Monday, 29 April 2013

Haverhill, Suffolk

I also failed to create an entry for St Mary the Virgin, I don't know why because I really rather liked it despite it being locked without keyholders. It had recently undergone a major refurbishment and was very spick and span; the poor thing doesn't deserve to be stuck in the hideousness that is Haverhill.

ST MARY. A fire in 1665 is recorded. The church looks at present over-restored in the C19. W tower Dec below (see the arch towards the nave) and Perp higher up. Stair-turret at the SE corner rising higher than the tower. Nave and aisles, clerestory, S chapel, and chancel; all Perp except for a blocked C13 lancet in the chancel. Pinnacles on the S aisle. N doorway decorated with fleurons, etc. The arcades inside were rebuilt in 1867; those in the S chapel are in order (moulding with four shafts and four hollows, arches with two-wave moulding). - PLATE. Cup and Paten 1659. - MONUMENT. John Ward, Elizabethan; no date. Tablet with oddly steep gable with strapwork. The inscription is framed by mottos such as Watch, Warde, Lightes here, stares hereafter. The Latin inscription runs as follows:

Quo si quis sciuit scitius
Aut si quis docuit doctius
At rarus vixit sanctius
Et nullus tonuit fortius.

 St Mary the Virgin (4)

St Mary the Virgin (2)

HAVERHILL. From near and far we see its splendid windmill, stately on a hill. With a huge vaned wheel in place of sails, it is said to be the oldest of its kind in England.

Haverhill had its Great Fire a year before London’s, when most of its buildings and part of the church were destroyed. The old market continued; courage repaired the ravages; and the 19th century witnessed a burst of energy producing in less than 25 years the court house, the corn exchange, and the fine town hall, a splendid achievement for a little place which, despite its manufacture of silk, cloth, matting, bricks, boots, and gloves, has never had a population exceeding 5000.

The church has a 14th century tower topped in the next, a wild man with a bludgeon mounting guard on the parapet. The font, modernised in the 15th century, came unscathed through the great fire. The lady chapel has a peace memorial screen, carved by comrades and townsmen of the heroes it celebrates. Under the tower we found an old chest with linenfold panels, and in the vestry a Jacobean table. In the chancel is a tablet to Robert Roberts, whose 56 years of preaching last century is acknowledged by a window to his memory ; and another tablet is to Dr John Ward, a 16th century vicar whose two sons suffered for their faith.

Samuel Ward was a scholar and artist who combined a lectureship here with the oflice of town preacher at Ipswich. His skill as a caricaturist incurred the censure of the Spanish ambassador on account of a cartoon showing the wreck of the Armada, a Gunpowder Plot incident, and a representation of the Pope and cardinals in conference with Satan. James the First, who sacrificed even Raleigh to the enmity of Spain, urged his dismissal from office; but Ipswich was faithful to him, and, though he was persecuted and imprisoned by Laud and fled to Holland, he returned to Ipswich and died there. His brother Nathaniel ministered at a Protestant church in Germany, and was a rector in Essex before he sailed for Massachusetts, one of Laud’s victims. He named a town there after his own Haverhill.

The two Wards were not the only sons of this place to suffer for conscience sake, for Thomas Cobb went out from here to perish in the fire at Thetford in the red reign of Mary Tudor.

No comments:

Post a Comment