Sunday, 31 October 2010

Shudy Camps, Cambridgeshire

St Mary epitomises for me all that I dislike about the Cambridge style but does hold a personal genealogical interest in the form of several Dayrell monuments, a family who can also be found at Hinxton, Essex, in numbers and Lillingstone Dayrell, Bucks, which is where my interest lies. Before I visited Shudy Camps I hadn't realised that there was a connection so finding the memorials was a pleasant surprise.

By 1700 Hanchetts was owned by Sir Marmaduke Dayrell, whose elder brother Sir Francis (d. 1675) had devised an interest in Shudy Camps manor to him.  Sir Marmaduke was succeeded in 1730 by his son Francis (d. 1760). Passing over his eldest son Brownlow (d. 1773), who became insane, Francis left his Shudy Camps estate to his son Marmaduke (d. 1790), in whose time and that of his son Marmaduke (d. 1821) the manorial rights of the other surviving manors of Shudy Camps were bought in. The last Marmaduke's eldest son Capt. Francis Dayrell died without issue in 1845 and was succeeded by his brother the Revd. Thomas Dayrell (d. 1866). Of Thomas's sons the two eldest, Marmaduke Francis and Charles Lionel, died without issue in 1877 and 1890 respectively. Their next brother, the Revd. Richard Dayrell, offered the debt-burdened estate for sale in 1898.

From: 'Parishes: Shudy Camps', A History of the County of Cambridge and the Isle of Ely: Volume 6 (1978), pp. 49-59. URL:  Date accessed: 31 October 2010.

The church itself however has been heavily restored and, as a result, has, for me, lost much of its charm.

ST MARY. Chancel S doorway C13, see the double-chamfered moulding outside and the hood-mould on two head-stops inside. The rest all Perp. W tower with battlements (l. and r. of the W window two small standing figures), nave and chancel. - SCULPTURE. Small C13 capital from the Cloth Hall at Ypres, which was destroyed in the First World War. - PAINTING. Large Flemish C17 picture of the Mourning of the Dead Christ. - MONUMENTS. Francis Dayrell d. 1760. Large urn flanked by fluted Corinthian pilasters with a segmental top. Two putti outside the pilasters are the only figures. - Mrs Elizabeth Dayrell d. 1768, signed by T. Carter. Large classical urn, the surrounding decoration with drapery and Louis XVI garlands. - Other Dayrell Monuments of 1773, 1790 etc.

St Mary (3)

St Mary

Francis Dayrell 1760

SHUDY CAMPS. A little group of houses by the park in a far-away corner of the county, it has sad memories of war and two visible things to stir us, linked with the catastrophe which tore the world to pieces. Its curious name may come from the vanished earthworks raised when a village did battle for itself. It gave six of its sons for freedom when all Europe was turned into a battlefield in our own time.

Two things we see here from this vast field of war, a wooden cross from the grave of one of the vicar’s two sons who lie in Flanders, and a small bracket which comes from the ruins of the famous Cloth of Ypres. The hall is in the background of the east window which glows in memory of all the men of Shudy Camps who did not come back.

The reredos below this window is an old oil painting of the women the tomb, and is interesting because it is claimed as Vandyck’s. 

It is a plain and simple little church, but it is 15th century, and in the spandrels of the west window are carvings of the Madonna and a warrior. The south porch has a medieval roof and a door still hanging on its ancient hinges.

Flickr set.

1 comment:

  1. I thought you might like to see the research that has been done by myself and others on the Thornton family, beginning with Archibald Clement Thornton who is commemorated with his brother Frederick Edward Thornton on the 3-light commemorative window at St Mary's Church, Shudy Camps. His father, Rev Canon Thornton was vicar of St Mary's; he, his wife and another son and grandson are buried in the churchyard.
    Background: The Imperial War Museum is posting a photograph of a combatant of the First World War under the title 'Faces of the First World War – IWM Centenary project' - here
    and are uploading more photos, one per weekday right up to August 2014, the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of WWI. IWM acquired the photos between 1917 and 1920, following an international public appeal that was advertised in the press as well as wartime ration books.