Sunday, 30 August 2015

All Saints church, Darsham, Suffolk

 All Saints has to be one of the most welcoming churches I’ve had the pleasure of visiting.
Standing on a corner in the village, it’s like a beacon inviting you in through it’s gates.  The first thing you see  is an amusing sign pointing to the modern toilets - so no need for anyone to cut short their visit here!

The entrance is through the open South door via the porch, At the West end of the church is a typical East Anglia style C15 font which has alternating panels carved with shields held by angels, and lions…four lions stand proud around it’s shaft.   The font cover was made in the early C20 by a local craftsman

Facing the entrance door is a ship’s bell, belonging to the mine sweeper HMS Darsham, it was presented to the church when the ship was de-commissioned.

                        Over the South doorway is a pleasing Coat of Arms of George lV
This a church where the Chancel is almost as big as the nave.

 There’s a C17 restored pulpit and a brass lectern, and benches which have poppy head ends

A niche for holding a statue is in the East jamb of one of the four beautiful perpendicular nave windows

There are three more perpendicular windows in the chancel plus a charming old lancet window

The chancel shows work of restoration which has been sympathetically done.
On the North wall of the Chancel hangs a hatchment for Charles Purvis d.1808  he had lived at Darsham House

An impressive memorial for the influential Thomas Bedingfield d.1661 is also placed on the North chancel wall...

...He was the cousin of Anne Bedingfield,a Norfolk lady who came to stay with her Suffolk relatives after she was widowed. She is buried under the chancel floor and has a superb brass on her ledgerstone.  She died in 1641

There are also two other small brasses in the church for Marion Reve c1490 and William Garard c1530

 Outside the church once more, and it’s obvious that the tower was added on to the church either late C15 or early C16   The Norman doorway is bricked up.

There are some interesting headstones in this spacious churchyard, including these below of families 
who once lived at Darsham House:-

< Parry-Crooke Family

                                         Hadley Family >

Others Headstones of interest:-
Joseph son of Joseph and Sarah Good(a?) d.1856 aged 20yrs and his five elder infant  siblings:- Elizabeth d 1819, Philip d.1821, Catherine d. 1825, Letitia d.1826 and Georgeanna d.1830. >>

Henry son of Thomas and susan Ma(nn?) d.1832 and his siblings
Susan d.1832 aged 4yrs
Charles d.1834 aged 2yrs
A stillborn baby (no date)     

William Langstaff Weddall MA d.1851 aged 43 years, 
Wife Louisa Mary d.1891 aged 80 years
 Daughter Louisa Catherine Ellen d.1846 aged 4 months
                                     Daughter Louisa Mary died 1848 aged 1 month

Jeremiah Eastaugh, Blacksmith.d.late 1700s
" My sledge and hammer ,
My bellows too have lost their wind
My fire extinct my forge decayed

My coals are spent my iron gone
My nails are drove my work is done"

 Purvis family gravestones were almost hidden in the undergrowth >

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