It was bitterly cold inside the church. Still and peaceful. Each generation seemed to have added or taken away from the stone, the wood and the glass.
Above is the thirteenth century porch. The original medieval statue above the door has been replaced by a stained glass window depicting St Nicholas, patron saint of sailors. Inside the porch are momentos of HMS Hood.
Below, are the only remaining Norman arches and their piers.
The wooden Family Pews are evidence of past residents from the many grand houses and wealthy families in this parish. There was once a segregated Servants Gallery where humbler folk were admitted to worship.
In a corner of the North Chapel, is the simple and moving Memorial to HMS Hood. Under a bright window, is the illuminated Book of Remembrance.
On the wall is a painting of HMS Hood, by the marine artist Montague Dawson (1899-1973).
There have been several changes to the stained glass windows over the centuries. The East Window, behind the altar, is a modern depiction (1964) of Christ in Glory, by Alan Younger.
The Victorian West Window, above the old West Door, Depicts Faith, Hope and Charity.
The Bradley Window ( 1956), below, in the North Chapel, replaced an earlier Victorian window.
A closer look at the East Window.
The beautiful, almost Pre Raphaelite West Window (1884), is entitled Come Unto Me. It was designed by Curtis, Ward and Hughes as a memorial to parishoners Louise and Sidney Read.
The contemporary and stunning Millennium Window was designed and engraved by Tracey Sheppard FGE. It commemorates the year 2000 and "shows the church within its rural setting with trees, the river and various flora and fauna, each having a symbolic meaning". A frosted vision of the Forest set in glass, against the cold evening sky and bare trees in the lane beyond the church.
Refs: Information plaques within the church plus the PCC Guidebook, as mentioned in my last post.