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HER Number:MDV2732
Name:Clawton St. Leonard

Summary

Mainly an early 14th century building, altered in early 16th. There is a fine Norman font and other 12th century work in the chapel. The site of a church since at least 1088.

Location

Grid Reference:SX 348 992
Map Sheet:SX39NW
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishClawton
DistrictTorridge
Ecclesiastical ParishCLAWTON

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Church of England HER: 5060
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX39NW/503
  • Old Listed Building Ref (I): 90671

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • PARISH CHURCH (XI to XVIII - 1001 AD to 1800 AD (Between))

Full description

Harvey, H. H., 1938 - 1939, Pote Family, 174 (Article in Serial). SDV336554.

A 16th century memorial to John Pote of Gunnacott is in the floor of the vestry.


Harvey, H. H., 1939, Untitled Source (Unknown). SDV321017.


Alexander, J. J., 1940 - 1941, History of Clawton, 46-48 (Article in Serial). SDV336557.

Review of a book by Harvey with references to church and churchwardens' accounts. Other details: Plate.


Pevsner, N., 1952, The Buildings of England: North Devon, 71-72 (Monograph). SDV336196.

Fittings described include font, tiles, royal arms, church plate and monuments.


Hoskins, W. G., 1954, A New Survey of England: Devon, 369 (Monograph). SDV17562.

St. Leonard. Mainly an early 14th century building, altered in early 16th. There is a fine Norman font and other 12th century work in the chapel. Chancel and aisle roofs retain many carved bosses. In north aisle is a mural monument to Christopher Osmond of Fernhill (1631).


Keen, L., 1969, A Series of Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century Lead-Glazed Relief Tiles from North Devon, 144-170 (Article in Serial). SDV15342.

Keen notes the post-medieval relief tiles which are to be seen by the font in Clawton parish church.


Whittemore, P. J., 1974 - 1977, Fragments of Monumental Brasses, 132 (Article in Serial). SDV336555.

Monumental brass hanging on stall on north side of chancel bought by a former vicar in Oxford.


Department of Environment, 1986, Clawton, 11-12 (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV10457.

