Astoft

Uffington,  Oxfordshire  -  St Mary's Church
13th century

Click on photos to enlarge.
Notes in italics from Berkshire by Nikolaus Pevsner (1966) Yale University Press, New Haven and London.



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A church of c.1250 with a crossing tower. Its top storey turns octagonal, and a further storey was added after 1740. Previously there had been a spire which was lost in a storm.
The windows of the church are mostly lancet pairs, and also triplets. Below these groups blank circles or roundels, for consecration crosses. ... The three lancet windows in the W wall of the nave have very odd tops, and these seem to belong to a restoration of 1677-9. ...
At west end of chancel a three-light Dec window with reticulated tracery.


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The S porch is on a cathedral scale. Outer and inner doorways have mature stiff-leaf capitals. On the buttresses niches with continuous mouldings. The statues in the niches of Alfred the Great and St George date from 1975. In the buttress gablets small figures. In the top gable also a figure composition. Large, unfinished panelled pinnacles left and right. A second doorway with shallow porch leads from the E into the S transept. It is tunnel-vaulted. .. The third doorway is the priest's doorway (in S wall of chancel), and that also has the uncommon feature of a gable.


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Yet another curious fact is the very large sexfoiled window above the N doorway of the nave. Why was this made? It is tempting to attribute to (the restoration of 1677-9) the weirdest of all features of Uffington, the E chapels of the transept, two N, one S. They are of three lights with steep triangles, not arches, and the mullions simply running into them ... certainly not like the C13.


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Internally all is mid C13. North transept east arcade. South transept. 
Effigy of John Saunders, died 1638. Semi-reclining effigy, stiffly on his side. Coffered arch. Strapwork on the back wall.
North window in nave. The top was sliced off by a later new roof.


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Much shafting in the chancel. 
Groups of triple wall shafts indicate the intention to vault. Springers indeed survive. The capitals of the shafts are polygonal, as though they were Perp. But they are not; for they recur in the impeccable transept E arcades
(not shown). ..
Original sedilia and piscina.

It is all round a highly idiosyncratic style we find at Uffington, but surely not idiosyncratic enough for the transept E window. 
 

 

Uffington School, a small oblong building of 1617 with mullioned windows. The building is of chalk, as is nearly the whole of Uffington. Dscn0649-crpu-h405.jpg (58258 bytes)
 

Map

 

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