SK8172 : Bench mark, St Gregory's church, Fledborough

taken 4 years ago, near to North Clifton, Nottinghamshire, Great Britain

Bench mark, St Gregory's church, Fledborough
Bench mark, St Gregory's church, Fledborough
On a buttress on the north side of the chancel.
Bench Mark
Bench marks were historically used to record the height above sea level of a location as surveyed against the Mean Sea Level data (taken at Clarendon Dock, Belfast, for Northern Ireland data, Newlyn in Cornwall for data in Great Britain and Portmoor Pier, Malin Head, for data relating to the Republic of Ireland). They were used as part of a greater surveying network by the UK Ordnance Survey, Ordnance Survey Northern Ireland (OSNI) and the Ordnance Survey Ireland (OSI). If the exact height of one bench mark is known then the exact height of the next can be found by measuring the difference in heights, through a process of spirit levelling. In this way hundreds of thousands of bench marks were sited all around the UK & Ireland from the mid 19th to late 20th centuries. There are several distinct types of bench mark:

- Fundamental bench marks have been constructed at selected sites where foundations can be set on stable strata such as bedrock. Each FBM consists of a buried chamber with a brass bolt set in the top of a granite pillar. See NG8825 : Dornie fundamental bench mark for an example. FBMs were used in Ireland as well as GB but those in Ireland do not have any surface markers, nor are they marked on standard maps.
- Flush brackets consist of metal plates about 90 mm wide and 175 mm long. Each bracket has a unique serial number. They are most commonly found on most Triangulation Pillars, some churches or on other important civic buildings. See J3270 : Flush Bracket, Belfast for an example.
- Cut bench marks are the commonest form of mark. They consist of a horizontal bar cut into a wall or brickwork and are found just about anywhere. A broad arrow is cut immediately below the centre of the horizontal bar. See J3372 : Bench Mark, Belfast for an example. The horizontal mark may be replaced by or contain a bolt - see J1486 : Bench Mark, Antrim.
Other marks include:
- Projecting bench marks such as SD8072 : Projecting Bracket Benchmark on St Oswald's Tower
- Bolt bench marks such as SJ1888 : OSBM bolt on Hilbre Island
- Rivet bench marks such as J3978 : Bench Mark, Holywood
- Pivot bench marks such as SJ2661 : Pivot bench mark on Leeswood Bridge

Bench marks are commonly found on older buildings or other semi-permanent features such as stone bridges or walls. Due to updated mapping techniques and technological advances such as GPS, bench marks are no longer maintained. Many are still in existence and the markers will probably remain until they are eventually destroyed by redevelopment or erosion.
Church of St Gregory, Fledborough
The church comprises a nave and south porch, north and south aisles, chancel, and west tower. The earliest (12th century) fabric belongs to the lowest stage of the tower , the upper stage being Early English. The nave and aisles date from the 13th century with later additions including a 14th century clerestory; the chancel was virtually completely rebuilt in 1890.

Inside the aisle arcades on both sides are 13th century Early English work. Although the aisles date from this period, the windows are later, 15th century insertions in Perpendicular style. The clerestory is 14th century Decorated. In the late 18th century the chancel was ruinous and rebuilt on a smaller scale, and further rebuilt in the 19th century when it was extended again. Until the 18th century there was a chantry chapel at the east end of the south aisle, the blocked archway to which is still evident.

The interior also has a number of interesting fittings and features. Of particular interest are the remains of an Easter Sepulchre, probably 14th century work, reinstated in the north wall of the chancel when this was rebuilt in the 19th century. The main surviving panel depicts the soldiers sleeping at the tomb.

A tomb recess in the north wall of the north aisle with a tomb slab with foliate cross is believed to be that of Hugo of Normanton, rector of Fledborough 1287-1318. There is a plain octagonal font, thought also to be 14th century. In the north aisle can be found two stone effigies of a knight and a lady. Both are 14th century and are thought to represent Sir John de Lisieux and Dame Clemence de Lisieux. He was probably responsible for the 14th century expansion of the church. The effigies would originally have been in the south aisle chantry chapel. A poor box carved from a single piece of oak stands inside the south door with the inscription 'REMEMBER THE POORE 1684'.

The church is fortunate in possessing some fine examples of 14th century stained glass. Most noteworthy is the east window of the north aisle which contains two full panels depicting St John the Baptist and St Andrew (left panel) and (right) the Madonna and Child and an unidentified knight in armour, possibly the benefactor. The smaller lights contain heraldic devices. There are other fragments of similar age in the other north aisle windows. In the window of the north side of the chancel, further fragments have been gathered together which are thought to be even earlier.

In 1991 the church was declared redundant and passed into the hands of the Churches Conservation Trust LinkExternal link . For more information about the church see the Southwell & Nottingham Church History Project LinkExternal link . At the time of my visit their entry had not been completed and much of the information above comes from the guide in the church compiled in 2003 by Canon Jean Calvert. The church is Listed Grade I.
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SK8172, 85 images   (more nearby )
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Date Taken
Friday, 22 August, 2014   (more nearby)
Thursday, 28 August, 2014
Geographical Context
Construction, Development 
Building Material (from Tags)
Primary Subject of Photo
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SK 8122 7220 [10m precision]
WGS84: 53:14.4374N 0:47.0668W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SK 8122 7220
View Direction
SOUTH (about 180 degrees)
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Bench Mark 

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