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HER Number:MDV10495
Name:ALTAR RAIL in the Parish of Woodbury


The altar rail in St. Swithun's church is said to be one of the finest in the country. Its actual date is unknown, although the carvings are thought to be Elizabethan. There is some evidence to suggest that it came from a church in Exeter.


Grid Reference:SY 009 871
Map Sheet:SY08NW
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishWoodbury
DistrictEast Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishWOODBURY

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SY08NW/11/10

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • ALTAR RAIL (XVI to XIX - 1501 AD to 1900 AD (Between))

Full description

Unknown, Untitled Source (Pamphlet). SDV106310.

Said to be one of the finest altar rails in the country.

Prideaux, E. K., 1910-1911, Examples of Renaissance Church Wood Work in Devon, 97-101 (Article in Serial). SDV106309.

The actual date of the carvings of the altar rails in the parish church is not known. The entry in the Churchwardens' account for the year 1640 suggests that it was a second-hand purchase from an Exeter church. The carvings are thought to be Elizabethan. Before the restoration of 1847 the railings started from the high tomb of Sir Thomas Prideaux and thence ran completely round the altar. The portions of the railings left unused in the alterations were transferred to the face of the then existing gallery, which dated back to 1641. When the gallery was taken down in 1893, the superfluous railings were transferred to the body of the church, to the eastern end of the wide aisle in the north.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV106309Article in Serial: Prideaux, E. K.. 1910-1911. Examples of Renaissance Church Wood Work in Devon. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 6. 97-101.
SDV106310Pamphlet: Unknown. The Parish Church of St. Swithun.

Associated Monuments

MDV10485Part of: St. Swithun, Woodbury (Building)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Sep 30 2015 5:07PM