Historic Nottingham - Part 6 - St. Mary The Virgin
w/e 15 July 2007
All this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

We take a pause in our walk through historic Nottingham in this the sixth part of the series to see in a little more detail of the Mother Church of the City dedicated to St. Mary The Virgin. In 1797 a Samuel Booth married Sarah in this church and it was their son William who went on to found the Salvation Army.

In The Churchyard

The nave of the present church was built over an earlier twelfth century church that was demolished when the new building was completed in 1474. Since then the church has undergone several major restorations and in 1844 it only survived by a narrow margin at a public meeting, a vote calling for its demolition and the construction of a new church from scratch.
The Nave

The Lion and the Unicorn.The church did survive though and nineteenth century restorations were carried out by a number of notable people including among others, William Stretton, Sir Gilbert Scott, Bodley and Garner and Temple Moore. The roof of the nave, restored by Scott, has carved oak angels on the corbels. I had to look it up and if you too didn't know, a "corbel" is a "bracket projecting from the face of a wall used to support a cornice or arch". At the western end of the nave the centre aisle is flanked by a lion and a unicorn (right) that date from the eighteenth century and bear the arms of the City and Queen Anne.
The Choir

The Screen and Choir RoofThe stalls and Bishop's Throne in the Choir are also by Sir Gilbert Scott and date from 1871/72. The brass light fittings are of much more recent origin having been donated by the Friends of St. Mary's on Advent Sunday in 1996. The screen seen at a distance in the previous picture of the nave and also partly in the small image of the ceiling on the right is by Bodley and Garner dates from 1885. An interesting aside is that when the original medieval stalls were replaced, they were sold from a market stall to the organist of Sneinton Church where they can still be seen to this day. And you thought recycling was something new!
Chapel of the Holy Spirit

The Chapel of the Holy Spirit at the south east corner of the church was built in 1913 but the side windows incorporate fragments of medieval stained glass.
The South Transept

John de Tannersley's TombThere is also a large amount of stained glass in the South Transept. The window originally had plain glass to allow the light to flow in - a revolutionary idea at the time - but later generations preferred, quoting from the church guide, "to worship in an atmosphere of reverent gloom and filled the spaces with stained glass." The tomb below is that of John Samon, Mayor of Nottingham who died in 1416. This is balanced by a similar tomb in the North Transept (left) for John de Tannersley another Mayor who died in 1413. The picture above also shows the organ of 1973 by Marcussen of Denmark above the door to the Chapel of the Holy Spirit.
John de Tannersley

The South West GateWe leave the church by another door - that of the South Porch. The porch is of early fifteenth century construction with a stone roof and unusual pointed arch. The inner bronze doors of the porch by Henry Wilson (1905) pictured above, depict scenes from the life of Jesus Christ.

There are many more features in the church that I have not mentioned or pictured here such as the fifteenth century font and the seventeenth century Communion Table used during Puritan times but it is time to move on and we will resume our walk leaving the churchyard through the south west gate onto High Pavement where we will continue in Part 7.

Back To Part 5
 Historic Nottingham Index
 Forward to Part 7

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