SP9599 : Church of St. John the Baptist, Wakerley

taken 4 years ago, near to Wakerley, Northamptonshire, Great Britain

Church of St. John the Baptist, Wakerley
Church of St. John the Baptist, Wakerley
The tower and spire from the south east. 14th century, Decorated style. Note the different styles of the openings to the bell chamber on the two faces.
Church of St. John the Baptist, Wakerley

The church consists of nave and chancel, the nave having chapels on north and south sides forming partial aisles. There is a west tower and spire and a porch alongside the north chapel.

It has 12th century origins of which the east wall of the nave with its fine chancel arch, and part of the south wall of the nave are the only remains. The church was largely rebuilt in the 13th century, when the south chapel was added, and again in the 14th when the tower was built and the north porch added. In the 15th century the chancel was rebuilt and the north chapel built or rebuilt in its current form. Further work on the chancel was undertaken in the 17th century, and there was the usual 19th century refurbishment, although this had less effect on the visual aspect of the church than in many places.

The chancel arch makes an initial impact on entering the church, with its wide span of chevron mouldings. It is likely to have been circular when built, probably assuming its arched shape during the 13thy century rebuilding. It is especially noteworthy for the figurative carving of the capitals, thought to be associated either with a mason working at nearby Castor or one from Ely Cathedral. On this basis the work is dated to 1120-30. The blind arches either side are indicative that there were originally side chapels within the nave before the side chapels were built. The rest of the work is good but unexceptional. An inter4esting feature are the rather crudely carved bosses on the centre line of the nave roof. The roof was rebuilt in the 18th century, but the bosses may be earlier. Specifically what they depict is unclear.

Externally the tower and spire immediately draw attention. These were built as a single unit in the 14th century in late Decorated style. The tower is of four stages, the middle two being relatively short. The bell chamber has long openings which are distinguished by having a variety of styles. On the east and west faces, there is a square top to the openings, on the south face they have round arch tops and on the north face pointed arches. There is a fine frieze of qutrefoil panels below the battlemented parapet. The octagonal spire is set back from the parapet; it is decorated with ballflower on the edges and there are two tiers of lucarnes on alternating faces. The original profile of the nave roof can be seen on the east face. Other noteworthy external features are the good 15th century Perpendicular windows in the east walls of chancel and north chapel.

The church is Listed Grade I, and is in the care of the Churches Conservation Trust LinkExternal link having been made redundant.

Creative Commons Licence [Some Rights Reserved]   © Copyright Alan Murray-Rust and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.
1:50,000 Modern Day Landranger(TM) Map © Crown Copyright
1:50,000 Modern Day Landranger(TM) Map © Crown Copyright
TIP: Click the map for Large scale mapping
Change to interactive Map >
Grid Square
SP9599, 149 images   (more nearby search)
  (find more nearby)
Date Taken
Monday, 4 April, 2016   (more nearby)
Friday, 8 April, 2016
Geographical Context
Historic sites and artefacts  Village, Rural settlement  Religious sites 
Period (from Tags)
14th Century 
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SP 9565 9921 [10m precision]
WGS84: 52:34.9378N 0:35.3855W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SP 9566 9920
View Direction
Northwest (about 315 degrees)
Looking for a postcode? Try this pageExternal link
Clickable map

Other Tags
Church Tower  Church Spire  Decorated Style 

Click a tag, to view other nearby images.

Image classification(about): Supplemental image
This page has been viewed about 15 times.
View this location: KML (Google Earth) · Google MapsExternal link · Bing MapsExternal link · Geograph Coverage Map · geotagged! More Links for this image
W Go E
thumbs up icon
You are not logged in login | register