Tuesday, June 09, 2009

All Saints, Brixworth: A great Saxon church

I have already shown you the former Brixworth workhouse, but the real purpose of my trip on Saturday was to photograph its remarkable Saxon church.

I came away rather defeated by the great bulk of the building, but here are some photos of it even so.

The Friends of Brixworth Church website describes it well:

All Saints' Church Brixworth is the largest surviving Anglo-Saxon building in this country. It stands majestically on its hilltop, a fascinating study for archaeologists, geologists and historians alike. The Church also has a unique appeal to the thousands of people worldwide who visit it every year, some having been several times before.

It has been in continuous use as a place of Christian worship since its foundation by the monks of Peterborough in circa 680 A.D. The building, though impressive today, once had porticus extending from the north and south sides of the nave. The former entrances to these side chambers can be seen today outlined by Roman brick arches on both sides of the nave.

At the west end of the church an external stair turret is one of only four similar ones to be found in England. The ring crypt around the apse at the east end is one of only three of this kind in Europe and is thought to have provided an ambulatory for pilgrims to glimpse a relic set in the wall of the apse.

No comments: