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Review: All Saints' Church Bakewell

Attraction - Castles & places of worship

South Church Street, Bakewell , Derbyshire, DE45 1FD , United Kingdom

What to see inside the church

  • By SilverTraveller ESW

    2378 reviews

    Ribbon Ribbon Ribbon Ribbon Ribbon

  • August 2016
  • Solo

101 people found this review helpful

Bakewell church has a long history and there is much to see and admire. To keep the review manageable, I have split it into two parts. This just deals with the inside of the church and I have written a separate review covering its history and visiting.

Inside it is a big church with an arcade of pointed arches separating the nave and side aisles. On the pillars are small square modern Stations of the Cross. The C19th wood roof still has C14th carved bosses.

The oldest part of the church is the bottom of the west wall, with blocked Norman doorways which were intended to lead into the towers which were never built.

The lovely carved tub font just inside the south door is C14th. The carvings represent the Virgin Mary, St John the Evangelist, St Peter with the keys of heaven, St Paul, John the Baptist and unidentified bishop and priest.

On the wall by the entrance into the south transept (Newark) is a late C14th Foljambe monument, all that remains of the chantry chapel of Sir Godfrey and his wife Avena. He was a prominent landowner and politician, and was Lord Chief Justice of Ireland. Made of alabaster, it shows Sir Geoffrey and Avena as if they are looking out of a window. Beneath it are two aumbry cupboards which would have held books and vessels for the chapel.

High on the wall near it is a funeral shield with the Plantagenet arms which probably came from the funeral hearse of Sir John Manners who died in 1611, or his son Sir George.

In the north transept is the Chapel of St Michael & St George. The reredos of the crucifixion with the Virgin and St John is by Ninian Comper. Near it is the 1538 Churchwardens chest which was used to store valuables and parish records. It is now used for the Christmas decorations.

The chancel is separated from the nave by a lovely open carved C19th wood screen. The floor is also C19th and a mosaic design with fleur de lys, red roses and crosses.

The three seat sedilia and piscina are all that survive of the original church. The choir stalls are copies of medieval stalls with misericords but do reuse some of the medieval wood.

The chancel windows show the Resurrection and Communion of the Saints. Above the high altar is a carved marble frieze of the twelve apostles with their symbols. Above is a carved wood reredos of the crucifixion. As well as the grieving figures of the Marys, there are Roman soldiers on horseback and playing dice.

The Vernon Chapel in the Newark was originally a chantry chapel but after the Reformation became the funeral chapel of the Vernon and Manners family from nearby Haddon Hall.

It is separated from the rest of the Newark by a carved C14th screen. The roof was restored in August 2016 which may explain why the chapel still looked a bit like a dumping ground when I visited.

The oldest tomb predates the Vernons and is that of Sir Thomas Wendesley, in full armour who was killed in the Battle of Shrewsbury in 1403. Beyond is the splendid table tomb of Sir George Vernon who died in 1567 and his two wives Margaret and Maude. Next to this is a smaller tomb, that of John Manners, the third son of Sir John, who died in 1590. On the south wall is the memorial to Sir John Manners who died in 1611 and his wife Dorothy who was the daughter of Sir George. The tomb originally had the figures of their four children along the bottom, but two have been lost. On the north wall is the splendid memorial to their son, Sir George Manners who died in 1623 with his wife Grace. Below are their nine children, one of whom died in infancy.

There is more information and pictures here.

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This review is solely based on the opinion of a Silver Travel Advisor member and not of Silver Travel Advisor Ltd.

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