Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Brettenham, Suffolk

Externally St Mary the Virgin is pretty atypical of the churches round here with its flintwork and south porch tower. Why the towers were built as south porch towers I don't know though. Internally over restored but containing some good ledger stones and glass including what I am convinced is an unsigned Christopher Webb Resurrection in the south chancel window.

ST MARY. Essentially C14, with a S porch tower. Nave W window with flowing tracery. Dec Piscina in the chancel with the arms of Stafford and Buckingham. But Perp chancel windows. - FONT. C14, octagonal, with crocketed ogee gables in the panels (cf. Rattlesden). - SCREEN. Bits of tracery from the dado preserved. - LECTERN. A C17 turned baluster. - COMMUNION RAIL. With twisted balusters,c. 1700. - SOUTH DOOR. With a foliage-trail border. - STAINED GLASS. One S window by H. Hughes, 1866. - MONUMENTS. Three coffin-lids with foliated crosses.

S chancel window Christopher Webb Resurrection (8)

George Weniffe 1611 (3)

Margaret Torkington nee Gilbert 1676 (4)

BRETTENHAM. It has a hall with oak avenues running through its 150 acres, a Roman camp a mile away, and a 600-year-old church facing the little green. In the church are altar rails with twisted balusters about 300 years old, some fragments of 15th century glass, two ancient coffin lids with beautiful crosses, and a little traceried screen work. But best of all is the 14th century font, with rich canopies round the bowl; its base is panelled, and the cover must be about half as old as the font itself. In the sanctuary floor we read on a brass that Thomas Wenifie was a gentle and modest young man.

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