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HER Number:MDV1417
Name:St Mary's, Kentisbeare


The tower and chancel date to the late 14th or early 15th century. The nave possibly incorporates earlier work. The south aisle was added by early 16th century.


Grid Reference:ST 068 081
Map Sheet:ST00NE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishKentisbeare
DistrictMid Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishKENTISBEARE

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Church of England HER: 4936
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: ST00NE/1
  • Old Listed Building Ref (I): 95760

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • PARISH CHURCH (XIV to XIX - 1301 AD to 1900 AD (Between))

Full description

CHALK, Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV44086.

Detailed description of the church's history and architecture.(chalk).

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV56336.

Parish church.

CHALK, DCNQ 14, Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV56339.

Kentisbeare church has every mark of an instance of the main door of a church on the north side. The two stones at the foot of the north door seem to be the oldest things in the church (all this refers to earlier discussion on church approaches, see crf) (chalk, dcnq 14).

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV56341.

Copeland, g. W. /tda/96(1964)24/proceedings at the 102nd meeting.

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV56342.


Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV56343.

Des=mhlg prov list ref no.2431/11/a(june 1959) map 24/1.

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV56344.

Thompson, a. H. /arch. J. /70(1913)462,470,475,482,490/church architecture in devon.

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV56345.

Pengelly, w. /tda/8(1876)714/devon gleanings from notes + queries.

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV56346.

Chalk, e. S. /tda/42(1910)294-313/the town, manors, and church of kentisbeare.

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV56347.

Chalk, e. S. /dcnq/14(1926-1927)13-14/ashburton church approach.

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV56348.


Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV56349.

Cherry, b. + pevsner, n. /buildings of england: devon/(1989)514.

Untitled Source (Aerial Photograph). SDV56350.

Aph=dap/ug 3-5(15/5/1991).

Department of Environment, Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV325891.

Parish church. Tower and chancel late c14 or early c15, the nave possibly incorporates earlier work; south aisle added by john whityng (died 1529); c19 vestry. A great variety of different stone incorporated in the church. West tower, nave, west porch, chancel, south aisle to both nave and chancel; vestry added at west end of south aisle. See doe list for full details (doe).

COPELAND, Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV33318.

Vis=11/6/1964 (copeland) unusual treatment of tower, containing chequerwork of freestone and rubble employed in a manner not to be seen elsewhere in devon. Attention was drawn to the decoration of the north doorway and of the canopied niche over it; the good south arcade, on whose pier-caps are the arms of the whytings, pauncefoots and clevedons, besides wool-sacks and a merchants mark; the fine west gallery, dated 1632; the soffit-panelled tower-arch; the handsome vaulted rood screen; and the two chest tombs in the south chapel, both originally with brasses, of which there are some remains, one in memory of mary carew, 1558, and the other of john and anne whytyng, 1529.(copeland).

Brine, M. E., 2013, War Memorials, Photo (Website). SDV351333.

Church contains a WWI war memorial which was extended to accommodate the names of the fallen of WWII.

Historic England, 2018, National Heritage List for England, 1106503 (National Heritage List for England). SDV360653.

