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Parish Church of St Mary

A Grade I Listed Building in Kentisbeare, Devon

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Latitude: 50.865 / 50°51'53"N

Longitude: -3.3257 / 3°19'32"W

OS Eastings: 306800

OS Northings: 108109

OS Grid: ST068081

Mapcode National: GBR LQ.TZ5F

Mapcode Global: FRA 36XT.B63

Entry Name: Parish Church of St Mary

Listing Date: 5 April 1966

Grade: I

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1106503

English Heritage Legacy ID: 95760

Location: Kentisbeare, Mid Devon, Devon, EX15

County: Devon

District: Mid Devon

Civil Parish: Kentisbeare

Built-Up Area: Kentisbeare

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Kentisbeare St Mary

Church of England Diocese: Exeter

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Listing Text

8/105 Parish Church of St Mary
Parish church. Tower and chancel late C14 or early C15; the nave possibly
incorporates earlier work; south aisle added by John Whityng (died 1529); C19
Materials: a great variety of different stone: Beer stone and a rare cinnamon
coloured red sandstone quarried near Cullompton are used to form a chequer pattern
on the north side of the tower; otherwise mostly coursed or random rubble sandstone
with some volcanic trap and Beer stone; C19 work in limestone, the vestry of flint.
Dry slate roofs.
Plan: West tower, nave, west porch, chancel, south aisle to both nave and chancel;
vestry added at west end of south aisle.
Exterior: tall battlemented tower of 2 stages with plinth; the north side is the
show front with battlemented polygonal stair turret and set-back buttresses
decorated in a chequer pattern. 2-light belfry openings, Perpendicular 3-light
window and contemporary west doorway. North side: the nave wall is the only part
of the church that lacks a plinth, and the masonry is also laid differently. It is
possibly earlier. 2 late C15 or early C16 3-light Perpendicular windows to nave.
C15 porch with ceiled wagon roof, with canopied niches above both inner and outer
doorways, that to the former the more elaborate of the two. Chancel with smaller
Perpendicular windows then nave, much renewed. South side with a good set of early
C16 windows, that to the south aisle east, almost intact, the others restored.
Stair turret to rood loft and aisle rof. Pretty late C19 vestry with its roof
aligned north-south.
Interior: no chancel arch; 5 bay arcade. Crisp, high-quality foliated capitals -
those to the west piers are of coarse workmanship and-wavy mouldings to piers. The
pier flanking the Whityng chapel (south of the chancel) is adorned with his coat of
arms and the symbols of his trade. Tower arch with panelled intrados. Ceiled wagon
roof throughout, all medieval, except above the Whytyng chapel which is C19. South
aisle embellished with shield-bearing angles at wall plate level.
Screen: 10-bay rood screen is one of the finest in the country, with flamboyant
elements, and a great variety of design and detailing (each bay is different).
Bligh Bond (see references below) considered it to be the prototype of the 'Exe-
Valley' class of screens. It displays the arms of John Whityng. Parclose, of 4
bays, to a different design, and less well preserved.
Font: hexagonal, stone, and probably C15.
Piscina: Whityng chapel, early C16. C16 panelling to east wall of Whytyng chapel,
believed to have been brought here from Bradfield House (q.v.) C17 bellringing
chamber floor. Fine gallery (west end) dated 1632, with cornice and rail presumably
added in the late C18 or early C19 when the gallery was re-seated. Pulpit,
apparently once dated 1736, and signed by Isaac Bonifant (reference Pevsner, see
below). C18 charity boards. C19 nave benches and chancel stalls. Reredos of
Monuments: the most noteworthy are (in chronological order):
(1) Tomb chest of John Whityng in the Whityng chapel. Beer stone with polyplant
slab. Brasses largely missing but illustrated in Hamilton Rogers, Sepulchral
Effigies of Devonshire
(2) Tomb chest of Lady Buildford, pl. died 1558, also in the Whityng chapel. The
memorial inscription brass set into the C16 panelling along the east wall.
(3) 2 wall monuments that commemorate charities (a) of William Evelyn, died 1671,
north wall of nave and (b) Edmund Crosse (not dated, but C17), both stone with
(4) Wall monument to Rev. J.W. Scott, died 1820, chancel south wall. A good
cosmopolitan piece (not signed) commemorating Sir Walter Scott's nephew; Scott
penned the inscription which is placed on a scroll hanging over an obliquely-set
sarcophagns, the whole revealed by a life-sized naked child. All marble.
Glass: medieval fragments in south aisle, east window. East window, and possibly
the others in the chancel, by Clayton and Bell, 1882.
Reference: N. Pevsner, SD., pp.187-8; J, Stabb, Some old Devon Churches, I (1908),
pp. 71-2, plate 62; F.B. Bligh Bond and Dom Bede Camm, Rood screens and Roof lofts,
(1909), II, 325, plates 82A, 97B; E.S. Chalk, Kentisbeare and Blackborough
(Devonshire Association Parochial Histories, no. 3).

Listing NGR: ST0679808108

This text is from the original listing, and may not necessarily reflect the current setting of the building.

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