Monday, 17 January 2011

St Nicolas Church Newbury UK

Because of the demand from my followers for UK posts while I am here, I did promise I would do one a month.  I think I overstepped the mark last month with Christmas etc and did a few extras, but here is the first UK January post with what I thought was a beautiful church. 

St Nicolas (no "h" apparently!!!) Church was probably originally a chapel in the outlying village of Thatcham, close to what is now the  much larger town of Newbury. Very little now remains of the original Norman church on its new site, which is in the middle of Newbury, and the present structure is largely the 16th century church which replaced it. It is designed and built entirely in the Perpendicular style, ashlar (dressed stone)-faced inside and out. The work was completed over about 30 years, starting around 1500. On the wall above the tower arch is a carved angel figure bearing a scroll dated 1532, generally accepted as the date when the tower was completed.

There is evidence that the church was later used for other, non-religious, purposes during the English Civil War, both as a prison and a hospital after the Second Battle of Newbury in 1644. 

A walk around the outside is recommended in the church guide brochure: one is encouraged to look especially at the proportions and fine detail of the tower.  The two arched gateways facing east onto Bartholomew Street, built by Fuller White in 1770, are the earliest examples of Gothic Revival in Berkshire.

The tower, perhaps the finest architectural feature of the church, contains a ring of ten bells with a continuous history from 1532.

 As you look up from the centre of the nave you will see the window at the east end of the church (below) depicting the crucifixion of Christ.  On the left are the windows showing some of his miracles and on the right are some of the stories he told.


Octagonal stone font, by Henry Woodyer, presented in 1866.

Information with thanks to 'A Brief Guide For Visitors' issued by St Nicolas Church
For further information about the church see HERE
or their facebook page see HERE


62 comments:

  1. Oh these are lovely photos of St Nicolas. I try and visit as many as possible when I do my long distance walking in England but haven't visited this one (yet). Will add it to my list with gratitude.

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  2. I would love to have that gateway replicated at my house. Sadly it's probably both far too pretentious, and far too pricy! This is a beautiful church, Diane; thanks for the tour!

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  3. It's a beautiful old church. Almost like a walk back in time except for the car parked out front. Thanks for sharing some of the UK.

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  4. That is such a gorgeous church! I love it!

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  5. Stunning interiors! It is serendipitous that you post this cathedral now as tonight I begin watching the series "Pillars of the Earth" for the first time, based on the novel by the same name. It was heartbreaking reading the novel and going on the journey with the builders of the cathedrals in "those days". They left wonderful monuments to their ingenuity, design ability and beauty.

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  6. Beautiful place and post my friend, I really enjoy reading you, thanks for the walk and great pictures!

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  7. Merci de nous faire visiter ainsi les monuments anglais.Le génie des constructeurs d'églises et de cathédrales, fait toujours notre admiration!
    Bonne semaine !

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  8. Dolly this really was a lovely church. I only got to see it so well as Nigel's Aunt lived nearby and her funeral service was held there. We drive through Marlborough on a regular basis which has 3 large churches which all look interesting, we are always in a hurry so I never get to stop there! It would be a good town to spend a day in if you have not been there. Lots of interesting shops as well. Diane

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  9. Margie there is a pair of these gateways on the town side of the church. I had difficulty in taking photos as when I took them, there seemed to be an extra lot of traffic around and it needed to be taken from the other side of the road. Diane

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  10. Gaelyn I felt like going and finding the driver and asking them to move the car! I walked past the church several times over a couple of weeks and the car was there each time I had the camera with me!! Diane

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  11. Thanks Peggy for your comment, it was a lovely church. Diane

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  12. Joyful I read Pillars of the Earth just before Christmas, I think on your recommendation sometime last year. It was a fantastic book, thank you. I would also like to see the film. Diane

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  13. Pamela thank you for your kind comments, there are some lovely places here in the UK even if my heart is in France:) Not long now before I return :)))) Diane

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  14. Lucie, Je pense, qu'il n'y a rien de mieux que la cathédrale à Reims. C'est superbe. Voir http://lifeincharente.blogspot.com/search?q=reims Diane

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  15. Beautiful work, great pics and an interesting tour - I hope I'll have a lot to catch up on when I get back online again ... keep well Diane.