Parish church. Twelfth century chancel and font. Fourteenth century arcades and west tower, some late 15th-/early 16th century fenestration and roofs. Stone rubble with freestone dressings and slate roof. West tower, nave, chancel, north and south aisles, south west porch.
Decorated and Perpendicular styles. The original 12th century church was rebuilt in the 14th century, possibly with transepts, before the north and south aisles and west tower were added. The transept arches were probably rebuilt in the late 14th century. The chancel masonry is small pieces of stone brought to course, changes in masonry suggest that parts of the north wall have been rebuilt.
The chancel has a coped gable and kneelers with a 19th century 3-light Perpendicular window with a hoodmould and carved label stops. On the north side a round-headed 1-light 12th century window which may have been reset. On the south side a priest's doorway has a 2-
centred hollow-chamfered arch with quatrefoils in the spandrels, a moulded architrave and a relieving arch. To the left of the door a large blocked window under a relieving arch, to the right a 2-light 19th century Perpendicular style cusped square-headed window with a hoodmould below a relieving arch. The north aisle has coped gables with kneelers at ends, the north wall appears to have been rebuilt above the windows. The east window is a 2-light 19th century Perpendicular square-headed cusped window with a hoodmould, label stops and a relieving arch. Three 3-light circa late 15th/early 16th century 3-light windows on the north side are square-headed with cusped lights, hoodmoulds, label stops and relieving arches. The 2 easternmost windows have iron stanchions and saddle bars. A 2-centred arched doorway to the west is chamfered with diagonal stops, a hoodmould and label stops. The circa late 17th-/early 18th century door has wide planks and studs. On the south side the south aisle has a 2-light 19th century Perpendicular style cusped square-headed window with a hoodmould below a relieving arch. The 2 eastern windows in the aisle are similar to the north side windows with stanchions and saddle bars intact. The westernmost window is a 2-light probably 19th century square-headed cusped window with hoodmould, label stops, relieving arch and no stanchions or saddle bars. No west windows to either aisle. The south west porch has a coped gable and kneelers with a 19th century cross on the apex of the gable and a 1634 slate sundial above an unusually tall 4-centred arched doorway with hollow chamfered jambs decorated with ballflowers. The doorway has a hoodmould and label stops. The interior of the porch has an unceiled waggon roof, formerly ceiled with carved moulded ribs and 19th century replacement flat carved bosses and 19th century carved wallplates. One medieval boss survives with traces of ancient colour. The inner doorway is chamfered with a 2-centred arch. The 3-stage unbuttressed 14th century west tower has no string course below the battlementing and obelisk corner pinnacles on rectangular bases. The string courses at belfry and bellringers' stage continue round a grand polygonal battlemented stair turret in the centre of the south face which projects above the battlementing of the tower proper. The position of the stair turret is similar to Totnes and Harberton but earlier, and the details are unusual for the region with large run-out stops at the base and 2 slit windows alternating with 1 small quatrefoil window and 1 window at belfry stage consisting of 3 flamboyant mouchettes pierced in a roundel. The west doorway has a 2-centred arch with shallow moulding and a bead hoodmould and label stops below a relieving arch. A small shield and flower are carved on the mouldings of the doorway at the springing of the arch. A 3-light Decorated west window with geometric tracery is probably a 19th century replacement. The belfry opening on the west face is also geometric Decorated in style with 2 trefoil-headed lights below a quatrefoil. The window has a hoodmould, label stops and slate louvres. On the north side the belfry opening has 2 trefoil-headed lights with slate louvres below a square-headed hoodmould with label stops. On the east face the belfry opening is an arched uncusped 2-light window with a hoodmould and label stops. On the south side the position of the stair turret restricts the belfry opening to a 1-light trefoil-head window with slate louvres and a hoodmould with label stops. The east face of the tower has a small rectangular chamfered window at bellringers' stage.
Interior Chancel walls plastered, aisle walls half-plastered. The chancel/nave division is marked by the change in height between the chancel and nave roofs, with no chancel arch proper. Tall plain narrow tower arch. 4-bay north and south arcades, the easternmost bays on both sides polyphant with main and subsidiary shafts with mouldings between and capitals to the main shafts only. The south arch is 2-centred, the north arch 3-centred, Pevsner suggests that they may have been intended as transeptal arches. The 3 westernmost arches have octagonal freestone ashlar piers with double chamfered arches and brattished capitals. The nave roof is a circa late 19th century canted waggon with moulded ribs, carved bosses and wallplates. The north and south aisle roofs are largely Perpendicular open waggon roofs with carved ribs, bosses and wallplates, most of the bosses appear to be 19th century copies. The chancel roof is an open waggon, probably formerly ceiled, with carved ribs, bosses and 19th century wallplates, most of the bosses appear to be replacements. The chancel walls are whitewashed but the remains of a late 19th century pargetting scheme survives with 2 large angels and possibly St George killing a dragon and contemporary colour may exist below the whitewash. The decoration was the work of the Revd. G.D. Melhuish, (1891-97). Late 19th century timber reredos with dossall, the reredos consists of 5 crested panels with flamboyant tracery. A medieval piscina on the south side has a chamfered arch, the moulded projecting bowl is probably later. On the north side a 19th century moulded polyphant aumbrey has a hoodmould, label stops and a hollow-chamfered arch with ballflowers. Late 19th century mosaic floor to the chancel. A hagioscope between the south aisle and the chancel must have post-dated the roof loft stairs which still exist in a fragmentary form. Circa late 19th century 5-sided timber drum pulpit on a polyphant basehas panels of blind tracery above a frieze of quatrefoils, the polyphant base is also carved. The font is 12th century and probably polyphant with 2 orders of cable moulding round the bowl and a base decorated with 4 profile heads at the corners and ornament carved on 2 of the main surfaces of the base. The whole design is unusual and may be a reconstruction. The font is on a later square plinth on a platform of late medieval tiles of the Barnstaple type decorated with stylized swans, lions and fleur de lis. The benches in the nave are circa 1860s with shouldered ends and engaged shafts with some stiff leaf carving. Blind traceried motifs are carved on the ends. On the north wall an early 17th century plaster wall monument, painted white, commemorates the son of Christopher Osmond of Fernhill, died 1631. A reclining figure in relief is flanked by Ionic columns supporting a moulded cornice. Above the cornice a cartouche with armorial bearings is flanked by the figures of Peace and War. A mourner kneels at the feet of the reclining figure and there is a cartouche inscription panel above the figure. Below the plaster memorial a slate inscription panel is fixed to the wall commemorating Christopher Osmond, died 1631. The inscription is round the border with an outer border of fine strapwork and interlace, armorial bearings and a verse in the centre. On the north wall of the tower a large undated plaster Royal Arms. A small probably 16th century brass of a praying cleric is fixed to one of the choir stalls. A late 19th century east window showing the influence of the Morris Company appears to be contemporary with the reredos. Other details: LBS no 90671.


