A History of the County of Bedford: Volume 3. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1912.
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PODINGTON with HINWICK
The parish of Podington with Farndish includes 3,515 acres, of which 1,103 are arable land and 1,488¾ permanent grass. (fn. 1) The slope of the ground is from south to north; the highest point above ordnance datum is 346 ft. in the south. The parish is well wooded in the south, containing 241¾ acres. (fn. 2) The principal woods are Great Hayes, Little Hayes, New Gorerong Wood, Old Gorerong Wood, Hungerhill and Ransil Spinneys, Longley and Slade Plantations.
The parish is watered by a small brook, which rises above the village of Hinwick in the south-west, and over which is a stone bridge built by Mr. Orlebar in 1779. (fn. 3) The soil is loam, subsoil, clay and limestone rock in places. The chief crops are wheat and pasture. There are three roads in this parish. The first forms the western boundary of Podington; the second enters the parish from Wymington in the north-east, and, passing through Podington village and Hinwick hamlet, joins the first road in the south-west. The third road, known as Forty Foot Lane, a fine old grass road with wild and luxuriant hedges, forms the southern boundary.
The village of Podington is small and picturesque, being practically untouched by the modern builder. It is situated towards the north-east of the parish. Beyond the manor-house, on the north side of the village, is Podington Church, standing on high ground. Opposite the church are two blocks of stone cottages, one dated 1750 and the other 1773. By the side of the church, standing back from the road, is Church Farm, a stone building containing some oak panelling and doors, probably of the early part of the 17th century. Park House Farm stands back in a farmyard on the south side of the small by-road which runs westward off the main road and forms the northern boundary of the village of Hinwick. It is a two-story farm-house built of stone, and apparently added to at different times. The oldest portion is that at the south-west corner, which has the date 1597 carved on its west gable. The first addition was the extension of the block eastward, the date 1704 in a similar position on the north gable of this block no doubt being the year of the enlargement, while in 1795 another wing was built out from the original building, this time northwards. The roofs of the earlier buildings are tiled, but the more recent extension is thatched. All the windows are modern and the chimneys have been raised in red brick. Built into the north gable of the north-west extension, besides a stone incised O. B./1795' are a 14th-century crocketed canopy head and a small crocketed ogee-panelled head; in the east wall are one or two other fragments of Gothic masonry. These are said, on good authority, to have come—together with other pieces of mediaeval stonework which may be seen in some of the walls about the hamlet and the village at Podington— from the church at Banbury when it was pulled down, Mr. Orlebar, grandfather of the present head of the family, having bought a cartload of the material from the old church at the time of its demolition at the end of the 18th century.
The hamlet of Hinwick, about a mile from Podington, contains several interesting houses. Hinwick House stands in its own park of about 32 acres on the west side of the road from Podington and to the south off the Wollaston Road. It is from the latter road that the house is approached along a drive, at the end of which are some good wrought-iron gates with stone piers surmounted by collared eagles' heads with wings displayed, the crest of the Orlebar family. It is the property of Mr. Richard Rouse Boughton Orlebar.
The house is of three stories, with the entrance front facing the east. At the back is a smaller house, now used as the Sanatorium and known as the Turret. This is the oldest block in the group of buildings, and probably dates from the 17th century. It was a low T-shaped building, two stories high, with dormers in the roof. It is built of stone and roofed with Collyweston slates, but at the time of the erection of the main house in 1710 a small square addition surmounted by an hexagonal turret was made on the east side, from whence the building takes its name. On the east front the tower is open to the height of the floor of the top story, and inside it is curved in plan with a double staircase leading up out of the garden to the first floor, at which level is an effective little wooden balustrade, while on the wall over, which is carried on a wooden beam, is a clock face, on which are carved the letters O.R. and the date 1710.
The larger house is [shaped like a square-cornered capital C, rotated 90 degrees anti-clockwise] and three stories high with a flat roof. In the centre of the east front, entered directly from the garden, is the hall, elaborately panelled, behind which is the inner hall. Out of the inner hall rises the staircase, a fine piece of 18th-century joinery work, with delicately turned balusters and moulded hand-rail.
