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Churches & Pubs in 2009
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Church and Pub next door

The Churches & Pub Group meets on the 1st Wednesday of each month,
10am at the village hall, unless stated otherwise.


Please inform Steve Reynolds beforehand if you wish to come on any visit.  We need to provide both church & pub with an indication of numbers.

March 18th.        St Oswalds, Ashbourne; Cockayne & Boothby tombs, outstanding stained glass,                                      daffodils in season in the Churchyard.
                          Pub;  Olde Gate at Brassington (near Carsington Water).

April 15th.          St Michaels, Macclesfield; Originally medieval, rebuilt in Victorian Gothic. Famous                                   Savage Chapel.
                          Pub;  Church House Inn at Sutton.  (Report click here!)

June 3rd.            St Mary the Virgin, Clumber Park, Nottinghamshire.  Bodley’s Gothic Masterpiece.
                         Pub;  To be decided.
                         Depart 9.15am       (Report click here!)

September 2nd.  
Holy Angels, Hoar Cross, Staffordshire
                                Pub;  The Goats Head, a 16th century inn in Abbots Bromley.  (Report click here!)

October 21st.      Fairfield Moravian Church.
                          Pub;  To be decided.   Depart 10.00am


March 18th.  St Oswalds, Ashbourne:- click here for report on visit

April 15th.    St Michael & All Angels, Macclesfield & The Church House, Sutton

On April 15th 2009, thirty happy souls made their way in fine weather to visit the church of St Michael & All Angels in Macclesfield. The church has been located in the Market Place since 1278 and is therefore known locally as The Church In The Market Place.

Many changes have taken place over the years, thanks to the generosity of
'the great and the good' of the town. Major additions such as the Legh Chapel (1442) and the Savage Chapel (1502) where the heart of Thomas Savage, Archbishop of York, was reputedly enclosed in the walls even though his body was buried at York Minster.

The first class of the Kings School was founded in a small upper room of the church, in 1502, where the school master slept. The church also boasts of having the only peal of 12 bells in the county with a tenor bell weighing some 26cwts.

A re-ordering of the church was completed in 2004, to allow for more flexible use of the building.

Thank you to Rev. David Wightman for an enjoyable and informative tour.

The group then drove to The Church House in the village of Sutton for light refreshment. A very pleasant time was had by all.  Thanks to Steve Reynolds for arranging.

Should anyone be interested in borrowing the précis version of ‘The Story of Macclesfield Parish Church’, please contact:

Joan Wheelhouse
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June 3rd.      St Mary the Virgin, Clumber Park, Nottinghamshire.  St Mary the Virgin, Clumber Park

 30 members visited the Chapel of St Mary in Clumber Park now owned by the National Trust. We were met by Danielle Brown, Chapel Steward and our guide for the visit. The chapel along with the stables are now the only original buildings left on the estate,formerly owned by the Dukes of Newcastle. Clumber House itself was demolished in 1938 and the estate acquired by NT in 1946.

The 7th Duke,a devout Anglo Catholic commissioned George Frederick Bodley the leading Church designer of Victorian times to design & build Clumber Chapel in 1886. It took 3 years & the 2 men eventually quarrelled over the cost which escalated to more than £40000 from an original estimate of £30000. Because of the quarrel the work was completed by others but Bodley continued to regard Clumber as his finest creation.

The style is English Gothic with the distinctive 180 ft spire modelled on Patrington Church in East Yorkshire. Inside, the chancel is almost as long as the nave but considerably grander, a church definitely built for a rich family and their estate workers. Both the east and west stained glass windows are outstanding, the work of C E Kempe a favoured artist of the Anglo Catholic movement.

The choir stalls, made of walnut and cedar, have superb carvings of sacred emblems,saints and texts. They are the work of  the Rev. Ernest Geldhart, a very talented gentleman: he took holy orders & combined the work of a priest with that of an ecclesiastical craftsman. Very high in a tribune on the north side of the choir is the organ, a three manual instrument by Gray & Davison & recently restored.

The north transept contains the only object not originally designed for Clumber Chapel. The tomb of  Georgina, wife of the 4th Duke who died after giving birth to twins, was moved here in 1965 following a break-in at its original site 5 miles away. In the baptistry the font is enclosed by a magnificent cedarwood cover carved with panels representing the seven sacraments.

All in all a most interesting visit & we will be able to compare Clumber with another Bodley Church – Hoar Cross when we visit in September.

Afterwards we had lunch in the NT restaurant and then a look around the estate which includes a walled kitchen garden complete with Palm House and Conservatory.
Steve Reynolds                                                 
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2nd September - Visit to Holy Angels, Hoar Cross, Staffordshire

Holy Angels is a memorial church to Hugo, the husband of Emily Meynell Ingram, daughter of Lord Halifax, who was killed in a hunting accident.  The church is in the grounds of the old hall which is now a flourishing health spa.

As we parked alongside the church, built in sandstone and designed by the Victorian architect G F Bodley, the tower contrived to soar above us despite its lack of a spire.

Unusually, it faces north/south and inside is all Victorian high gothic with all the trimmings.  The nave is quite gloomy but what takes the eye are the 14 stations of the cross superbly crafted in relief by Belgian wood carvers.  The chancel is taller than the nave, vaulted and lit by lofty stained glass windows and lined with panelling and saints.  The stone reredos is magnificent.

The private chapel contains the tombs of Hugo and Emily both on alabaster chests with dogs at their feet.

Our guide for the visit, Derrick Cross, took us into the vestry & showed us the superb original vestments carefully stored in drawers.

Emily was staunchly Anglo-Catholic so he also showed us the cleverly concealed Confessional box.

Although the church is undoubtedly a memorial, we were pleased when Derrick (a very knowledgeable 91 year old) told us weekly Sunday services are held there.  It would be a shame if such a masterpiece of gothic revival was not worshipped in today. 

Afterwards we had refreshments in the Goats Head, a 16th century inn in Abbots Bromley with real ale and excellent lunches on offer. 

Steve Reynolds                                                
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