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Parish Church of St Mary the Virgin (Church of England), Westmill

Description: Parish Church of St Mary the Virgin (Church of England)

Grade: II*
Date Listed: 22 February 1967
English Heritage Building ID: 161366

OS Grid Reference: TL3694427171
OS Grid Coordinates: 536944, 227171
Latitude/Longitude: 51.9262, -0.0098

Location: Westmill, Hertfordshire SG9 9LJ

Locality: Westmill
Local Authority: East Hertfordshire District Council
County: Hertfordshire
Country: England
Postcode: SG9 9LJ

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Listing Text

Westmill village
(north side)

8/15 Parish Church of St Mary
the Virgin (C of E)


Parish church. Cll (A-S) nave, C12 N aisle, C13 chancel, C15 W
tower and nave roof, S porch rebuilt and church restored 1876
with new lean-to vestry at NE. Flint rubble with coursed flint
facing and limestone dressings. Barnack stone long-and-short
work in situ at SE corner of nave, and reused in diagonal
butresses to N aisle. Knapped flint and limestone chequered
plinth to tower. Steep old red tile roofs. Small leaded
Hertfordshire spike and vane on pyramidial slated base behind
crenelated parapet of tower. Essentially a 2-cell pre-conquest
church with unusually wide (and therefore important) nave 21 ft x
41.5 ft and square-ended chancel 15 ft x 25 ft with C13
rebuilding of chancel, and later accretious. Adding N aisle
c1190 involved cutting 2 pointed unmoulded arches through A-S N
wall having splayed edges, dripmoulds on both sides and moulded
abaci on the intrados of each. Upper door to rood loft stair
at E end of N wall. Lancet windows in sides of chancel renewed
but C13 blocked square headed window with external rebate over S
door of chancel. Chancel arch c1330 2-centred with 2 moulded
orders, dripmould on both sides and responds of 3 large engaged
shafts with fillets between. Brick jambs, head and external
label with stops to W window of N aisle c1530. Tall square tower
of 3 stages with diagonal buttresses and very tall 2-centred
tower arch to nave of 3 chamfered orders without capitals.
Elaborate W doorway and moulded jambs with a canopied niche to
each splay and spandrels carved with censing angels. 3-light W
window and 4 large 2-light belfry openings with traceried heads.
Gargoyles in middle of each face below parapet and deep moulded
string around base. C15 scissor-braced collar-purlin nave roof
with 3 octagonal crown-posts with moulded base and cap and 4-way
bracing, and wall responds to short end bays. C13 memorial slab
to Nicol de Leuknore on wall in base of tower with Lombardic edge
inscription. Octagonal late C15 clunch font with fleurons in
quatrefoils on panelled sides. C15 benches with buttressed ends.
Polychrome tile reredos concealed by alter said to be the last
designed by Sir Ninian Comper. 2 polychrome octagonal riddel
posts supporting gilded angels: 2 more now under tower. Late C17
oak communion rails with twisted balusters. Vigourously carved
eagle lectern, organ front and panelled pulpit 1931 decorated by
Peter Larkworthy. (RCHM (1911) 236-7: VCH (1912) 401-2; Pevsner
(1977) 401: Ormerod (n.d.) Notes for Visitors).

Listing NGR: TL3694427171

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.