August 2011 and a long weekend out with the camera. I was staying at Brigstock near to Kettering but decided to go on a slightly circuitous route when travelling up on the Saturday morning. This involved taking in the churches at Brington, Molesworth and Bythorn before heading off in the vague direction of Brigstock by way of Raunds and Thrapston. This turned a cycle ride of 16 miles into a jouney in excess of 50 miles. There are times when I feel that I have crossed the line from English eccentricity to lunacy!
It was a nice ride to Brington, going through Great Gidding, Winwick and Old Weston on the way. The villages here are exquisite with the churches invariably being surrounded by thatched cottages. It was quiet and peaceful here and All Saints is to be found on raised ground, close to the most beautiful, beamed cottage, pictured bottom left of this page.
This was my first church of my four day trip and it was good to see All Saints open. The church here is a basic structure of chancel, nave, west tower and south porch. All Saints is aisleless and has no clerestory. There was no church mentioned here at the time of the Domesday Survey of 1086 but it was mentioned elsewhere as far back as 1178. This original structure had a chancel, which was re-built in the 13th century, and a nave, which was re-built around 1330. The west tower was added in 1370, with the south porch being built a few years later. The chancel was re-built again in the middle of the 15th century and the church was restored in 1868.
Four bells hang here, all of which are dated 1845 and being cast by Mears of Whitechapel. In 1842 the existing bells were in poor condition, with three of the four being cracked. Information on the internet is sketchy but I am assuming that Mears re-cast the exiting bells. I have not found any information on the founders of the existing four bells but what I have got is as follows...The first bell is inscribed "Moriendum est Omnibus" which I have translated as all will die or all must die. That cheered me up no end when that popped out of my on line translator! No information at all on the second bell. Bell three has the inscription Multi Vocati Pauci Electi which translates as Many Called Few Chosen. The final bell reads Annson Me Fecit or Annson made me.
Inside, all is peaceful and quiet. Walls are limewashed and it is bright and welcoming inside, the lack of aisles leaving a confined and homely feel to the place. The chancel arch here is beautiful. A lovely place to worship in I would imagine. Not much in the way of stained glass here but a few fragments of glass from the 14th century of thereabouts have been collated together. Nothing of any real interest in there, but nice to see it anyway.
The font dates from the 12th to 13th century and it stands on a plain 14th century base. To the west of the church is a small wall plaque commemorating those who lost their lives from 303rd Bombardment Group, who were stationed at nearby Molesworth airfield during the Second World War. To show that vandalism is not a purely modern day occurrence, the initials WN and AB are scratched in to the porch, along with a date of 1892.
Very little in the church grounds caught my eye, . It appears as if there has been a pretty substantial graveyard clearence here at some point and there is little of any real age or quality to comment on. Gravestones are scattered about, widely spaced, with the odd stone having fallen over completely.
Leaving All Saints and heading off towards neighbouring Molesweorth there are some good long range shots to be had. From a distance, the onlooker can really see how slender and elegant the spire is here. A really lovely piece of work, which was completed not too long before the Black Death would decimate the country.
This would go down as a very good start to my holiday, this being the first of 38 churches photographed on that trip. Back on the saddle and off to neighbouring Molesworth with its medieval wall paintings. This is a really nice area, and if you are in vicinity it is certainly worth a visit.