St. Giles, Camberwell Church Street, Camberwell
Also has an east window – designed in stained glass by John Ruskin, the legendary 19th-century art critic. And parts of the church were designed by Ninian Comper.
St. George the Martyr, Borough, Southwark – a classical facade, a church with many inscriptions commemorating early deaths (see Death and Memory) and two unusual images below.
St. Cyprian, Clarence Gate, Niniam Comper
Dated to 1902-3.
Things to look out for: the colourful screen with loft, completed in 1924 and more medieval in appearance than twentieth century. It is decorated on the north dado with saints. On the rood are the figures of the Crucifixion (Christ, his mother Mary and ST. John, with two Seraphim about).
Another medieval feature is the tympanum, marking a break in the roof between the nave and the chancel. Tympanums were large carved and sculpted areas of stone above the west front of cathedrals and some churches (such as Conques in south-west France). Here we see Christ in glory, displaying the five wounds and the 12 Apostles and St. John the Baptist behind. But unlike a carved tympanum, this is painted and lacks the common image of the Doom or Last Judgement.
Note too Comper’s characteristic trade mark sign, which is the date-mark of a strawberry plant. You can see this at the lower right-hand light of the east window, dedicated as a memorial to Caroline Maud James.
The Parish Church of St. Nicholas, Arundel
See the feature on the church (April 2016 – Protestant and Catholic Divide)
The re-building of the church after its Norman foundation went into disrepair during the middle ages, coincided with a College for secular priests being founded by Richard, the 4th Earl of Arundel. The area behind the grille, the Fitzalan chapel had been the chapel for the College. In 1544, as part of Henry VIII’s drive to be the Head of the English church, he abolished all monastic establishments including the college which he sold to Henry Fitzalan, the 12th earl of Arundel. At one time the chapel became a refuge for the Roundheads during the Civil War. The church was also subject to post-Oxford Movement reforms with some work being done by George Gilbert Scott.
The pulpit in the chapel is worth looking at (although nowadays you can only access the chapel through the Castle of Arundel). It was carved possibly by Francis Yvele, one architect of the re-built nave of Canterbury Cathedral.
See also the medieval wall paintings, remains of which are found in the north aisle which are remarkable given the history of the church, its Protestant history and the widespread destruction of medieval art at this time. Indeed the story of medieval art in England is the story of destruction, wrath, power and ‘what if’. The paintings over the north door include the seven deadly sins, the wheel of the seven corporal works of mercy and the seven deadly sins – very common themes in medieval iconography, offering us a flavour of their active imaginative thinking then. The Seven works of Mercy which originated in Matthew 25:36 can be seen as a kind of exhortation on how to live one’s temporary life before embarking on it proper with God in Heaven (that is, if you have carried out your works which include welcoming strangers, burying the dead, offering drink to the thirsty, clothes to the named, food to the hungry and then feeding the sick – not necessarily in any order of importance). Finally there are the faint remains of the Coronation of the Virgin with angels.
St. Michael in Lewes, High Street, Lewes and not far from the castle. Look out for the church (or is it the town clock?) clock jutting out onto the pavement.
The church was subjected to deterioration both during the Reformation and then the Puritan Revolution.
In the nineteenth century one Edgar Herman Cross (1877-1890) secured the character of the worship of the church to be more Anglo-Catholic than Protestant and indeed when I visited it did have the flavour of a Catholic church.
Of particular interest is a badly damaged brass, now on the north wall and hear the font. It shows a headless effigy of a knight, from c. 1340 and which maybe a member of the de Warenne family who lived in the castle here. There is also the superb sixteenth-century monument of Nicholas Pelham, kneeling with his wife Ann (Sackville) and their ten children on a plinth below.
The church will also be of particular interest to those who are interested in Thomas Paine, as in the author of The Rights of Man. In the marriage register for the church, dated to 1771, there is an entry recording his wedding to his second wife, Elizabeth Olive.