Listed building grade 1
Church of St. Nicholas and St. Cyriac
50°15’02.3″N 3°43’03.8″W (enter these in your smartphone navigator)
Nowadays South Pool is an isolated place, but it would have been good trading position back in the day with sheltered access to the sea, fertile farmland and fine quarries.
The present church is mainly 15th century in a grand position on a hillside overlooking the pretty village.
The tower is built in the local style, tall and plain with dark slate stone. Plenty of original windows to admire too.
Inside it is light and spacious, a good space.
Down the nave is a very well-carved 15th century rood screen with original colouring. The wainscoting is painted with Renaissance decorations, probably added later in the 16th century. They either replaced saints’ images because of the Reformation, or were new paintings done under the political needs of the times.
In the chancel there is a a very nice Easter Sepulchre niches, built also as a tomb for a vicar. The effigy which it now contains seems to have been placed there later.
There’s another fine monument in the south chapel too.
Good medieval and later roofbosses as well, some lovely foliage ones as well as a Green Man or two and other fantastical creations.
Topping it off is some very impressive stained glass in the East Window and some enchanting 20th century glass around the church. The most charming surely has to be the window showing the village of South Pool.
A beautiful church in a beautiful landscape in a very pretty village.
- North and south aisles
- North and south transepts
- West tower
- South porch
- The earliest fabric appears to be the south porch and adjoining section of nave wall
- A general rebuild in the C15 when the tower, aisles and transepts were built
- Although those on the north side may pre-date the south aisle and transept
- Which have windows of the C16
- South aisle is smaller than the north one
- It stops short of the porch that obviously pre-dates it
- C19 or early C20 vestry added to north of chancel
- Slatestone rubble walls
- Gable ended slate roofs.
- 3 stage crenellated
- Crocketted pinnacles
- Set-back buttresses
- 5-sided stair turret on south side
- 2-light cinquefoiled belfry openings
SOUTH AISLE AND TRANSEPT
- Windows late debased Perpendicular style
- Segmental headed granite priest’s door,
- Shallow rectangular stair projection adjoining
- At the west end of the nave, beyond the porch is a tall narrow light
- With cinquefoiled head
- Lean to vestry against north chancel wall
- East chancel window is a complete restoration
- Decorated style
- South side of the chancel is a C15 2-light mullion window
- Cinquefoiled heads
- Large, gabled
- Plain rubble doorway
- 4-centred head and projecting imposts.
- C15 south doorway
- South Hams type
- 4-centred arch and roll moulding
- Granite 3-light Perpendicular window above
- North aisle and transept have similar windows
NAVE AND AISLES
- Internal walls plastered
- Apart from the tower wall
- 4-bay north arcade and 3-bay south arcade
- Both granite
- Pevsner A-type piers
- Moulded cup capitals
- Depressed 4-centred arches
- Similar arches to both transepts
- On moulded stone corbels
- Tall tower arch
- Double chamfered arch
- 5-sided jamb to either side
- Projecting imposts
- C12 tub font on short stem
- Crude carved decoration
- Good recessed C16 tomb on north wall of chancel
- Carved canopy above
- Panel of resurrection behind the tomb chest
- Latin inscription to Thomas Bryant
- Rector of South Pool and East Portlemouth
- Died circa 1540
- Large alabaster memorial to Leonard Darre and his wife Joan
- Died in 1615 and 1608
- Depicted kneeling with their 2 sons and 3 daughters behind them
- Either side of them is a Corinthian pillar supporting a flat canopy
- Probably Perpendicular ceiled wagon roof to nave and aisle
- Carved bosses to the nave
- 19th century keeled boarded wagon roof to the chancel
- With moulded ribs
- Good C15 rood screen
- Restored in 1952
- Coving was renewed to the outer sections
- Although missing at the centre
- Original colour survives on the central part
- Painted renaissance arabesque decoration to the panels
- Probably done in the C16
- Parclose screens, although restored, are well preserved
- Blocked square granite-framed light in side wall
- Now overlapped by south aisle
- Holy water stoup with pointed arch
- Possibly original south doorway
- Chamfered dressed stones with 2-centred arch
- Probably C17 studded plank door
- Moulded cover strips
- Fleur-de-lys strap hinges
C15 rebuild of early C14 church with some C16 remodelling
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