Cherry, B. + Pevsner, N., 1989, The Buildings of England: Devon, 267 (Monograph). SDV325629.


Blaylock, S. R. + Parker, R. W., 2000, Archaeological Recording at the Church of St Leonard, Clawton (Report - non-specific). SDV2082.

Archaeological recording was undertaken by Exeter Archaeology in 2000 during structural repairs to the tower. The tower was probably erected in a single phase in 14th century. The tower was repaired and altered in 19th century when the pinnacles were replaced with granite obelisks. Some rebuilding or refacing was undertaken in 1954. An 18th century document suggests the tower was hung with slates at that time but was just rendered by the early 19th century.


Wood, A., 2007, Archive for the Phase II Repairs to the Tower at the Church of St Leonard, Clawton, Holsworthy, Devon (Report - non-specific). SDV339248.

The Parochial Church Council of the Church of St Leonard, Clawton, Holsworthy, Devon have undertaken two phases of repairworks to the tower stonework and its roof, from 1998 to 2005, in collaboration with English Heritage and Andrew Wood Chartered Architect and Historic Buiding Consultant.


Humphreys, C. + Green, T., 2008, The Barn east of St. Leonards Church, Clawton, Devon. Results of a Desk-Based Assessment and Archaeological Building Survey (Report - Assessment). SDV344691.

It is evident from a charter of Judhael of Totnes, dating from 1088, that a church was here at that date, since a gift of tithes included the phrase "Likewise in Clavatone near to Churcheton". It is therefore quite possible that the site of the church is of pre-Conquest origin. Other details: 7.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV10457List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Department of Environment. 1986. Clawton. Historic Houses Register. A4 Spiral Bound. 11-12.
SDV15342Article in Serial: Keen, L.. 1969. A Series of Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century Lead-Glazed Relief Tiles from North Devon. Journal of the British Archaeological Association. 32. Photocopy + Digital. 144-170.
SDV17562Monograph: Hoskins, W. G.. 1954. A New Survey of England: Devon. A New Survey of England: Devon. A5 Hardback. 369.
SDV2082Report - non-specific: Blaylock, S. R. + Parker, R. W.. 2000. Archaeological Recording at the Church of St Leonard, Clawton. Exeter Archaeology Report. 00.52. A4 Stapled + Digital.
SDV321017Unknown: Harvey, H. H.. 1939. History of Clawton, Exeter. Unknown.
SDV325629Monograph: Cherry, B. + Pevsner, N.. 1989. The Buildings of England: Devon. The Buildings of England: Devon. Hardback Volume. 267.
SDV336196Monograph: Pevsner, N.. 1952. The Buildings of England: North Devon. The Buildings of England: North Devon. Paperback Volume. 71-72.
SDV336554Article in Serial: Harvey, H. H.. 1938 - 1939. Pote Family. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. Unknown. 174.
SDV336555Article in Serial: Whittemore, P. J.. 1974 - 1977. Fragments of Monumental Brasses. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. Unknown. 132.
SDV336557Article in Serial: Alexander, J. J.. 1940 - 1941. History of Clawton. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 21. Unknown. 46-48.
SDV339248Report - non-specific: Wood, A.. 2007. Archive for the Phase II Repairs to the Tower at the Church of St Leonard, Clawton, Holsworthy, Devon. Andrew Wood Chartered Architect Report. 0108. A4 Stapled + Digital.
SDV344691Report - Assessment: Humphreys, C. + Green, T.. 2008. The Barn east of St. Leonards Church, Clawton, Devon. Results of a Desk-Based Assessment and Archaeological Building Survey. Southwest Archaeology Report. 081015. A4 Stapled + Digital.

Associated Monuments

MDV65556Parent of: Clawton Church Bells (Find Spot)
MDV2733Parent of: Clawton Church Sundial (Building)
MDV2734Parent of: Clawton Font (Building)
MDV2736Parent of: Rood Screen, Clawton St. Leonard (Monument)
MDV2735Related to: Clawton Churchyard Cross (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4751 - Assessment and Survey of Barn east of St. Leonards Church, Clawton

Date Last Edited:Dec 7 2017 12:26PM