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© Mr Paul Martin Clarke

IoE Number: 275844
Photographer: Mr Paul Martin Clarke
Date Photographed: 15 August 2004
Date listed: 07 May 1954
Date of last amendment: 07 May 1954
Grade I

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TL 7174MILDENHALLTHE CHURCHYARD12/35 Church of St. Mary7.5.54-1

TL 7174 MILDENHALL THE CHURCHYARD 12/35 Church of St. Mary 7.5.54 - 1 Church, mediaeval. Nave, chancel, west tower, north and south aisles, north and south porches, north vestry. Flint rubble with limestone dressings; some sections built entirely of freestone. Low-pitched leaded roofs with parapets and parapet gables, except for chancel roof (slated). Vestry early C13, with rib-vaulted ceiling, lancets in north and triple lancet in west wall; further good features in south and east walls. Fine chancel arch, heavily moulded with keeled shafts, tooth ornament and stiff-leaf capitals. The chancel was extended early C14, perhaps for Richard de Wichford (d.1344) - see his tomb slab in floor. 3-light side windows and fine 7-light east window, the outer lights continuing up as a frieze of quatrefoils. Double piscina with moulded ogee-arched head and shafts with foliate capitals. Triple sedilia and trefoil- headed aumbry. The east chancel corner buttresses are linked at their heads to form canopied image niches. Nave, aisles, porches and tower were all rebuilt early/mid C15. 5-bay nave arcade with large clerestory windows, fine roof of arch-braced tie-beams and queen posts, all enriched and infilled with tracery. Intermediate trusses have hammerbeams in the form of angels, which also embellish cornices and tie-beams. The north aisle roof is exceptionally fine: massive angel hammerbeams with richly figure-carved spandrels, cornices and wall posts. The south aisle roof is similar but has traceried spandrels. North aisle walling has buttresses with canopied niches, flushwork, and panelled and traceried parapets with pinnacles. Large north porch with fan-vaulted ceiling and Lady Chapel above, which has 2 large openings looking down into aisle. Traceried north door, the doorway is surrounded by fine panelled tracery. External features similar to north aisle. Smaller 1-storey south porch. Tower about 40 metres high; the set-back buttresses have pinnacles at alternate stages. Large west window above west doorway and flanking niches. A minstrel's gallery within the tower is supported on a fine fan-vaulted ceiling, with an inner arch towards the nave and traceried stone balustrading. Early C15 panelled octagonal Purbeck marble font. The mediaeval rood-screen had 2 lofts; everything except the stairs and 3 doorways has gone; the present ornate screen was added 1903. Several windows in chancel and vestry have good fragments of C13 and C14 glass. A cenotaph to Sir Henry Barton, Lord Mayor of London 1416 and 1428, stands in the south aisle. In the south aisle also is the alabaster tomb chest of Sir Henry North (d.1620) with effigies of him and his family; nearby are wall tablets to Roger North, d.1651 and Thomasina North, d.1661. Beside the chancel arch is a wall tablet to the wife of Sir Henry North (d.1671) with morbid epitaph by the bereaved husband. In the chancel are wall tablets to Sir Henry (d.1617) and Edward Warner, and to Mary Warner (d.1601). A number of floor slabs throughout the church, the earlier examples have indents for brasses; see article by Peter Heseltine, Trans. Monumental Brass Society. A floor slab in the vestry to William Coe (diarist), d.1729. Two good C18 wall tablets; in south aisle to Henry Bunbury (d.1722) and in chancel to Revd. John Hunt (d.1736). In the tower is a large panel with Arms of George II, dated 1758. For detailed description, see Suffolk Churches, H. Munroe Cantley, and good official Guide (1979).

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