Listed building grade 2*
Church of St James
0°47’48.4″N 4°00’25.3″W (enter these in your smartphone navigator)
At first glance Jacobstowe church looks like a pretty little church in a charming churchyard, which it is for sure, but it hides an extraordinary history.
Recent archeological excavations in the nave have a discovered a curved western wall dating back to quite probably 800 AD, based on style, and possibly even earlier. To find evidence of such an early stone built Saxon church here is ground breaking, and hauntingly exciting.
Meanwhile, the present church is mainly 15th century but has a good Norman south doorway with a later medieval door. On the side of the porch are some fine little carvings too.
A simple interior, with a footprint slowly and very slightly evolving over the ages but easy to work out. It is lovely.
There is a rugged Norman font, a fine 19th century memorial by the famous sculptor John Ternouth, and a good collection of floor tiles, including some fascinating medieval ones.
Top this with some delicate stained glass and this is a church well worth spending time in, especially considering its depth of history.
- West tower
- South porch
- Vestry on south side of chancel
- C12 origins
- Main fabric dates to C15
- Restored and extended in 1902 -3
- Stone rubble walls
- Granite ashlar to buttresses
- And upper stage of tower
- Gable ended slate roof
- 3 stage
- Crocketted pinnacles
- Diagonal buttresses
- Granite 4-centred west doorway
- Hollow and roll moulded
- Incised scroll stops
- Hoodmould has armorial shields in its labels
- C17 or earlier studded plank door
- Moulded cover strips
- Foliage carving in its head
- 3-light granite Perpendicular west window
SOUTH SIDE OF NAVE
- Another 2-light C17 mullion window
- And a 3-light cinquefoil-headed restored window to the west of it
- Restored C15 2-light cinquefoiled window to west of porch
- 3-light Perpendicular east window
- Above which, set into the wall, a carved stone seated figure
- Which may be Norman
- Vestry projects in small wing from south side of chancel
- Small single storey
- Crudely chamfered round arched doorway
NORTH SIDE OF NAVE
- C15 2-light mullion window
- 2-centred heads
- Restored 1 and 2-light window of similar style to either side
- C17 2-light mullion window between them
- Walls have C20 plaster
- Double chamfered roundheaded tower arch
- Simple wagon roof
- Ribs nave been renewed
- Decorative wooden arch inserted over the junction between nave and chancel
- The pulpit incorporates pieces of carved wood
- Believed to come from the medieval rood screen
- Simple square probably C12 tub font
- On central shaft set in square base
- Plain C12 south doorway
- Round head
- Hood mould
- C16 or C17 studded plank door
- Chamfered cover strips
- Roof is plastered
The church dates back to the C12 from which the south doorway and the font are the only recognisable feature although some of the fabric of the nave may also be similarly early.
There was evidently a major remodelling in the C15 when the tower was added.
In 1902-3 the church was restored, the chancel lengthened by 5 feet and the vestry probably added on its south side
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