Elmley Castle, Worcestershire, St Mary’s Church.

Leaving Sedgeberrow we crossed the A46 passing Hinton on the Green which we had visited about 18 months ago. It was picnic time and we found a good place to pull off the road with a good countryside view.

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While we were there a sparrow hawk sat in the trees on the left and also a heron flew by trailing his legs in it’s lazy way. You can still enjoy a picnic even in January and nature is all around you.

On to Elmley Castle. A pretty village, quite busy at lunchtime with cars parked and folks eating at the pub.


The church is in the middle of the village, Pevsner notes that the path to the door continues in line with the village street.

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A lovely village church, dating back to the 12th century, it includes work from the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries. On a January day it was cold inside, colder than outside. As usual there are more images on my Flickr site so here I want to highlight the two superb monuments in the north transept and some interesting stone carving.

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This is the Savage family tomb for William Savage, died 1616, his son Giles, died 1631, and Giles’ wife Katherine who died in1674. Carved in alabaster this is one of the most beautiful tombs I have yet seen. The details in the carving are excellently done.

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Katherine lies holding a baby, every detail of clothing beautifully carved. She died 42 years after her husband so I wonder what is the significance of the baby, perhaps a grand child?

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The foot of the monument with two lions, a stag with an arrow through its neck and four kneeling children. The clothing and footwear look most realistic.

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Four children kneel at the foot of the tomb. Probably the sons of Giles Savage. Pevsner (Alan Brooks 2007) suggests a date of 1631 for the tomb, the work of Samuel Baldwin.

On the opposite wall of the transept is the large monument to Thomas, First Earl of Coventry, died 1699. Signed by William Stanton. This edifice was supposed to be placed in the Coventry family church at Croome d’Abitot but a family dispute made that impossible. The Earl’s widow had married Thomas Savage of Elmley Castle and thus the monument finished up here. His lordship looks very relaxed.

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 Two more pieces of stone carving, firstly the font. The bowl is 16th century but the carved dragons on the base are likely to be from the 13th century and very realistic.

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Finally a small carving of a rabbit from the porch. Undated but certainly medieval. I understand that there is also a pig but the cold beat me in the end. A return visit in warmer weather is needed.

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English parish churches are full of surprises and relics of our history. This one is no exception and well worth a visit. It is usually open.


















































This entry was posted in Churches, Travels in the UK., Worcestershire, Worcestershire Churches and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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