Saturday, 20 March 2010

Horley - but not as we know it

Last Saturday, on the way to Mum and Dad’s, I stopped at Wroxton near Banbury. While I was there I saw a sign post to Horley.

Horley in Oxfordshire is a small village with a magnificent church. Both church and village are built from the same golden Hornton stone - ironstone - which was once quarried locally and is now quarried at Edge Hill.

St Etheldreda’s Church tower is circa 1100, with two circa 1200 belfry windows. The Chancel is circa 1200.

The church is notable for its wall-paintings. Once a common feature in English churches, most have been lost over the centuries. There is a huge St Christopher on the wall of the north aisle and is one of the best examples of a St. Christopher wall painting in Britain. It was dated 1450.

There is a small painting thought to be St Zita on one of the pillars.

There are also medallions with the ubiquitous letter "T" near the rood screen which may relate to Thomas Becket (martyred 1170AD).

A truly wonderful church in a very picturesque village.

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