An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Huntingdonshire. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1926.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying and sponsored by English Heritage. All rights reserved.
35. GLATTON (B.c.).
(1). Parish Church of St. Nicholas stands in the middle of the village. The walls of the chancel are of modern ashlar in Ketton stone; the walls of the nave, N. vestry, N. transept and N. aisle are of cornbrash-rubble with some re-used Ketton and Barnack stone; the W. tower is of ashlar in Ketton and Barnack stone, and the S. aisle is of coursed Ketton and cornbrash-rubble; the dressings are of Ketton and Barnack stone and the roofs are covered with lead. The Nave arcades are of c. 1230–40 and the North Transept was added later in the 13th century. In the first half of the 14th century the Chancel and South Aisle were re-built. Late in the 15th century the chancel was for the most part again re-built and probably lengthened, the nave-arcades were heightened and the clearstorey added, and the upper part of the walls of the N. transept were re-built. Shortly afterwards the West Tower was added, the North Aisle was re-built and extended westwards and the S. aisle was also lengthened at the W. end and apparently widened at the same time, the old materials being re-used. Early in the 16th century the North Vestry was added and the rood-loft staircase inserted. The roof of the N. transept and aisles were renewed in 1701 and the whole building was restored in 1869.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (29 ft. by 15¾ ft.) has had most of the external walling refaced. The E. wall has a five-light window, modern, except for the late 15th-century moulded splays and rear-arch. In the N. wall is a slightly restored late 15th-century window of four cinque-foiled lights with tracery in a four-centred head with a moulded label; the splays and rear-arch are moulded and the former are carried down to form a seat; the N. doorway is of 16th-century date and has moulded jambs and a four-centred head. In the S. wall are three windows; the first is of four lights and is similar to the window in the N. wall; the second is of late 15th-century date and of three cinque-foiled lights with trefoiled spandrels in a four-centred head with a moulded label; the sill is stepped so as to leave undisturbed the head of the third and earlier 'low-side' window which is below; this window is of early 14th-century date and of two pointed lights with a pierced spandrel in a two-centred head with a moulded label and carved stops of a male head and a fleur-de-lis. The chancel-arch is of late 15th-century date and of two moulded orders, the outer dying on to the chamfered responds and the inner carried on attached semi-octagonal shafts with moulded capitals, but the bases to the shafts have been cut away by the insertion of modern steps.
The North Vestry (14¾ ft. by 8 ft.) is of early 16th-century date and has a moulded plinth and an embattled parapet with a moulded cornice on the E. wall below which is a frieze of quatre-foiled panels. It is vaulted in two bays with quadripartite vaulting (Plate 77) with moulded ribs springing from semi-octagonal moulded corbels and has rubble webbing. In the E. wall the N. bay has an original window of two trefoiled lights in a square head with a moulded label and in the S. bay is a doorway with chamfered jambs and two-centred head; both doorway and window have been repaired. In the N. wall is a blocked square-headed window and in the S. end of the W. wall is a round-headed doorway giving access to the rood-loft staircase.
The Nave (39 ft. by 17½ ft.) has a N. arcade of three bays of c. 1230–40 heightened and partly re-built in the 15th century. The arches are semi-circular and of two chamfered orders and the piers and responds are respectively circular and semi-circular with 15th-century moulded octagonal capitals and 13th-century moulded bases; the piers and the arches are partly of the 15th century. High up in the wall across the N.E. angle of the nave is an early 16th-century doorway to the rood-loft, with moulded jambs and two-centred head. The S. arcade is of the same dates and is generally similar to the N. arcade; the E. respond has a 13th-century capital and base, the first pier has a re-used 12th-century scalloped capital. The clearstorey is of late 15th-century date and is surmounted by an embattled parapet. It has in each wall a range of three windows, each of three cinque-foiled lights with vertical tracery in a four-centred head with a moulded label; externally a straight joint marks the meeting of the walls of the clearstorey with the N. and S. walls of the W. tower.
The North Transept (28 ft. by 16¾ ft.) is of late 13th-century date, but the walls were probably lowered and the embattled parapets added in the 15th century; there is an internal moulded string below the level of the windows. In the E. wall is an original window of two pointed lights with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head with a moulded label and mask-stops; further S. is a similar window now blocked but with the splays and head visible in the transept. Across the S.E. angle is an early 16th-century doorway to the rood-loft staircase; it has moulded jambs and a two-centred head. In the N. wall is an early 14th-century three-light window, the upper part of which has been re-built, probably in the 15th century; the side lights are trefoiled and narrower than the middle light which is cinque-foiled; it has a four-centred head with a moulded label; until comparatively recent years there was a doorway below the window. In the W. wall is a window of two cinque-foiled lights with a quatrefoil in a four-centred head with a moulded label and mask-stops; it is of 14th-century date, widened, and having had a new head inserted in the 15th century but with the old label re-used.
The North Aisle (11 ft. wide) has a moulded plinth and an embattled parapet continued round from the N. transept. In the N. wall are two late 15th-century windows, each of two cinque-foiled lights with a quatrefoil in a four-centred head with a moulded label; the late 15th-century N. doorway has moulded jambs and four-centred head with a moulded label. In the W. wall is a window similar to those in the N. wall.
