Tuesday, 6 November 2012

All Saints & St Peter, Aldwincle

The broach spire of St Peter's, Aldwincle

The small village of Aldwincle in North Northamptonshire, by some quirk of history, has two parishes and therefore two parish churches. One, St Peters, stands in the centre of the village and is noted for its broach spire, one of the "most perfect" examples. St Peters exhibits a range of gothic features from the 12th to the 15th century, and is very much the typical parish church. it is surrounded by a graveyard, overlooking cottages, with an interior dominated by its Victorian restoration. Think plush carpets and cross-stitch hassocks.

The nave and chancel

Mediaeval Stained Glass and a Green Man

The early C20th rood screen

At the East end of the village, as one heads to the broad valley of the Nene, is the second church, All Saints. The first features one notices is the great perpendicular tower, a stark contrast to St Peter's spire. The church was declared redundant in the 1970s, and since then has been preserved by the Churches Conservation Trust, seemingly in a state of partial decay. Fragments of wall paintings and old plasterwork against areas of exposed stone. The roof, dated to the 17th century, is raw and simple. An extravagant perpendicular chantry chapel sits to the South-East, facing the Manor House. To the North is the birthplace of the village's most famous former resident; the post John Dryden who's father was the rector of All Saints.

All Saints Church from the South

The Nave, showing remains of wall painting and the 17th century roof timbers

The Perpendicular South Chapel


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