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HER Number:MDV2856
Name:St. Petroc's Church, Harford

Summary

Parish Church of St Petroc, Harford. Dates to at least 1500, but is probably earlier, as two of the churches bells were cast in Exeter in around 1400. Major restoration between 1875-9. Contains a number of commemorative features. Listed. Church guide suggests Christians worhsipped here from Saxon times.

Location

Grid Reference:SX 638 594
Map Sheet:SX65NW
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishHarford
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishHARFORD

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Church of England HER: 615549
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX65NW/24
  • Old Listed Building Ref (I)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • PARISH CHURCH (Constructed, XIV to XVI - 1400 AD to 1525 AD (Between))

Full description

Cotton, W., 1859, On the churches of Cornwood, Harford and Ermington (Unknown). SDV149935.

When William Cotton of Ivybridge described the church in 1859 he had found it in a very bad state of disrepair, with green mould struggling everywhere against the sickly whitewash. The benefactor for the 1879 restoration was James J. MacAndrew of Lukesland in Harford, with other subscribers.

Pengelly, W., 1876, Devonshire Gleanings from 'Notes and Queries', 714 (Article in Serial). SDV56474.

Worthy, C., 1889, Devonshire Parishes, 226-7 (Article in Serial). SDV338449.

Worthy visited the church in July 1875 and found it comprised a chancel; nave separated from a south aisle by an arcade of four bays supported upon slender, perpendicular columns; north transept; south porch (badly repaired; square-headed arch); low square tower at west end containing 3 bells. Tower staircase carried up in thickness of its north wall. Fine trefoiled piscina on south side of altar, and a good example of a Hagioscope or Squint from the east end of the aisle into the chancel.
The windows generally had very debased arches, and absence of tracery, save in the east and west ends of the structure, which had been neatly restored. The Priests’ Door opened into the aisle, at the east end of which a bracket, which had once supported an image, still remained. Many good bosses of foliage existed in fair preservation, and every rib of the cradle roof was carried into a twining leaf or stem. As aspersorium (holy water basin) on east side of the interior south door. West entrance blocked up. At the time of his visit, repairs had been going on some time.
Communion silver:
1. Communion cup, silver dated London 1773. Makers Wm. Holmes and Nicholas Dummee.
2. Paten, silver, Dublin 1782. Maker, Michael Horner.
3. Paten, silver, unmarked. Inscription in dotted letters "Let sacraments and prayer be more in fashion; we need not dout or feare of tolloration (sic). May 15 1687"
All three pieces are on loan to Buckland Abbey, where they are exhibited.

Baring Gould, S., 1900-1901, St. Petrock, 12 (Article in Serial). SDV19012.

Chanter, J. F., 1910, Christianity in Devon before AD 909, 491 (Article in Serial). SDV870.

Cresswell, B. F., 1912 / 1922, Notes on Devon Churches (Monograph). SDV6050.

Cresswell gives a full description of the building. She found on the south side of the chancel a square headed window which seems to have letters carved on the corbelling of the dripstone; much weathered but appear to be W H. This was taken by Cresswell to be the initials of Walter Hele, rector in 1521; but there was also William Hart, rector in 1633/4, who is understood to have rebuilt the rectory.
Tomb - altar-style; Thomas Willimas of Stowford, died 1566. Granite, with quatre-foil top and two brasses, one of which is an effigy of Thomas Williams. North side of chancel
Memorial tablet; bass: John and Anges Prideaux, dedicated by their son John Prideaux, Bishop of Worcester in 1639. Set in the south wall of the aisle. 0.77 by 0.52 metres.
Royal arms to King George II hangs over the south door of the church. Wood with painted coat-of-arms.

Barber, J., 1926-1927, Church Dedication, 267 (Article in Serial). SDV149940.

According to Dr. Oliver's monasticon, Harford Church is called St. Patricks in the will of the incumbent in 1537.

Masson Phillips, E. N., 1937, The Ancient Stone Crosses of Devon: Part I, 303 (Article in Serial). SDV240502.

Copeland, G. W., 1946, Fifteenth Annual Report of the Plymouth and District Branch, 99-113 (Article in Serial). SDV336106.

Small 15th century moorland church. Monuments to Thomas Williams and the Prideaux family.

Hoskins, W. G., 1954, A New Survey of England: Devon, 400 (Monograph). SDV17562.

Hoskins dates the present building to late 15th century or 16th century.

Corbould, P., 1968, The Monumental Brasses of Devon, 36 (Article in Serial). SDV84760.

An armoured brass to Thomas Williams, a speaker of the House of Commons, 1566. Last part of inscription reads "the comen peace he studied to preserve and true religion ever to maynteyne in place of justice where as he did serve and now in heaven with mightie jove doth raigne".

Hankin, C. F., 1977-1979, Harford Parish Checklist, 25/10/1979 (Worksheet). SDV149931.