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  16. Thanks Graham hope you have a good trip, I will miss you. You comment about your mind being too young for your body, I know the feeling only too well :))) Drive and work safely. Take care, Diane

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  17. Great photos Diane. Before I had kids, I spent a lot of time working around Newbury and Thatcham. xxx

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  18. Hello and a belated Happy New Year :) so sorry I have been so lazy and late in visiting blogs. Love this post and I always love to visit churches, especially those amazing glasses. Have a fab week ahead..hugs/m

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  19. Hi Diane, it is nice occasionally to visit places you have not see for a while, hope you enjoyed the visit. Diane x

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  20. M.Kate and a happy New Year to you as well. I should have taken more photos of the windows as they were very beautiful. Diane

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  21. Wow, is that a magnificent tower! The stained glass windows are also lovely.

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  22. Faith as I said earlier I am sorry that I did not take more pictures of the beautiful windows but.... Diane

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  23. This is unusually large size for a parish church! Just love its Perpendicular Gothic architectural style! The beautiful stained glass windows must be Victorian. Remarkable indeed! Thanks for this wonderful tour Diane!

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  24. I am just crazy about that door and entry arch... how remarkable... you find so many gorgeous places, don't you, Diane?

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  25. Wow such a gorgeous details on every part of this church. Great shots Diane!

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  26. What a fabulous church. The architecture back then was amazing; nothing compares to it now for sure. The door is magnificent and I can only imagine how large and heavy it is.

    I love, love your header. It's just like a great door, always wondering what is beyond. I set it as my desktop pic on my laptop. Hope that's OK with you. Have a great day, Diane!

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  27. michelangelo in the kitchen, the architecture is superb as are the stained glass windows. It was well worth visiting. Diane

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  28. lostpastremembered, I don't really go our looking for them, they just happen to be in my line of vision as I go to different places :-) Nigel's aunt had her funeral service here.

    I have to admit in France I go looking for places of interest! They are not hard to find though :-))Diane

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  29. chubskulit, you are right the detail and workmanship is magnificent. Diane

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  30. Fabulous windows! After your photos, Diane, I start to dream of visiting all these places. They are unique. You have captured them beautifully.

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  31. What a beautiful church. The interior is really lovely and the doors at the entrance are unique in my experience. I hope you are having a great day. Blessings...Mary

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  32. Pam no problem with the picture on your desktop, I am honoured :)

    I agree the workmanship today, generally does not compare with yester years. Even clothes I bought years ago will not wear out, where the clothes I buy today last only a short time!!! Diane

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  33. Olga as an artist you wouold love these windows here, they are quite beautiful. I hope you get to visit some time. Diane

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  34. Mary thanks for your lovely comments, it is a church I am sure you would enjoy. Diane

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  35. Diane,
    Thank you very much for your visit to Saint Nicholas, a tour and your lovely photos.
    Greetings
    Magda

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  36. Beautiful. I love the architectural detail inside the church. Thanks for sharing pieces of the UK.

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  37. Thanks for your comment the other day Diane. No nothings wrong here, it's just that I don't have an inclination to blog at the mo! Hopefully that will come back soon :-)

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  38. What a lovely church and not too far from me at all. I shall make some time to visit in the Spring. Lovely! :-)

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  39. It's so beautiful inside and out. The top composition is fantastic.