The South Aisle (15¼ ft. wide) has a moulded plinth and a 15th-century embattled parapet, below which, on the S. and W. walls, is a 14th-century moulded string-course with small grotesque faces, a gargoyle and, on the W. wall, carved 'ball-flowers.' Below the windows are internal and external string-courses. In the E. wall is a restored early 14th-century window of three pointed lights with intersecting tracery in a two-centred head with a moulded label and head-stops, one of a woman wearing a wimple. In the S. wall are three early 14th-century windows each of two pointed lights with a pierced spandrel in a two-centred head with a moulded label; the labels to the first two windows have mask-stops; the S. doorway is of late 15th-century date; it has moulded jambs and a four-centred head with a moulded label; the third bay of the S. wall has been largely re-built. In the W. wall is an early 14th-century window of three pointed lights with intersecting tracery in a two-centred head with a moulded label and mask-stops. Across the aisle from the E. wall of the W. tower is a re-built early 14th-century arch, two-centred and of two chamfered orders; it springs off moulded corbels on plain responds, the corbel on the S. side is carved.
The West Tower (12½ ft. by 11½ ft.) is of late 15th- or early 16th-century date, and is in three stages (Plate 5) with a moulded plinth and an embattled parapet with a gargoyle in the middle of each face and a large heraldic beast, now much weathered (Plate 159), at each angle; above the plinth and below the parapet are bands of quatre-foiled panels. The tower-arch is two-centred and of two orders with a moulded label towards the nave; the outer order is moulded and continuous on the E. and dies on to the N. and S. walls of the tower on the W.; the inner order is chamfered and carried on semi-circular attached shafts with moulded semi-octagonal capitals and bases. The N. and S. walls are pierced by arches at the same level as those of the nave-arcade, but similar to the tower-arch in detail with two additional chamfered orders on the sides towards the aisles. Above each of these arches is a three-light clearstorey-window similar to and ranging with those of the nave. The W. doorway has deeply moulded jambs and a four-centred arch with traceried spandrels in a square head, formed by carrying round the doorway the top moulding of the plinth and the quatre-foiled panelling above it; over the head of the doorway is an embattled string-course. The large W. window is transomed and of two tiers of cinque-foiled lights with vertical tracery in a four-centred head with a moulded label, over which are traceried spandrels enclosed by an outer square label; the mullions of the window are mostly modern. The embattled parapet to the clearstorey is continued round the W. tower marking the division between the first and second stages and, above the W. window, it is panelled with quatrefoils. The second stage has in the E. wall a low doorway leading on to the roof of the nave; it has chamfered jambs and a two-centred head. In the W. wall is a four-light transomed window with the lower lights trefoiled and the upper lights cinque-foiled and with tracery in a four-centred arch with traceried spandrels in a square head with a moulded label with beast-head stops. The bell-chamber has in each wall a four-light transomed window similar to that in the W. wall of the stage below.
The Roof of the chancel is probably modern but incorporates some timbers of c. 1500. The 15th-century roof of the nave is of three bays with moulded tie-beams, curved hollow-chamfered bases, moulded purlins and wall-plates and short king-posts; the bays are each sub-divided into two by large moulded rafters and the wall-posts are carried on wood brackets, except those at the E. end which rest on stone corbels carved with grotesque figures. The roof to the N. transept is of c. 1700 and has cambered and chamfered tie-beams and chamfered ridge and purlins. The N. aisle has a pent-roof of c. 1700 with hollow-chamfered tie-beams and purlin and stop-chamfered rafters; one of the principal rafters is of early 16th-century date, re-used. The S. aisle has a pent-roof of c. 1700; the three easternmost bays have braced stop-chamfered tie-beams, purlins and wall-posts and the wall-plate on the N. side rests on an early 14th-century moulded string-course with mask-corbels at intervals; the string has been cut away in places for the insertion of wall-posts and the wall-posts at the E. and W. ends are carried on re-used mask-corbels; the westernmost bay is sub-divided by a chamfered tie-beam, braced at the S. end, and has three purlins, one of which is inscribed "R.N."; the main tie-beam is inscribed "IH 1701 S.C. W.K. W.M."