On the north is the dining-room and on the south is the drawing-room. Several of the bedrooms are panelled, and one or two have good fireplaces. The entrance or east front is divided into three bays by four Corinthian pilasters, over which the cornice breaks, while from the cornice are carried up to the top of the balustrade, immediately over these pilasters, smaller ones of the Doric order. The level of the first floor is masked by a projecting string. At the sides of the entrance doorway are panelled pilasters with carved brackets supporting a cornice, above which is a cartouche carved with the arms of Orlebar impaling Astrey set within a broken pediment.
At the west angle of the south front is a Corinthian pilaster corresponding to the south angle pilaster to the front façade, while above the cornices is a triangular pediment, the tympanum of which is carved with a scene representing Diana hunting, a compliment paid by Richard Orlebar, who erected the house, to his wife Diana.
The interest of the west front, which faces the turret, is enhanced by the projecting wings on the north and south. The north elevation is now blocked up to the level of the second floor by the modern addition.
The grounds are well wooded and undulating. A small rise in the ground to the south-west of the buildings possibly marks the site of some early stone structure. It is known as Chapel Hill, and rubblework has been unearthed while digging here.
The Slade House, Hinwick, is occupied by Mr. Richard Orlebar. It is a small two-story farmhouse, standing in the centre of the village on the north side of the glade. It is built of local stone, and the oldest part of the house is roofed with Collyweston slates. The original building, probably erected towards the end of the 16th century, occupies the south-east corner of the present house, and consisted of two rooms, separated by a passage from which a stone flight of steps led down to a cellar under the westernmost room, while above these steps there was undoubtedly a staircase up to the first floor. The kitchen, or easternmost room, has been lowered and converted into the drawing-room, while the other room is now used as a study. The house was enlarged about forty years ago, when the dining-room, kitchen and offices were added on the west and a corridor along the north of the old external wall. In 1906 another staircase was built rising out of the corridor, in which were used several 18th century balusters that were taken from Hinwick House. Over the fireplace in the drawing-room is a piece of oak carved with the date 1597. It is, however, not in situ, having been taken from an old beam that was found in a cellar at Podington.
In the 18th century the making of thread-lace employed most of the women and children in this parish, whose health was declared to be 'considerably impaired thereby, from their uneasy and confined position.' (fn. 4) There is still a small manufacture of lace carried on here.
About 1840 a small bronze figure of a soldier in armour, complete with helmet, supposed to be Roman, was ploughed up in a field near Hinwick, called Bellum. The man's legs are apart, as if the figure of a horse had been between them. It is about 3 in. in height, and is in the possession of Mr. R. R. B. Orlebar. About the same time a small earthenware urn, supposed to be of the ancient British period, was ploughed out from a small heap of stones in a field called Great Close, near the Farndish boundary. It was much broken by the plough, but a fragment of it about 6 or 7 in. in diameter was for a long time in the possession of Mr. R. R. B. Orlebar.
Local legend avers that a field, still called Church Close, fully half a mile from Podington Church, was so called because it was intended to build the church there, but the devil used to come by night and remove the stones to their present site In the same field is a small petrifying spring.
Podington was inclosed by Act of Parliament in 1765, when allotments were assigned to the impropriator and vicar in lieu of tithes. (fn. 5)
The following place-names have been found in documents relating to this parish—Cochul, Wlnodescroft (from the Old English Wulfnoth), Wrongelond (xiii cent.), Little Gorewrong, Moore Barrow, Spout Close, Welsick Close (xvii cent.), Calwell (xviii cent.). Syr Pers occurs as the name of a parcel of land belonging to Podington Manor in the 16th century.
