Sunday, 26 June 2016

Hard of hearing yet warm of heart: A visit to St John Shottesbrooke

A remarkable double tomb runs the entire length of the north transept's wall

One can contrast St Michael Warfield (see the post PowerPoint in the Pulpit) with another church on which we called that day: St John situated in Shottesbrooke Park, now nurtured by the Landmark Trust and the Shottesbrooke estate. St John’s needle-like spire is visible for miles around.

The church is normally kept locked, but there are instructions on the door for obtaining the key. We followed directions that lead us to a row of cottages behind which an elderly, somewhat deaf, member of the estate was hard at work in the vegetable garden.  Speaking up clearly we was soon in possession of the key and access to a lovely church erected in 1337. This is a rare example of church built from scratch in the decorated style.   

Inside light pours in from all points of the compass to show a generous crossing and transept arches. AG Street restored the church in 1852 yet with a respectful hand.  The place was quite silent in the warm May sunshine, on a dusty table there were some sign of services held. We let ourselves out and returned the key to its warden.