Harford parish church, St. Petrock, sited 0.4 kilometres east of Harford Bridge (River Erme), on the edge of Dartmoor, due south of Tristis Rock a prominent rock outcrop, approximately 680 metres north of the church.
Important dates in the history of the building:
c. 1500-1525: church built; not confirmed (probable date of bells indicates this could have been as early as 1400.
1868: Restoration of the south porch.
1875-1879: Extensive restoration of the structure; new stone mullions in three-light windows in south wall.
1920-1921: Old pitch-pine pulpit and stalls sold to a poor parish in Wales for £30. Stained glass window in memory of the late J. J. MacAndrew put up in the east window of the chancel (Messrs. Powell and Sons, of London).
1931: Stained glass window in memory of Reverend C. R. Patey, in east window of south aisle.
1969: Further restoration of the interior of the church.
1977-78: The church is in a good state of repair. The tower continues to give trouble with damp and water penetration. The three-light windows, with plain glass, in the south wall have tracery to match that of the east window in the south aisle and that of the west window by the porch and also that of the west window in the tower. All windows are three-light with stone (granite) mullions.
25.10.1979: Noticed that a corner stone in the south wall of the tower is a block of granite 2.1 metres by 0.3 metres wide by 0.25 metres deep.
The church bells. In 1552 there were three bells when the inventory of church bells was made for Edward VI.
1. Tenor: recast in 1686 by Mordecai Cockey in Totnes. Has inscription “Thomas Williams Esquire Churchwarden 1686. Mordecai Cockey cast me in Totnes”. Diameter 0.9 metres. Note A sharp. This is the only bell now hanging in the tower and is rung for services.
2. Treble: believed to have been cast in Exeter c.1400. Has inscription “H D T E O I B A” – the meaning of which is not yet known. Diameter 0.7 metres, note probably F, but the bell is badly cracked. Stands on the floor of the church at the west end by the tower.
3. Second: cast at the same time as the treble. Has inscription “INNOMINE: PATRIS”. Diameter 0.8 metres; note C sharp. In 1963 the bell was given to St. Paul's Church, Efford, Plymouth, where it hangs in the bell-tower, but is now broken.
The old font; stone, but not local granite. Thought to be Saxon or very early English (Reverend Uran, 1905). Diameter external 0.6 metres, internal 0.4 metres, depth of basin 0.2 metres, height overall 0.6 metres. Stands on the floor of the church at the west end near the tower. Basin only, no pedestal.
Memorial slabs: slate; four slabs removed from the floor of the church in 1879 and now set up inside the tower against the north wall. Fifth slab - inside the church at west end. All slabs 17th century. (See worksheet for inscriptions)
(Hankin also attributes a parish records source at the Devon Records Office and information about the bells to the Chairman of the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers.)

Hankin, C. F., 1980, An Archaeological Check-List for Harford, 25/10/1979 (Un-published). SDV361875.

Harford parish church, St. Petrock, sited 0.4 kilometres east of Harford Bridge (River Erme), on the edge of Dartmoor, due south of Tristis Rock a prominent rock outcrop, approximately 680 metres north of the church.
Important dates in the history of the building:
c. 1500-1525: church built; not confirmed (probable date of bells indicates this could have been as early as 1400.
1868: Restoration of the south porch.
1875-1879: Extensive restoration of the structure; new stone mullions in three-light windows in south wall.
1920-1921: Old pitch-pine pulpit and stalls sold to a poor parish in Wales for £30. Stained glass window in memory of the late J. J. MacAndrew put up in the east window of the chancel (Messrs. Powell and Sons, of London).
1931: Stained glass window in memory of Reverend C. R. Patey, in east window of south aisle.
1969: Further restoration of the interior of the church.
1977-78: The church is in a good state of repair. The tower continues to give trouble with damp and water penetration. The three-light windows, with plain glass, in the south wall have tracery to match that of the east window in the south aisle and that of the west window by the porch and also that of the west window in the tower. All windows are three-light with stone (granite) mullions.
25.10.1979: Noticed that a corner stone in the south wall of the tower is a block of granite 2.1 metres by 0.3 metres wide by 0.25 metres deep.
The church bells. In 1552 there were three bells when the inventory of church bells was made for Edward VI.
1. Tenor: recast in 1686 by Mordecai Cockey in Totnes. Has inscription “Thomas Williams Esquire Churchwarden 1686. Mordecai Cockey cast me in Totnes”. Diameter 0.9 metres. Note A sharp. This is the only bell now hanging in the tower and is rung for services.
2. Treble: believed to have been cast in Exeter c.1400. Has inscription “H D T E O I B A” – the meaning of which is not yet known. Diameter 0.7 metres, note probably F, but the bell is badly cracked. Stands on the floor of the church at the west end by the tower.
3. Second: cast at the same time as the treble. Has inscription “INNOMINE: PATRIS”. Diameter 0.8 metres; note C sharp. In 1963 the bell was given to St. Paul's Church, Efford, Plymouth, where it hangs in the bell-tower, but is now broken.
The old font; stone, but not local granite. Thought to be Saxon or very early English (Reverend Uran, 1905). Diameter external 0.6 metres, internal 0.4 metres, depth of basin 0.2 metres, height overall 0.6 metres. Stands on the floor of the church at the west end near the tower. Basin only, no pedestal.
Memorial slabs: slate; four slabs removed from the floor of the church in 1879 and now set up inside the tower against the north wall. Fifth slab - inside the church at west end. All slabs 17th century. (See worksheet for inscriptions)
(Hankin also attributes a parish records source at the Devon Records Office and information about the bells to the Chairman of the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers.)

