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© Mr A. C. A Seinet

IoE Number: 281173
Photographer: Mr A. C. A Seinet
Date Photographed: 21 August 2002
Date listed: 15 November 1954
Date of last amendment: 15 November 1954
Grade I

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TL 96 SW HESSETTTHE STREET (EAST SIDE)4/70Church of St Ethelbert15.11.54

TL 96 SW HESSETT THE STREET (EAST SIDE) 4/70 Church of St Ethelbert 15.11.54 GV I Parish church. Mainly C15 but with some mid C14 work especially in chancel. Nave, chancel, north and south aisles, north chapel (now organ chamber), north sacristy, south porch, west tower. Flint rubble, all but tower and porch plastered. Freestone dressings: some fine late C15 carved work. The nave, both aisles and porch have openwork parapets and parapet gables with quatrefoils framing shields and other emblems, alternating with open arches in each merlon. At intervals are crocketed pinnacles, and at the corners of the porch is a pair of angel figures. Flat leaded roofs (the chancel roof is slated with a parapet). 3-stage C15 tower with possible C14 core: fine freestone parapets with corner pinnacles and angel figures, and much sunk tracery. The freize has sunk panels bearing shields and other emblems: the initials I.B. for John Bacon are included, possibly the John who lived at the adjacent house (Five Bells Cottage, Item 4/71) and died in 1513. Beneath the 2-light belfry windows are pairs of panels bearing similar shields. Fine complete set of C15 3-light windows in aisles and clerestory. The south side of the porch is entirely faced in panelled freestone: the entrance archway has a frame with St George and the Dragon in the spandrels and above are three canopied and vaulted image-niches. The north aisle doorway is of C14: other C14 features are confined to the chancel: fine dagger-traceried east window with image niche above. A 2-light south window and very restored doorway (the 2nd window is a C19 copy). The late C14 chantry chapel has a square-headed east window, and two disused grotesque gargoyles; the north aisle was remodelled and the chantry chapel raised to provide a sacristy in late C15. Beneath the parapet is a freize requesting Prayer for John Hoo and his wife (John died 1491). Interior: The church has a good interior of C15 character. 4-bay nave arcade with deeply scotia moulded piers and slender shafts. Cambered and archbraced tiebeam roof: main members moulded, and a few badly- damaged angels beneath wall-posts. Aisle roofs similar, with deep cornice: the chapel (added by John Hoo c.1490) has a similar roof with the refinement of embattling and moulded rafters. Late C14 chancel arch, with late C15 screen complete up to roodbeam, and with original stencilled colouring at lower level: loft stairs with two doorways. C14 piscina in the chancel has an ogee hoodmould with crocketing, but almost reconstructed in C19. Mid C14 doorway into sacristy: original plank door with ironwork. An original (late C15) ladder stair leads to the room above. Amid C14 cusped and ogee-headed piscina in the south aisle. Octagonal font with sunk traceried panels: believed made at Norwich c.1451 and presented by the Hoo family in 1500. Two sets of 9 square-ended benches in nave and others in south aisle: one of the latter is linked with a poppyhead end bearing a coat of arms dated to approximately 1525. Fine and undisturbed late C14 choirstall fronts with poppyhead ends and traceried fronts with carved spandrels. The choirstalls are altered but there are 4 good ends. In the north chapel is an C18 wall monument to Thomas Aldridge Armiger and another with rich carved drapery and crown to Lionel Bacon (d.1651). Fine C15 wall paintings: St Barbara in the south aisle: The Seven Deadly Sins, above Christ of the Trades in the north aisle; and St Christopher over the north doorway. Some C15 glass at the head of several windows, sufficient in some cases for the subject to be recognised.

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