Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Ashen, Essex

St Augustine was locked but with keyholders listed however I had neither the time, inclination or top up credit to track down the key so did exteriors and left.

ST AUGUSTINE OF CANTERBURY. One small lance window in the nave indicates a C13 origin. The W tower with diagonal buttresses and battlements was added about 1400, the brick stair-turret with the battlements on a trefoiled corbel-frieze about 1525. The chancel dates from 1857. - DOOR in S doorway, with damaged C13 ironwork. - BENCHES. A few fragments in the nave. Also an inscription in Roman capitals, dated 1620, which reads : ‘This hath bin the churching the mearring stool and so it shall be still’. - PLATE. Cup and Paten of c.1570. - MONUMENTS. Brass to a Knight of c. 1440, the figure 21 in. long (nave, E end). - Luce Tallakarne d. 1610, an odd design with termini caryatids and between them decoration with panels, a shield, and the inscription plates.

St Augustine (2)

ASHEN. From the street of this upland village we look over the Stour into Suffolk. Its flint tower was built about 1400, and the brick turret was new about 1520; but two of the bells (called Thomas and Alice) were made 600 years ago, and the third is 15th century. The church is small, but very old, the nave having been built by the Normans and the 13th century men. A porch of Shakespeare’s day covers a doorway 200 years older, making a frame for a door with 13th century hinges.

There are two little pews 500 years old, a nave roof about the same age, a carved chair of the 18th century, and a curious panel of 1620 which tells us it has been the marrying stool and "so it shall be still." In the nave are brass portraits thought to be John and Frances Hunt, who would be alive when the victory of Agincourt was the talk of the land. John, in armour, stands on a lion; and looking up at Frances is a little dog with bells on its collar.


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