These are some recent photos I took of a particularly lovely old church in our town. It is dedicated to St John the Baptist and is definitely of 12th century Norman foundation, possibly earlier. The first priest of whom there are records was one Glou, acting as witness to a document in 1189.
The heavily battlemented tower was used as the base for a wooden platform
which would have jutted out to act as a defensive
and lookout post for invaders from the sea or from the nearby duneland.
The preaching cross base in the churchyard is ancient but the cross itself is more modern.
The South Porch, used as the normal entrance into the church.
This was used as the schoolroom of the parish.
The large stone on the left is a memorial stone;
on the right is the 14th century Holy Water stoup.
This is the view from the altar,
looking back to the tower and the West Door.
And this is the incredibly rare, original mediaeval solid stone altar slab.
King Edward VI's henchmen were meticulous
in following his orders to destroy every stone altar slab
in every church in England and Wales, but seem to have missed this one :-)
The East window above the altar, designed by Edward Burne-Jones, the Pre-Raphaelite artist.
If you look closely, the central figure of Christ is beardless.
The reason for this is.....
...as a tribute to the beardless figure of Christ on the unique
15th century Grotesque school pulpit which depicts the Flagellation of Christ.
The stairs lead to the pulpit on the left and to the right they lead
to the platform which would have enabled the choir to stand by the Rood Loft.
The Loft and platform are sadly long gone, thanks to the iconoclastic Reformation,
but the two squints which would allow the choir to follow
the progress of the Mass still remain.
One of them is shown above.
Part of the mediaeval wall painting depicting
the beheading of John the Baptist,
and a very modern icon of the saint.
On the South wall is another painting,
which is believed to be the Archangel Gabriel.
The sanctuary roof
The 1914-1918 Memorial window is by Halliday,
an 80 year old former pupil of Burne-Jones,
who also chose to depict Christ as beardless.
A view of the south of the church and the churchyard.