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Church of St Helen, Bilton-in-Ainsty with Bickerton

Description: Church of St Helen

Grade: I
Date Listed: 30 March 1966
English Heritage Building ID: 331703

OS Grid Reference: SE4760450382
OS Grid Coordinates: 447604, 450382
Latitude/Longitude: 53.9474, -1.2762

Location: Church Street, Bickerton, North Yorkshire YO26 7NN

Locality: Bilton-in-Ainsty with Bickerton
Local Authority: Harrogate Borough Council
County: North Yorkshire
Country: England
Postcode: YO26 7NN

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Listing Text


(east side)

4/2 Church of St Helen



Church. C12 with C15 and C17 fenestration, and restoration 1869-71 by Sir G G
Scott. Coursed limestone rubble and cobbles, tile roof. 4-bay nave with
north and south aisles, south porch and west bellcote; 3-bay chancel with
north vestry and south chapel. South porch, bay 2: 2 orders of colonettes
with waterleaf and decorated capitals and a double-chamfered round arch.
The inner doorway has a slightly chamfered round arch; the door is of wide
planks with long strap hinges and overlain by wooden fillets reinforced with
iron nails. The doorhead is carved with a scallop shell design and the date
1633. The initials R.S. (Robert Snawsell) are picked out in nails and an
incised pair of zigzag lines surmounted by 3 points and the number 44 below
the letter R is, traditionally, a depiction of King Charles I. The porch
roof contains the remains of 2 arch-braced roof trusses, the braces missing
but with bosses remaining; these are possibly from the chancel roof. Nave
south wall: stepped buttresses; square chamfered windows with iron grills
flank porch; window with paired lights far right. 2 similar straight-headed
windows to chancel south chapel wall; a chamfered doorway between. East
window of 3 cusped lights with hoodmould. North side fenestration as
south; a blocked north doorway to the nave is slightly chamfered. West
wall: tall (restored) C12 window and a circular window above. C19 bellcote
with 2 round arches and string courses. Large buttresses separate the west
nave wall from the north and south aisles. The north aisle has a row of
weathered carved stones, not in situ, including shields; the south aisle has
a re-set narrow Saxon/Norman-style window. Interior: 3-bay north and south
arcades have circular piers with simply moulded bases and capitals; the
south capitals are decorated with pellets and fleur-de-lis, the round arches
are double chamfered. The chancel arch has a heavy roll moulding overlaid
by giant zigzags on the west and east sides. Chancel: remains of a piscina
at east end; original north and south exterior walls are visible from the
north aisle and south chapel and the eaves corbels are carved with faces,
animals and birds. The north chancel wall is pierced by one chamfered
pointed arch, the south wall by 2. On the original south wall are the
remains of mass dials scratched onto the limestone blocks. Carved stone
remains include part of a Saxon cross against the west wall, an unweathered
wrinkled face on a north window sill; 3 fragments of C10 Anglo-Danish
crosses decorated with figures and interlace in the south chapel, and a fine
monument of c1400 in the north chancel aisle depicting a woman with feet on
a dog and hands holding a bird and wearing
her hair in a plait held in place by a decorated band. The font is a large
plain bowl on an octagonal stem; the altar table is C16-C17, the legs
decorated in the form of Ionic columns. The altar rail was replaced c1965.
The eagle lectern has a C17 body and 1869 feet, wings and head. The Saxon
remains were discovered in the walling during the 1869 restoration; the west
gallery was removed at that time. The church probably had a bell tower in
the C17. W V Crapp, Some historical notes on the parish and parish church
of St Helens, Bilton-in-Ainsty with Bickerton, 1973. N Pevsner, Buildings
of England: Yorkshire West Riding, p101.

Listing NGR: SE4760550384

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.