Fittings—Bells: four; 1st and 2nd (Plate 7) by Watts, 1595. Brackets: In chancel—in windows, in N. and S. walls, two, square, with chamfered corners and carved with grotesque heads (Plate 118), probably head-stops re-used, 14th-century. In nave—over chancel-arch, three, the two outer semi-octagonal and moulded with a carved rose at base; the middle one longer and carved with two roses flanking a square flower, late 15th-century. In N. transept—in E. wall, large and rectangular on plan, with shelf enriched with incised cheveron-ornament and vertical grooves and underside carved with crude conventional foliage in low relief; on plain corbel with spurred corners, and having mortice for dowel in middle of shelf; S. of above, large mask roof-corbel, re-set for use as bracket, 14th-century. At N. end, mask-corbel similar to above but smaller, 14th-century. Chest: In N. vestry— hutch-shaped with flat lid with moulded edge and front with two moulded panels with raised boss in middle of each, and shaped brackets under front lower rail, 17th-century. Communion Table: with turned legs, plain stretchers and top rail carved with Jacobean enrichment and supported on shaped brackets, mid 17th-century, slightly repaired. Door: To N. vestry—of oak, nail-studded, with four-centred head, hollow-chamfered vertical ribs and two shaped strap-hinges, 16th-century, with modern repairs. Font: modern bowl on octagonal stem with moulded angles, trefoil-panelled sides and moulded capping carved with paterae, moulded base and octagonal step with moulded edge, late 15th-century. Lockers: In chancel—in N. wall, rectangular, divided into two by mullion and rebated for doors, early 14th-century. In N. transept—in N. wall, two divided by stone partition, rectangular and rebated for doors, 14th-century. Monument: In chancel—on N. wall, with two semi-circular recesses with round heads and half-domed fluted soffits and flanked by detached Doric columns on moulded shelf supported on three shaped and fluted brackets; above columns shaped and scrolled pedestals supporting entablature; no inscription, mid 17th-century. Niches: In N. transept—in E. wall, small with head of half a four-centred arch. In N. vestry, in E. wall, with round head, 16th-century. Paintings: (Plate 155) In nave—across N.E. corner, of St. Mary Magdalene, with figure of the saint nimbed and wearing a black tunic and white cloak, standing beneath a canopy with right hand raised and holding in left hand a covered cup; back-ground powdered with crowned Ms painted in white, black and red and figure standing on lozengy field; drawing outlined in black and red and below inscription, now partly worn away, in mixed Lombardic and 'black-letter' "Sancta Maria Magdal . . . Intecede pr[o] nobis," late 15th- or early 16th-century; in S.E. corner, painting of Christ rising from the tomb; on return-wall, kneeling figure of a priest; figures in red line on red ground with figure of Christ undraped to the waist with hand across body and emerging from a rectangular moulded tomb, scrolls at side of praying figure, but with inscription obliterated, late 15th-century. Piscinae: In chancel—with two openings, each with chamfered jambs and trefoiled head and circular and sex-foiled drains respectively; the whole enclosed by moulded label carried round as rectangular frame, early 14th-century. In S. aisle—with chamfered jambs and trefoiled head, having shoulders cut away for a later shutter; octofoiled drain and internal string round S. aisle carried over head as label, early 14th-century. Plate: includes an inscribed cup of 1695. Recesses: In N. transept—in W. wall, two with chamfered jambs and segmental heads, southernmost recess partly built into. Screen: under chancel-arch— of five bays with wide doorway with two ogee trefoiled and sub-cusped arches, crocketed and finialed and with tracery above; side bays with double trefoiled arches under ogee crocketed and finialed head with tracery above; close lower part with sub-cusped trefoiled panels; bays divided by buttresses with moulded caps to middle opening and crocketed pinnacles to side bays, late 15th-century with considerable modern repairs. Seating: In nave, sixteen benches with thirty-one bench-ends moulded and with carved popey-heads of various design, including three heads—(a) bearded male head (Plate 154) in middle; (b) woman with square head-dress with caul; (c) woman bridled with stalks of foliage; three birds (Plate 154) with head of middle one missing; fourteen of the benches with original moulded top rails and eight with original seats; bases all modern; 15th-century. Incorporated in pew-fronts—bands of cusped panelling. Sedile: In chancel—sill of S.E. window, carried down to form stepped seat, 15th-century. Miscellanea: Fragments of worked stone from pre-existing church re-used in walling include, in nave—in external E. wall, and E. wall of clearstorey, several pieces of 'dog-tooth' ornament, 13th-century. In N. aisle—in W. wall, a stone with cheveron-ornament; in N.E. corner, part of moulded base of respond with three attached shafts, 13th-century. In S. aisle—in E. wall, fragment of diaper-work, 12th-century. In W. tower—part of deeply splayed window-jamb and sill; a portion of small circular shaft; portions of stone shaft with moulded base; miscellaneous portions of window-jambs and newel-posts; in sill of E. window in top stage of W. tower, portion of carved stone with double roll-border and part of semi-circular arcade in relief, possibly pre-Conquest. In Rectory garden, miscellaneous worked stones include part of a stoup; moulded string or label, moulded window-jamb, section of a respond, stair-newel, etc., 14th- or 15th-century.
The following monuments, unless otherwise described, are of the 17th century and of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled or thatched. Some of the buildings have original chimney-stacks, open fireplaces and exposed ceiling-beams.
(2). House, on the S. side of the road, 120 yards E. of the church, is of L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the E. and S. The house formerly extended further E. The timber-framing is exposed in all the walls.
(4). Addison Arms Inn (Plate 148) 120 yards S.S.E. of (3), is of two storeys with attics. It was built, of brick, c. 1700, and has bands between the storeys, plain pilasters, and shaped gables at the ends.
(6). House, on the E. side of the road, 100 yards N. of the church, is of L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the N. and E. The central chimney-stack is of stone and has two square shafts. A small barn adjoins the N. wing on the E.