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Title:West Putford
Originator:Department of Environment
Summary:Church of St. Stephen. Parish church. Late c13-early c14. Subsequently refenestrated in parts, tower c1400, upper stage possibly c16 addition, floor tiles early c16, S door dated 1620, tower rebuilt using old masonry in 1883, chancel re-roofed and porch added late c19, church restored 1929-30, tower restored again c.1980 when the parapets were rebuilt and the roof and floors were relaid.1880s restoration by S. Hooper of Hatherleigh, 1920s restoration by Harbottle Reed. Coursed and roughly dressed local stone, remains of render on nave, slate roofs. Plan: chancel, N + S transepts, nave and W tower. Three stage unbuttressed, crenellated tower with plain pinnacles, 3-light w window with continuous hoodmould, W door with unusual stops to moulded, round-headed opening which, like the plank door, presumably dates from the 1880s restoration; nave buttressed at W end, 2-light trefoil-headed window to left of gabled porch, unmoulded arched opening with double wrought-iron gates, open ribbed barrel vault roof, holy water stoup in right jamb of chamfered arch opening, ribbed door dated 1620; 3-light cinquefoil-headed window under square hoodmould, c19 3 light E window, 3 light pointed arch window in wall of N transept, the lower portion of which has been blocked, 2-light cinquefoil-headed on N front of transept, N wall of nave unlit except for a tiny 2-light square-headed opening E of the blocked n door. Interior: rendered, exposed masonry in tower. No chancel arch, moulded tie beam to n transept with carved corbel in chancel wall, tie beam to s transept; tower arch tall and narrow, depressed pointed arched opening chamfered in 2 orders. Roofs: c19 scissorbrace roof to chancel, late medieval elsewhere; N transept, ribbed and plastered barrel vault with moulded wallplate, S transept plastered barrel vault with a section of moulded wallplate, nave ceiled and plastered wagon roof with moulded wallplate. Ogee-headed piscina in s transept; no rere arch to E window. Round headed doorway to roodstair in N transept, stair destroyed, evidence of niches in jambs of E window. Norman font of the girdle tub-type with cable moulding between bowl and plinth. Large number of encaustic tiles made in Barnstaple in early c16 with a variety of devices. C18 twisted baluster altar rails, pulpit composed of similar twisted balusters, possibly reworked. Painted royal coat of arms dated 1714. Altar table, choir stalls, benches and lectern early c20, a few remnants of the earlier bench ends survive. Good monument to the 2 wives of Anthony Gregory, rector, died 1681 and 1689; an oval tablet surrounded by cherubs' heads; good incised slate tomb slabs to Robert Mill, died 1711, with coat of arms, and to William Braund, died 1710; others to William Mill, died 1663 and Jno. Gifford, died 1788; Joan Short, died 1642, and an unidentified one with Gothic lettering. Fine collection of c18 and c19 slate headstones in churchyard. A rare example of a church that survived the c19 largely untouched and underwent a conservative restoration following SPAB principles in the early c20.

Associated Monuments (2)

MDV35120West Putford, Providence Chapel (Building)
MDV143West Putford, St. Stephen (Building)