Thursday, 20 October 2016

Frostenden, All Saints church

I first came to visit this church over four years ago and was disappointed to find it locked, but recently I heard that it was now open on a Saturday morning….I’m so pleased I made a return visit  here. I hadn’t been expecting too much to excite me because from the outside it looks like any other  unpretentious little country church, but I was so wrong as it’s a sheer delight inside! The church is situated down a lane leading to Frostenden Hall and these are the only two dwelling places in sight 

A delightful sundial hangs over the C14 porch door – it bids us “Vigilate et Orate” (watch and pray)

I have never before seen  so much old graffiti on a church door arch, some of it over 400 hundred years old

A corbel head looks down on us from the porch ceiling and a C14 bench stands on either side of the porch
Stepping into the nave there’s a Holy water stoup in the S wall and set against the W wall is a resplendent Altar frontal chest which was made from panels of an early pulpit (the present pulpit is C19)

The font is late C15 and has Tudor roses and blank shields around it’s bowl 

The interior of the church is larger than I expected and light and airy. It had a late C14 side chapel added which retains it’s piscina in the S wall, and has a memorial window dedicated to Frances Elizabeth G Vincent.

One of the two biers belonging to this church has now found it's home in this side chapel, it is a hand-held bier from the early C17. A wheeled model from 1925 stands at the rear of the nave

 Electricity is now making use of the wrought iron bracketed oil lamp holders 

Although there’s now no chancel screen the open stairs leading to the rood loft remain in the S wall of the chancel behind the prayer desk, which has two C15 poppy head bench ends.

I believe the chancel dates from c1220 and the sanctuary still has a piscina and sedilia in situ.  The oak reredos is fairly modern (1916) but it blends in beautifully with the rest of the church furnishings.

There are two pleasant stained glass memorial windows in the chancel- one from the 1890s and the other a decade later.

Certainly main benefactors of this church were the Glover family who resided at Frostenden Hall 1626-1769. The church contains many memorials to them on the chancel walls and floor.

 I love the name on one particular ledger-stone in the church  ‘Hammondus’ Glover  - sadly I seem to have mislaid the photograph I took of that particular ledgerstone!

There is a nice war memorial just through the gate leading up to the church

This church has a large fairly unkempt graveyard which is a shame as the church itself is lovely.

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