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Church of St Philip and St James, Whittington

Description: Church of St Philip and St James

Grade: II
Date Listed: 14 May 2014
Building ID: 1419333

OS Grid Reference: SO8763952888
OS Grid Coordinates: 387639, 252890
Latitude/Longitude: 52.1741, -2.1822

Locality: Whittington
Local Authority: Wychavon
County: Worcestershire
Postcode: WR5 2RH

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Listing Text


A church of 1842-44 with later additions and alterations, designed by Abraham Perkins.

Reason for Listing

The Church of St Philip and St James, Whittington, of 1842-44 is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Historic interest: the building represents very well the period of transformation between the C18 and early-C19 type of church, with box pews and gallery, and the type of church, advocated by the Cambridge Camden Society, with archaeologically-ordered chancel, complete with furnishings;
* Intactness: the building has lost little of its original fabric from the time that it was completed in 1844. The few alterations, such as the insertion of the organ to the gallery, the north-western vestry and the moving of the altar have all been achieved with minimal disturbance to the original fabric;
* Architectural interest: an essentially modest building, which was carefully designed by Abraham Perkins, a noted local architect who became surveyor to the fabric of Worcester Cathedral, to reflect the previous parish church on the site.


The church is believed to stand on an ancient site, and the present building appears to have been built on the foundations of an earlier church which also had a nave and chancel. A watercolour in the present church shows this to have had a timber-framed body, with south porch and clapboarded bellcote at the western end. The present church was designed by Abraham Perkins and built 1842-1844. It appears to contain parts of the flooring of the former church. The NW vestry was added by Yeates and Jones in 1890. An organ by Nicholson was also added to the gallery in the later-C19. In 1996-7 the eastern end was re-ordered and the altar was moved forward from the east wall of the chancel and some of the seating re-arranged.


A church of 1842-44 designed by Abraham Perkins, with later additions and alterations.

MATERIALS: rock-faced blue Lias stone, with ashlar dressings and a roof of fishscale tiles.

PLAN: a nave with chancel under a lower ridge and south porch. There is a tower at the west end and a vestry added in the re-entrant angle between the north flank of the tower and the west end of the nave. Internally, the church has box pews and a western gallery.

EXTERIOR: the tower projects at the western end and has angle buttresses with offsets. The upper body dies back via two deep offsets and is crowned by a small, octagonal spire. The west face has a door, above which is a tall lancet. The stage above has a circular clock face and there is a louvered lancet opening to the belfry. The north flank of the tower is abutted by the vestry, which has four lancet lights clustered under a continuous hoodmould on its west front. The south flank of the tower has a stair turret to its lower body. The nave has four bays with lancet lights divided by buttresses with offsets. The chancel has a single lancet to each flank and a triple lancet to its east end. Both nave and chancel have a plain parapet supported by a corbel table. The gabled south porch has a chamfered portal that rises into the gable.

INTERIOR: the nave has five box pews to each side with poppyheads to the bench ends and benches to the front. The gallery is supported by four columns and has a blind colonnade to its front. The organ is set into the first floor tower chamber, but the banked flooring of the gallery shows that this space was originally used for seating. The roof has tie and collar beams with arched braces and cusped angle braces connecting them. The chancel has encaustic tiling to the floor by Chamberlain and a prominent reredos with seven arches. The central three arches have richly-carved, gabled surrounds containing holy texts, including the Ten Commandments. At either side are paired, naïve paintings of saints on tin, which appear to be later additions. The Eastern window has stained glass by Wailes of 1850 and the flanking chancel windows and windows in the nave also appear to be from this workshop. The pulpit and altar are of artificial stone, and original.
Furnishings apparently brought from the former church include the font, with a circular and faceted bowl, a painted panel of the royal arms of George III, dated 1794, and wall monuments.

Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.