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St Mary Maiden Newton

Maiden Newton is hardly a town yet is almost too large to be called a village and its splendid medieval church reflects this slightly superior status.  It has been an important place from time immemorial, the rivers Hooke and Frome meet here, a major road runs through the centre and the Victorians built a railway past the outskirts and provided a station, which is active to this day.

The church is ancient and much of it is Norman from around 1100, but this probably replaced an earlier Saxon building of before 787, when it was burnt by marauding Danes.  Of the original Norman building only the west end, the north wall, although the windows are of about 1540, and the lower part of the tower survive.  Of very great importance is the original Norman wooden door in the north wall, which is believed to be still hanging on the original hinges. (It has been suggested that this is one of the oldest church doors in the country.)  Note, behind the pulpit, there is a small Norman door, which leads via a stairway built into the thickness of the wall and a buttress, to the bell ringing chamber above.  Much of the rest of the church is 15c.  Note, the squint on the south side of the chancel arch and the impressive nave roof of 1450. The south porch was built in 1500, although the actual door is early 17c and it too, may be on Norman hinges.  The octagonal font is thought to have been made in about 1250.

The Trust gratefully acknowledges images and text by Robin Adeney ©

This is a fine church that seems to have been little 'improved' by the Victorians, who restricted themselves to simply adding an organ in 1885, a vestry to the north side of the chancel in 1886, an east window and chancel glass and the roof above.

Maiden Newton is hardly a town yet is almost too large to be called a village and its splendid medieval church reflects this slightly superior status.  It has been an important place from time immemorial, the rivers Hooke and Frome meet here, a major road runs through the centre and the Victorians built a railway past the outskirts and provided a station, which is active to this day.

The church is ancient and much of it is Norman from around 1100, but this probably replaced an earlier Saxon building of before 787, when it was burnt by marauding Danes.  Of the original Norman building only the west end, the north wall, although the windows are of about 1540, and the lower part of the tower survive.  Of very great importance is the original Norman wooden door in the north wall, which is believed to be still hanging on the original hinges. (It has been suggested that this is one of the oldest church doors in the country.)  Note, behind the pulpit, there is a small Norman door, which leads via a stairway built into the thickness of the wall and a buttress, to the bell ringing chamber above.  Much of the rest of the church is 15c.  Note, the squint on the south side of the chancel arch and the impressive nave roof of 1450. The south porch was built in 1500, although the actual door is early 17c and it too, may be on Norman hinges.  The octagonal font is thought to have been made in about 1250.

This is a fine church that seems to have been little 'improved' by the Victorians, who restricted themselves to simply adding an organ in 1885, a vestry to the north side of the chancel in 1886, an east window and chancel glass and the roof above.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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