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  40. Greetings Magda. Thanks for your kind comments, hope to see you back again sometime. Diane

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  41. Becca it is a pleasure to share with you. Hope all is well with you. Diane x

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  42. Jan thanks for letting me know that you are OK. I think one needs a break from time to time :) Look forward to your return when you feel up to it. Take care Diane

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  43. Happy Frog and I, it is worth a visit as you say you are quite close. Note that the doors at the side are always open, the office is opposite them. I asked about taking photos and they said only a pleasure. Diane

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  44. JM I also am very fond of that top photo, it turned out perfect so far as I am concerned. Diane

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  45. I love the contrast to the church in France from the previous post. Both beautiful in their own way.
    I need to spend more time traveling through the UK. There are so many wonderful looking places!

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  46. Magnificent church in deed!
    The door is gorgeous!
    So are the stained glass pictures!
    i have to say it's been quite a while since I entered a church but this one is really inviting!
    Keep well, Diane!!

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  47. You guys have the most amazing architecture... what a beautiful church.

    P.S. I love, love, love your header!

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  48. Chez Loulou yes they are beautiful in there own way, but remember one was in a very small village while the other is in a large town. I have had my eyes opened this year back in the UK simply because of the blog and carrying my camera around :) Diane

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  49. Noushka I just love the architecture of the old buildings here which are quite different to France. I love French architecture as well though and it is interesting to compare them. Take care. Diane

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  50. Thanks Pam, I also love my header, it is going to be difficult to come up with one as good to replace it in spring :) Diane

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  51. Diane, thanks for sharing such beauuuutiful post! The first picture is absolutely breathtaking.
    Hope you're having a wonderful day.
    Cheers, Kristy

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  52. Ciao Dianne, all the best for 2011.
    I am back at last catching up on all the posts I missed while I was away from computing while on an extended trip to the UK. I really missed my blogging buddies while I was absent from the blogsphere so have enjoyed catching up with your posts this afternoon. Uk, France, Snow, Doors, Christmas etc, loved it all but was sorry to hear you were feeling unwell for awhile.

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  53. Hi - I'm one of the ministers at St Nicolas' Church. Thanks for all your kind comments - there is some more detail on the architecture on our website: www.st-nicolas-newbury.org and you can also keep up to date with we are doing at our Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/stnicolasnewbury

    The church is open during the week and you would all be very welcome to visit!

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  54. Kristy thanks for your kind comments, I also loved that first photo, the river just made it something special in the middle of the town. Tka e care, Diane

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  55. Hi Lindy it is good to have you back. We also wish you all the very best for 2011. Yep it was not much fun over Christmas with Nigel not being at all well. I recovered fairly quickly but sadly Christmas day was not the best:(
    Hope your Christmas was better than ours! Diane

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  56. minorbob, thank you for your comments. I have added the links that you have given me to the web page. Hopefully people will follow these for further information. Take care, blessings, Diane

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  57. So neat because I'm soon going to start posting St. Nicholas churches around the world! May I use your photo? I will of course give you the credit and let you know when I post!!
    Beautiful church!
    Blessings!
    Ann

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  58. Ann with pleasure you can use my photos. I enjoyed doing this post but was sorry that I did not take more photos of the stained glass windows. Take care Diane

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  59. Diane this is such a beautiful church, I love your photos. I'm so glad you are doing some posts from the UK. Thanks for sharing it with us!

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  60. Lyndsey this church is quite special, or I though so. I will try to do a couple more UK posts at least before I leave. Diane

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  61. Too bad!!
    I've really tried to make it easier to understand. This sequence relates to everything in nature and it took me weeks to compile it in the most simple way to explain what is at the heart of what's around us!!!
    As one of my readers said: "If I'd had this kind of explanation in school I would have been very good in maths"!!!
    I believe it's never too late learn, that is what "human" means versus "animal"!! LOL!!!
    Have a great day, Diane!

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  62. Sorry Natasha :) I will look at it again when my brain is more functional. I switch off at the weekends as much as possible and I then need winding up again LOL. I was good at maths at school but that was 50 years ago!!! Diane xx

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