Howell, R., 1992, A Guide to Harford Parish Church (Pamphlet). SDV361765.

Church guide suggests Christians worhsipped here from Saxon times.

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

SX 65 NE HARFORD HARFORD 11/75 25-5-60 Church of St Petroc (formerly listed as Church of St Petrock), I
Parish Church. Circa late C15 to early C16. Granite, with rough granite ashlar west tower. Slate roofs. Comprises nave and chancel in one south aisle, north transept, west tower and south porch. Three-light Perpendicular windows to south aisle. North transept and east window of chancel. Moulded elliptical headed doorway at east end of aisle and moulded 4-centred with south doorway. Ashlar porch with marbled 4-centred arch with carved spandrels and label. Unbuttressed west tower in 2 stages, with battlements and obelisk pinnacles. Small one-light bell openings, west bell-opening has Y-tracery. Perpendicular west window and 2-centred arch west doorway. Slightly projecting north-west stair turret. Interior: ceiled wagon-roofs with carved ribs and bosses to nave, chancel and south aisle, transept roof is C19. Four bay arcade with wide 4-centred arches, moulded monolithic granite columns and moulded capitals. Similar 4-centred arch and piers to north transept. From south aisle to chancel. C19 and early C20 furnishings. Royal Arms of 1728. Simple stone tub front. Monuments. Tomb chest in chancel with quatrefoil panels and brass effigy on top of Thomas Williams (d 1566), Speaker of the House of Commons in 1563 and born at Stowford House qv. Monument to John Prideaux (d 1639) - painted wooden plaque with kneeling figures. John Prideaux was Rector of Exeter College, Oxford and Bishop of Worcester. He Was born at Stowford House qv. Brass to John and Agnes Prideaux, the parents of John Pridaeux.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV149931Worksheet: Hankin, C. F.. 1977-1979. Harford Parish Checklist. Parish Checklist. Digital. 25/10/1979.
SDV149935Unknown: Cotton, W.. 1859. On the churches of Cornwood, Harford and Ermington. Unknown.
SDV149940Article in Serial: Barber, J.. 1926-1927. Church Dedication. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 14. Unknown. 267.
SDV17562Monograph: Hoskins, W. G.. 1954. A New Survey of England: Devon. A New Survey of England: Devon. A5 Hardback. 400.
SDV19012Article in Serial: Baring Gould, S.. 1900-1901. St. Petrock. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 1. Unknown. 12.
SDV240502Article in Serial: Masson Phillips, E. N.. 1937. The Ancient Stone Crosses of Devon: Part I. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 69. A5 Hardback. 303.
SDV336106Article in Serial: Copeland, G. W.. 1946. Fifteenth Annual Report of the Plymouth and District Branch. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 78. A5 Hardback. 99-113.
SDV338449Article in Serial: Worthy, C.. 1889. Devonshire Parishes. Devonshire Parishes. 2. Unknown. 226-7.
SDV350785National Heritage List for England: English Heritage. 2013. National Heritage List for England. Historic Houses Register. Digital.
SDV361765Pamphlet: Howell, R.. 1992. A Guide to Harford Parish Church. Church Guide.
SDV361875Un-published: Hankin, C. F.. 1980. An Archaeological Check-List for Harford. Devon Archaeological Society Publication. 11. A4 Comb Bound. 25/10/1979.
SDV56474Article in Serial: Pengelly, W.. 1876. Devonshire Gleanings from 'Notes and Queries'. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 8. A5 Paperback. 714.
SDV6050Monograph: Cresswell, B. F.. 1912 / 1922. Notes on Devon Churches. Notes on Devon Churches, Deanery of Plymton. Unknown.
SDV84760Article in Serial: Corbould, P.. 1968. The Monumental Brasses of Devon. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 100. A5 Paperback. 36.
SDV870Article in Serial: Chanter, J. F.. 1910. Christianity in Devon before AD 909. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 42. A5 Hardback. 491.

Associated Monuments

MDV13086Related to: Altar tomb in Harford Churchyard (Monument)
MDV2852Related to: Lukesland, Harford (Building)
MDV13102Related to: School House, Harford (Building)

Associated Finds

  • FDV5422 - BELL (XIV to Unknown - 1400 AD)
  • FDV5421 - COMMEMORATIVE OBJECT (XVI to Unknown - 1566 AD)
  • FDV5423 - CHURCH PLATE (XVII to XVIII - 1680 AD to 1780 AD)

Associated Events: none recorded


Date Last Edited:Nov 29 2019 2:21PM