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Description: Church of All Saints
Date Listed: 28 June 1960
English Heritage Building ID: 131922
OS Grid Reference: SO8291703807
OS Grid Coordinates: 382917, 203807
Latitude/Longitude: 51.7327, -2.2487
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SO 8203-8303 KING'S STANLEY SELSLEY WEST
14/48 Church of All Saints
Parish church. 1862 by George Frederick Bodley for S.S. Marling.
Limestone ashlar; stone slate roof, lead to tower roof. High
Victorian, French gothic revival. Nave with north west tower,
north aisle and north organ loft apsed chancel. Moulded pointed-
arched west doorway in parapet-gabled west end, parapet linking
with tower to left. Two 2-light pointed windows with plate
tracery; circular window above with bold plate tracery and central
cusped light. Irregularly arranged north nave wall has large
gabled buttress with lancet recesses. Three 3-light nave windows
and one chancel 2-light, all with geometric tracery. Large C14
style mortuary recess and railed enclosure is monument to Sir
Samuel Stephens Marling, died 1883. Small triangular-headed panel
within round-arched and cusped recess depicts scenes from Life of
Christ. Plinth to nave becomes battered at east end; 5-sided
apse, each facet with lancet window and circular light above both
within round-arched recess. Lean-to north aisle roof, aisle having
two 2-light pointed windows. Two-storey vestry and organ loft to
east has parapet gables facing east and west, both disappearing
into nave roof to south. Gable-mounted chimney at west end with
triangular hood. High level pointed-arched organ loft doorway at
east end approached up straight flight of stone steps projecting
beyond north aisle wall with half-arch to underside spanning
entrance to vestry below. Circular window with dogtooth border
high in gable apex. Plate-traceried windows on north side of organ
loft and vestry. Saddleback tower of 3 stages has large moulded
and pointed-arched north doorway with two 2-light plate traceried
windows over having sandstone colonnettes with crocket capitals.
Tall 2-light belfry openings to east and west with central double
sandstone shaft, trefoil-headed openings and circular opening with
plate tracery over. Alternating colours to voussoir stone of
pointed arch link with banding in gables. North and south sides
have row of 3 trefoil and quatrefoil openings in square recesses.
Iron cross with weathervane at centre of tower roof ridge.
Interior is ashlar-faced. High nave with crown post roof. Two-bay
north arcade with simply moulded pointed arches carried on large
central marble pier with crocket capital. Pointed-arched tower
doorway; octagonal stair turret within tower has 2-light openings
within lower stage, each with central sandstone shaft; sandstone
treads to spiral stair brought through to external face of turret.
Tall lancet chancel arch with simple roll mouldings on intrados,
supported on paired marble column shafts with mid height stone
rings and crocket capitals. Boarded tunnel-vaulted chancel roof;
stepped tiled floor. Elaborate carved string course to apse with
gothic-lettered inscription below. Choir stalls with poppy-head
and fleur-de-lys finials. Round-fronted marble pulpit with variety
of coloured stone inlay. Octagonal stone font has circular base
with attached shafts. Row of matching Marling family memorial
tablets on south nave wall. Later timber-panelled north chapel has
delicately carved tracery. C20 draught lobby at west end has good
linenfold panelling. Stained glass by Morris and Company is an
important set: one of a group of their first ecclesiastical
commissions, all for Bodley-designed churches, the others being St
Michael's Church at Brighton and St Martin's Church at Scarborough.
The artists involved at Selsley were Burne-Jones, Rossetti, Madox-
Brown, Webb (who provided the general scheme and designed all the
animals) and Morris himself. Most original is the west window -
its subject being The Creation - with astonishingly avant-garde
designs, especially the almost abstract depiction of rain and the
sea. Marling is said to have directed that the church was to be a
copy of the church at Marling (now Marlengo) in the Tyrol. A
watercolour of that church is at Selsley. Also on display is a
copy of Bodley's original design with the tower towards the east
end. One of Bodley's most important early works, of great
significance in the development of High Victorian architecture.
Dominant position on promontory.
(For a detailed account of the stained glass see A.C. Sewter, The
Stained Glass of William Morris and His Circle, 1974-5; D. Verey,
article in Country Life, 20th May 1971; 'George Frederick Bodley'
in ed. J. Fawcett, Seven Victorian Architects, 1976; and
Gloucestershire: The Cotswolds, 1979)
Listing NGR: SO8291703814
This text is a legacy record and has not been updated since the building was originally listed. Details of the building may have changed in the intervening time. You should not rely on this listing as an accurate description of the building.
Source: English Heritage
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.