Monument record KSY 010 - Church of St Mary

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Kersey church is in the diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, the archdeaconry of Ipswich and the deanery of Hadleigh.


Grid reference Centred TM 0020 4393 (97m by 123m)
Map sheet TM04SW


Type and Period (2)

Full Description

Kersey church is in the diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, the archdeaconry of Ipswich and the deanery of Hadleigh. Status: vicarage (S1). The structure is: chancel, nave, N aisle, N and S porches, W tower (S2). The chancel windows are Decorated. The wall between the chancel and the N aisle is pierced by an oblique square head opening and three narrow cinquefoil-headed windows. In 1862 the chancel was rebuilt and a new E window installed. Six panels of the lower part of the rood screen remain with painted figures upon them. The nave is Decorated. The font is an early C15 stone octagon with a short shaft and quatrefoils on each face. The bowl has alternate angels and quatrefoils. The arcade consists of seven arches, supported by octagon pillars. The N aisle was probably built just prior to the Black Death in 1348. During the first half of the C14 the old N wall of the nave was removed and an arcade inserted. The intention was to build a new church but owing to the Black Death, it was never finished; tool marks are still visible throughout the arcade. A chapel exists at the E end of the N aisle and this contains a piscina and three-stall sedilia, all with arch canopy work. Once beautiful niches flanked the E window of the chapel and in the middle of the N wall was an elaborate multi-cusped, canopied and pinnacled recess. The N aisle roof has a cambered form with mock principals on the S side formed into the main continous 'lean-to' beams. The last two bays over the chapel have been plastered over. The roof rests on a uniquely elaborate stone wall-plate, which tells a long story, not yet recognised. The N porch is Perpendicular, with two bays. There is a niche over the arch and ornamented spandrils. The N porch also contains a stoup, which is inside the door. The S porch is Perpendicular and of two bays; it is a fine example of stone and flint panelling with excellent buttresses terminating in crocketted pinnacles. The roof of the S porch is divided into sixteen panels. It has heavily moulded timbers with brattishing completely surrounding the panels, which are filled with diverse and elaborate tracery. The W tower is a Perpendicular square tower of flints with buttresses; it does not stand central with the nave. The tower has diagonal buttresses with four set-offs; both the buttresses and, the battlements have flushwork tracery (S2). In 1888 the church underwent drastic restoration. The elaborately carved oak work in the N aisle, the pews, and the three-decker pulpit were all cleared away. The old gallery was taken down and the church was re-floored. In 1958 the chancel of 1862 was 're-arranged' and a new altar provided (S2).

Sources/Archives (4)

  • <S1> (No record type): SAU, Suffolk Parishes, a guide to their archaeol and hist, 1984-1985, ms.
  • <M1> (No record type): Roof survey drawings, SAU..
  • <R1> Bibliographic reference: Barker, H. R.. 1907. West Suffolk Illustrated. 221, plate.
  • <S2> (No record type): SAU (Atkinson R G), Summ of Doc Sources for Churches in Suff, 1986, ms.

Finds (0)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (0)

Record last edited

Mar 6 2012 11:13AM

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