(« back to home page)

English Church Architecture -

Suffolk.

 

WINSTON, St. Andrew (TM 180 616)     (October 2008)

(Bedrock:  Upper Cretaceous, Upper Chalk)

 

This is a pleasantly situated church but one that is architecturally disappointing.  It consists of just a chancel, a nave with S. porch, and an embattled but unbuttressed W. tower, but it is not the simplicity of the plan which is at fault but the excessive amount of patching and repair that has been required to all parts of the building, of various dates and materials (although especially of brick), all of which have had a deleterious effect.  Ordinarily the tower’s lack of buttressing would suggest a thirteenth century origin and, certainly, the bell-openings (except to the east) and some of the windows elsewhere, do indeed have Y-tracery.  (The others are variously reticulated or supermullioned.)  However, on closer inspection, at least one of these is now constructed in brick, and, in fact, almost nothing inspires real confidence here - not even the brick S. porch, of mixed bond and with so many later bricks inserted where the originals have flaked away, that even the century of its construction appears open to question. It is also of rather odd appearance, due to the polygonal buttresses that most closely resemble chimneys with their protruding cornices, three brick courses high.  The S. doorway, of moulded brick, consists of three orders and a hood-mould, and above, there are three rectangular niches and an attractive stepped gable.  Much less pleasing is the Victorian or later E. window to the chancel, with its curious stepped-up string course below and two tiers of mouchettes in the tracery of the outer lights in a design reminiscent of Henry Woodyer’s appalling aisle widows at Stratford St. Mary.  Inside the church there is no chancel arch and a brick arch to the tower.  The easternmost chancel window to the south has a dropped sill to act as a sedilia and there is a piscina beyond that.