In 1086 three tenants, holding in all 4½ hides, are mentioned in Podington, whilst Hinwick, later attached to Podington as a hamlet, had six tenants assessed at the much higher rate of 8 hides. Of the estates in Podington in 1086 Hugh the Fleming, whose family assumed the name la Leye, held 2 hides 1 virgate in Podington in chief, and 1 hide 3 virgates, called a manor, in the same parish of his brother Walter. (fn. 6) These 4 hides became later known as PODINGTON MANOR, attached to the honour of Wahull (q.v.). As in Thurleigh (q.v.), the la Leyes were early holders. (fn. 7) The Testa states that the Lady Emma de Podington held the whole vill from John de Grey, (fn. 8) which in 1278 had passed to Reginald de Grey, who held 1½ fees here of John de Wahull, rendering 11s. towards the ward of Rockingham Castle. The manor then included 3 carucates in demesne, a windmill and 11¼ virgates (fn. 9) held in villeinage, the villeins being unable to marry without the consent of the lord. (fn. 10) Like Wrest Manor (q.v.) Podington continued to be held by the Grey family until 1524–5, (fn. 11) in which year it was conveyed by Sir Henry Grey, kt., to Richard Wingfield and others, apparently acting for the Crown, in whose possession this and many other manors alienated at the same time are subsequently found. (fn. 12) It remained Crown property for some years, and was leased to William Annesley for twenty-one years in 1539. (fn. 13) When the honour of Ampthill was formed in 1541, (fn. 14) Podington Manor was annexed, and was granted in 1557 to George Bredyman, one of the grooms of the Privy Chamber. (fn. 15)
George Bredyman died in 1581 seised of the site of Podington Manor, (fn. 16) leaving a son Edmund Bredyman, who in 1585 transferred it to Thomas Southwell, (fn. 17) apparently as trustee, for in the same year he conveyed the manor to Thomas and William Payne, (fn. 18) to whom Edmund Bredyman eventually quitclaimed it in 1594. (fn. 19) William Payne held it till his death in 1624, when his heir was his niece Sybil daughter of his brother Francis and wife of Sir Christopher Yelverton. (fn. 20) She died the same year, leaving a son Henry, aged ten days, (fn. 21) who only survived until 1628, when his second cousin Richard Child (fn. 22) succeeded to the Podington estate. (fn. 23) Richard Child died in 1647, and Margaret, his daughter and sole heir, who had married George Orlebar, brought the Podington and Hinwick estates to that family. (fn. 24)
George Orlebar died in 1666, (fn. 25) and was succeeded by his son George, who married Ursula daughter of William Boteler of Biddenham. (fn. 26) Richard Orlebar, their grandson, who held this property in 1694, (fn. 27) in which year he suffered a recovery, built Hinwick House, which was thenceforward the residence of the family, the old manorhouse of Podington becoming a farm-house. He was high sheriff for the county in 1720, and died without issue in 1733, (fn. 28) when the Podington and Hinwick property passed to his cousin John Orlebar. He held the manor till his death in 1765, (fn. 29) when his son Richard Orlebar succeeded, and from that time the property has descended in an unbroken line from father to son, the present owner being Mr. Richard Rouse Boughton Orlebar. (fn. 30)
The old manor-house, now a farm, stands on the north side of the village. It is an early 17th-century stone building with a roof of stone tiles, All the windows and doors and interior fittings are modern. One of the three chimneys is old. By the side of the farm is a stone barn with a gable dated 1787. In the field at the back is a moat encircling a large mound, on which, after heavy rain, water can be heard dropping into a well.
