An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Essex, Volume 3, North East. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1922.
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47. KIRBY-LE-SOKEN. (F.c.)
(O.S. 6 in. xxxix. N.W.)
Kirby-le-Soken is a parish and small village 5 m. N. of Clacton.
(1). Parish Church of St. Michael stands in the village. The walls are of septaria and flint-rubble with limestone dressings. The roofs are tiled and lead-covered. The Chancel and North Aisle are probably of the 14th century; there was also a S. chapel at this period. The West Tower was added in the 15th century. The church was restored in the 19th century when the Nave was rebuilt, the chancel refaced and the South Chapel and Aisle built.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (24½ ft. by 14½ ft.) has a modern E. window. In the N. wall are two windows all modern except the splays and rear-arches; below them is a 14th century doorway with a two-centred head and a moulded label; it is now blocked. In the S. wall is a modern window and further W. a 14th-century segmental-pointed arch of one chamfered order opening into the S. chapel.
The North Aisle (6 ft. wide) has a much restored 14th-century E. window of two trefoiled light with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head with a moulded label. In the N. wall are two windows all modern except the 14th or 15th-century splays and rear-arches; between them is the 15th-century N. doorway with moulded and shafted jambs and two-centred arch with a moulded label and headstops.
The West Tower (13 ft. by 12 ft.) is of the 15th century and of three stages with a moulded and quatrefoiled plinth and an embattled parapet of chequer-work. The two-centred tower-arch is of two orders, the outer moulded and continuous and the inner chamfered; the responds have semi-octagonal attached shafts with moulded capitals and bases. The much restored W. window is of three cinquefoiled lights with tracery in a two-centred head with a moulded label and head-stops; the W. doorway has moulded and shafted jambs, moulded two-centred arch and label with headstops. The second stage has in the S. and W. walls a cinquefoiled light. The bell-chamber has in each wall a window of two cinquefoiled ogee lights with an embattled transom and tracery in a two-centred head with a moulded label and head-stops.
Fittings—Bells: five; 3rd by Miles Graye, 1641. Chest: In S. chapel—with iron bands and hasp, lid in two portions, 17th-century. Door: In doorway to turret of tower, modern and with strap-hinges, 15th-century. Niche: On external wall of N. aisle—with moulded jambs and two-centred head, 15th-century. Piscina: In chancel —double with pointed heads, round drains, 14th-century.
Condition—Good, much rebuilt.
(2). Inn, 150 yards N. of the church, is of two storeys with attics; the walls are timber-framed and faced with modern brick; the roofs are tiled. It was built probably late in the 16th century with a cross-wing at the W. end, but has been much altered. Inside the building are original exposed ceiling-beams and joists.
Condition—Good, much altered.
(3). Cottage, 150 yards W. of (2), is of two storeys, timber-framed and weather-boarded; the roofs are tiled. It was built probably in the 16th century and has a cross-wing at the W. end. Inside the building are exposed ceiling-beams and joists and an original doorway with a three-centred head.
(4). Sadler's Farm, house, at Kirby Cross, ¾ m. S.S.W. of the church, is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. It was built late in the 17th century and has an original chimney-stack with a raised panel on the S. side.
(5). Cottage, on N. side of road, nearly ½ m. W.N.W. of (4), is of one storey with attics; the roofs are thatched. It was built in the 17th century and has an original chimney-stack of two grouped diagonal shafts.
Condition—Good, much altered.
(6). Red Hills, S. of Skipper's Island, about 1 m. N.N.W. of the church.