stops of 1841; C17 nail-studded heavy boarded door with elaborately decorated strap hinges. Inscription above in moulded surround: "Templum quod conspicis Deo Sacrum/Sumplu Suo Instauratum atque Ornatum / Haeredum Curae commendat / ARTURUS VICE COMES DUNGANNON/A.S. MDCCCXLI." Clock to second stage also dated 1841. Windows to belfry have simple Y-tracery and plain hoodmoulds; narrow round-headed windows to second stage on north and south.

Nave and chancel: have two large, probably C18, ramped buttresses on south side. Square-headed window with two cusped lights to far left probably contemporary with tower; square-headed C15 window immediately to east of left buttress has three cusped lights and window to right with Y-tracery is probably of c.1632. Late C13 pointed doorway immediately to left of right buttress has been infilled to bottom half and has two C17 mullions inserted to top forming three-light window; late C19 gabled half-dormer immediately to left has small two-light Decorated style window with hoodmould. Early C19 porch immediately to right if west window has red brick side walls (Flemish stretcher bond) and stone gable with round-headed arch; C14 south doorway behind has double-chamfered four-centred arch. Two late C15/early C16 square-headed windows to chancel, one of three cusped lights to left and of four cusped lights to right. East wall entirely rebuilt in 1862 has three-light window with geometrical tracery. Hip-roofed vestry in angle with north aisle has cambered doorway on east side with inscription above in moulded surround: 'This Vestry was erected / and the Church Repewed / A.D. 1810 / WILLIAM CLEAVER D.D. Bishop of St. Asaph / JOHN WILLIAM BOURKE M.A. Vicar.' Mid C19 two-light window with quatrefoil above to left.

North aisle; built in two stages, earliest part to east of straight joint (immediately to left of third window from east) with original eaves line and angle quoins visible. Square-headed window to east of three cusped lights with plain spandrels probably C17 but renewed C19; C15 square-headed window to left of centre with single cusped light; window of four lights to right of centre and one of two lights to right both similar in style and date to east window. Low infilled doorway with depressed arch to far right. West wall rebuilt in 1869 has two-light Decorated-style window.

INTERIOR: pointed double-chamfered tower arch. Arcade of five bays has four-centred arches on short octagonal piers with moulded capitals and plinths (latter now mostly below floor level): two eastern bays (now infilled) are slightly earlier than remainder and have slightly shorter piers. Late C15 arch-braced collar beam roof in nine bays to nave and chancel with double purlins, cusped wind braces and cusped struts from collars to principal rafters; two eastern bays have ceilure with elaborately carved cornice and three bands of foliage decoration, the one at the apex also being carved with dragons; carved bosses probably c.1841. Similar but more irregular collar-beam roof in eight bays to north aisle with corbels for original roof above eastern arches of arcade. Eaves line of pre-late C15 roof also visible in nave and chancel.

Chancel has C19 choir stalls incorporating decorative Jacobean panelling, three on each side. C17 communion rails originally enclosing north, south and west sides of altar now re-sited but retaining turned balusters and double gates to centre. Reredos slightly cut down c.1980 incorporates Jacobean panelling and, at time of resurvey (April 1986), arts of early C19 box pews, formerly in nave and north aisle. Many of these had brass plates with the name of the family or house to which they belonged inscribed but have been entirely replaced by Victorian pews from another church.

Three-decker pulpit with sounding board probably erected c.1810 but incorporating Jacobean woodwork, formerly sited against the south wall has also been dismantled and is currently stored at the west end of the north aisle pending reconstruction. Two chairs in sanctuary are probably Jacobean and two others have late-medieval carved bench ends as their backs. Octagonal C19 Perpendicular-style font with pedestal. Two oak chests at west end, one strongly bound with iron bands.

Stained glass by David Evans of Shrewsbury: St Peter and St Paul (nave, third window from west) and St James and St John (north aisle, west window in north wall); other glass with religious monograms and coats-of-arms of local families in similar style throughout church; late C19 stained glass in east window.

Monuments: C18 hatchment of Viscount Dungannon immediately to east of south door and C18 or C19 benefactors' board immediately to east of infilled doorway in north aisle. C18 and C19 wall tablets and memorials, most notable being Birch/Price memorial, erected 1823 (nave, south side) and that to Richard Phillips, died 1821 (now in eastern bay of arcade) by C.M. Seddon of Liverpool; kneeling woman holding cross in front of urn. Grave slab commemorating Esther Stoakes (died 1747) re-erected in infilled doorway in south wall of nave and brass plates fixed to pillars of arcade in memory of Margaret Cupper (died 1695), Edward Phillips (died 1752) and Richard Barkley (died 1779).

Listing NGR: SJ3225536305

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