Parish Church of St Mary. Parish church. Tower and chancel late C14 or early C15; the nave possibly incorporates earlier work; south aisle added by John Whityng (died 1529); C19 vestry. Materials: a great variety of different stone: Beer stone and a rare cinnamon coloured red sandstone quarried near Cullompton are used to form a chequer pattern on the north side of the tower; otherwise mostly coursed or random rubble sandstone with some volcanic trap and Beer stone; C19 work in limestone, the vestry of flint. Dry slate roofs. Plan: West tower, nave, west porch, chancel, south aisle to both nave and chancel; vestry added at west end of south aisle. Exterior: tall battlemented tower of 2 stages with plinth; the north side is the show front with battlemented polygonal stair turret and set-back buttresses decorated in a chequer pattern. 2-light belfry openings, Perpendicular 3-light window and contemporary west doorway. North side: the nave wall is the only part of the church that lacks a plinth, and the masonry is also laid differently. It is possibly earlier. 2 late C15 or early C16 3-light Perpendicular windows to nave. C15 porch with ceiled wagon roof, with canopied niches above both inner and outer doorways, that to the former the more elaborate of the two. Chancel with smaller Perpendicular windows then nave, much renewed. South side with a good set of early C16 windows, that to the south aisle east, almost intact, the others restored. Stair turret to rood loft and aisle rof. Pretty late C19 vestry with its roof aligned north-south. Interior: no chancel arch; 5 bay arcade. Crisp, high-quality foliated capitals - those to the west piers are of coarse workmanship and-wavy mouldings to piers. The pier flanking the Whityng chapel (south of the chancel) is adorned with his coat of arms and the symbols of his trade. Tower arch with panelled intrados. Ceiled wagon roof throughout, all medieval, except above the Whytyng chapel which is C19. South aisle embellished with shield-bearing angles at wall plate level. Screen: 10-bay rood screen is one of the finest in the country, with flamboyant elements, and a great variety of design and detailing (each bay is different). Bligh Bond (see references below) considered it to be the prototype of the 'Exe- Valley' class of screens. It displays the arms of John Whityng. Parclose, of 4 bays, to a different design, and less well preserved. Font: hexagonal, stone, and probably C15. Piscina: Whityng chapel, early C16. C16 panelling to east wall of Whytyng chapel, believed to have been brought here from Bradfield House (q.v.) C17 bellringing chamber floor. Fine gallery (west end) dated 1632, with cornice and rail presumably added in the late C18 or early C19 when the gallery was re-seated. Pulpit, apparently once dated 1736, and signed by Isaac Bonifant (reference Pevsner, see below). C18 charity boards. C19 nave benches and chancel stalls. Reredos of 1881. Monuments: the most noteworthy are (in chronological order): (1) Tomb chest of John Whityng in the Whityng chapel. Beer stone with polyplant slab. Brasses largely missing but illustrated in Hamilton Rogers, Sepulchral Effigies of Devonshire (2) Tomb chest of Lady Buildford, pl. died 1558, also in the Whityng chapel. The memorial inscription brass set into the C16 panelling along the east wall. (3) 2 wall monuments that commemorate charities (a) of William Evelyn, died 1671, north wall of nave and (b) Edmund Crosse (not dated, but C17), both stone with architrave. (4) Wall monument to Rev. J.W. Scott, died 1820, chancel south wall. A good cosmopolitan piece (not signed) commemorating Sir Walter Scott's nephew; Scott penned the inscription which is placed on a scroll hanging over an obliquely-set sarcophagns, the whole revealed by a life-sized naked child. All marble. Glass: medieval fragments in south aisle, east window. East window, and possibly the others in the chancel, by Clayton and Bell, 1882.
Date first listed: 5th April 1966

Sources / Further Reading

SDV325891Migrated Record: Department of Environment.
SDV33318Migrated Record: COPELAND.
SDV351333Website: Brine, M. E.. 2013. War Memorials. http://www.devonheritage.org/WarMemorials.htm. Website. Photo.
SDV360653National Heritage List for England: Historic England. 2018. National Heritage List for England. Historic Houses Register. Digital. 1106503.
SDV44086Migrated Record: CHALK.
SDV56336Migrated Record:
SDV56339Migrated Record: CHALK, DCNQ 14.
SDV56341Migrated Record:
SDV56342Migrated Record:
SDV56343Migrated Record:
SDV56344Migrated Record:
SDV56345Migrated Record:
SDV56346Migrated Record:
SDV56347Migrated Record:
SDV56348Migrated Record:
SDV56349Migrated Record:
SDV56350Aerial Photograph:

Associated Monuments

MDV104340Parent of: War Memorial in St. Mary's Church (Monument)
MDV77234Related to: Chest Tomb Adjacent to Porch of St. Marys, Kentisbeare (Building)
MDV71742Related to: St Marys Parish Church, Gate & Piers (Building)
MDV77236Related to: Walrond Chest Tomb, St. Marys Churchyard, Kentisbeare (Building)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Jan 4 2018 1:04PM