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HER Number:MDV19368
Name:Holy Trinity Church, Barnstaple


Originally built in the 1840s, all but the tower was rebuilt in 1867 due to poor foundations.


Grid Reference:SS 562 327
Map Sheet:SS53SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishBarnstaple
DistrictNorth Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishBARNSTAPLE

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Church of England HER: 5210
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SS53SE/159
  • Old Listed Building Ref (II)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • CHURCH (XIX - 1801 AD to 1900 AD (Between))

Full description

Wood, J., 1843, Plan of the Town of Barnstaple from Actual Survey (Cartographic). SDV91852.

Sketched in on plan.

Chanter, J. F. + Reed, H., 1907, Second Report of the Church Plate Committee, 116 (Article in Serial). SDV70301.

Details of church plate recorded. See article for details.

Pevsner, N., 1952, The Buildings of England: North Devon, 47 (Monograph). SDV336196.

1867 by White. The tower is from Mackintosh's unsuccessful previous church of 1842-7.

Hoskins, W. G., 1954, A New Survey of England: Devon, 329 (Monograph). SDV17562.

All but the tower was rebuilt in 1868 because of bad foundations.

Ordnance Survey, 2013, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV350786.

English Heritage, 2013, National Heritage List for England (National Heritage List for England). SDV350785.

Church of Holy Trinity and attached railings and gate. Parish church. Tower 1843-1845 by D Mackintosh and G Abbot, remainder rebuilt 1867 by William White (Pevsner), although the nave rainwater heads are dated 1843. Tower rubble with tooled ashlar dressing; remainder of church snecked stone with ashlar and Bath stone dressings; slate roofs with lead rolls. Free Gothic style, mostly influenced by medieval Perpendicular with French Gothic influences to E end. PLAN: 4-bay nave and aisles; apsidal chancel with pairs of projecting bays on N & S sides; SW tower. EXTERIOR: notably grand, tall, Somerset-influenced tower; nave with clerestory; chancel roof lower than nave; aisles with lean-to roofs. Coped parapets to chancel, chancel bays and nave. Exterior includes good carved figures on nave and tower. 3-sided buttressed apsidal E end with five 2-light Decorated style traceried windows, the E window larger. N and S sides have 2 projecting bays with hipped roofs and 2-light traceried windows. Aisles have buttresses with set-offs. N side has moulded N doorway with square-headed hoodmould. S side has similar doorway to W and a doorway at the E, typically William White, with stone-slated pent roof carried over it from aisle buttress to W side of S chancel bay. S side has flat-roofed vestry with parapet in angle between aisle and tower. Short, 2-light traceried aisle windows. Steeply-pointed, 2-light clerestory windows to nave. W end of nave has 5-light Perpendicular-style traceried window and a moulded W doorway. Fine, tall, 4-stage tower with set-back buttresses with set-offs; string courses and corbelled, embattled, pierced parapet with corner pinnacles with crockets and lower, central pinnacles to each face. Tower has carved frieze below belfry and parapet. Distinctive, very tall pair of 2-light belfry openings to each face with pierced quatrefoils filling each light and ogival hoodmoulds with crockets. 3rd stage has 1-light cinquefoil-headed opening with square-headed hoodmould. INTERIOR: nave with deep arch-braced roof and quatrefoil piers and stained glass of 1875 by Powell. SUBSIDIARY FEATURES: iron railings and gates at west end of tower with an unpierced cast-iron frieze of foliage design. An uncleared graveyard on the S side with a good avenue of horse chestnuts lining the path through the churchyard. Graded for the fine tower, curiously evocative of Somerset tracery and a prominent landmark in the town, and for the forceful exterior composition by White.

Department of Environment, 22/06/1981, Barnstaple Borough - Fourth Amendment (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV88078.

Tower by Abbot and mackintosh 1843. Body rebuilt by White following collapse in 1868. Brief summary of architecture given.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV17562Monograph: Hoskins, W. G.. 1954. A New Survey of England: Devon. A New Survey of England: Devon. A5 Hardback. 329.
SDV336196Monograph: Pevsner, N.. 1952. The Buildings of England: North Devon. The Buildings of England: North Devon. Paperback Volume. 47.
SDV350785National Heritage List for England: English Heritage. 2013. National Heritage List for England. Historic Houses Register. Digital.
SDV350786Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2013. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #82483 ]
SDV70301Article in Serial: Chanter, J. F. + Reed, H.. 1907. Second Report of the Church Plate Committee. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 39. A5 Hardback. 116.
SDV88078List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Department of Environment. 22/06/1981. Barnstaple Borough - Fourth Amendment. Historic Houses Register. Unknown.
SDV91852Cartographic: Wood, J.. 1843. Plan of the Town of Barnstaple from Actual Survey. Unknown.
Linked images:1

Associated Monuments

MDV96312Related to: Parish Buildings to south-west of Holy Trinity Church, Barnstaple (Building)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Feb 15 2018 1:36PM