In 1086 Turstin the Chamberlain held 1 hide 3 virgates of land in Hinwick, which later became known as HINWICK MANOR or HINWICK HALL, and had formerly belonged to Godwin Frambolt, a thegn. (fn. 31) Until the 17th century this manor followed the same descent as that which Turstin held in Pavenham (q.v.), (fn. 32) and, like that estate, became part of the barony of Bedford. It is first called a manor in 1269, when, besides the 1 hide 3 virgates of the Survey, it included a messuage with garden, buildings, and dove-house. (fn. 33)
John de Pabenham received a grant of free warren in Hinwick in 1312. (fn. 34) From the Pabenhams Hinwick passed by marriage to the Tyringhams, but it is not until 1636 that its history diverges from that of Pavenham. Sir Thomas Tyringham died in that year, (fn. 35) and his will, dated 1636, recites that he had made over certain lands to Edward Lord Gorges and Sir Robert Gorges to satisfy his debts, and that to his son John, his residuary legatee, he left all his farm lands, to be sold with all convenient speed. (fn. 36) In compliance with these instructions, Hinwick Hall was sold in 1638 to John, William and Thomas Alston for £3,900. (fn. 37) In 1641 they sold a detached portion of this estate to Richard Child (see Podington Manor), and in 1653 they parted with a further parcel to Richard Orlebar, lord of manors in Podington and Hinwick. The Alstons do not appear to have sold the whole estate to the Orlebars, for as late as 1765 they were declared to hold land in Podington (fn. 38); but in 1671 Richard Orlebar held what is described as Hinwick Hall (although, as shown above, it did not represent the whole of the earlier property called by this name), in which year, together with Samuel Cotton, he alienated it to Creswell Levinz. (fn. 39) He, who was knighted in 1678, was made attorneygeneral in 1679, in which year he alienated this property to William Livesay, whose sister Elizabeth he had married. (fn. 40) Paradine Livesay son of William Livesay sold Hinwick Hall in 1706 to his uncle, Major-General John Livesay, a former governor of Jamaica. (fn. 41) He died in 1717, when Hinwick Hall passed to his nephew John Livesay, on whose death in 1751 his youngest son St. Andrew Livesay inherited the property. (fn. 42) He died in 1767 without issue, and Hinwick passed to his three sisters, (fn. 43) of whom Jane wife of Richard Wagstaffe occupied Hinwick Hall in 1783. (fn. 44) This property was subsequently sold to Mr. John Goosey, a baker at Podington, and after passing through various owners was purchased by William Augustus Orlebar. It is at present the property of Mr. Gilbert Robinson.
The hall stands in a hollow about a quarter of a mile to the east of the road to Podington and on the north side of the Wollaston road, and is approached from the latter through an avenue of lime trees, on either side of which are small sheets of ornamental water; the drive is entered from the roadway through some good wrought-iron gates which have rusticated stone piers surmounted by modillioned cornices and ball finials.
As it now stands the hall is a long rectangular stone building facing the east with a wing extending westwards on the south and a large modern addition on the north; it is two stories high with one in the roof. Most of the roofs are covered with Collyweston slates.
The present building was originally erected in the middle of the 16th century, and the south front is still mainly of that date. Extensive alterations were made in the early part of the 18th century, when the east front was entirely rebuilt in the style of the period with a Corinthian pilaster at either end supporting an entablature, the cornice of which runs right across the front. When William Augustus Orlebar took possession of the hall in 1834 he found it in a very dilapidated condition and partially restored it, while in 1908 it was thoroughly restored by Mr. G. Robinson, the present occupier, who remodelled the west front and made the large addition on the north.
The principal entrance is on the east through a central projecting porch carried up as a clock turret which opens into a small hall, panelled with 18th-century panelling. Immediately behind this entrance hall is another hall, containing the main staircase, which is of the 18th century, with turned oak balusters and handrail, while on the north is the dining-room and on the south a small 18th-century panelled room now used as a boudoir. The division wall between the entrance hall and the dining-room is said to be modern, though from its thickness and the panelling on its south side it appears to be considerably older. Beyond the boudoir and extending along the east end of the south front is the drawingroom, opening out of which, on the north-west, is a lounge which extends northwards as far as the staircase hall. There is an original staircase on the north-west corner of the drawing-room, entered from the lounge, to the west of which is the projecting south-west wing of the building. This contains, on the ground floor, a modern study and lavatory, separated from the drawing-room and staircase by a small passage, at the south end of which is a doorway opening into the garden. Until 1908 there was a low modern extension westward beyond the study, but this has now been cleared away. To the north of the staircase hall behind the dining-room is a butler's pantry. These two rooms mark the extent of the 16th-century building on the north, the present kitchen with the offices and billiard-room having been erected in 1908.
A manor in Hinwick, later known as BOTVILEYNS, HINWICK or BRAYES FARM, originated in the 1½ hides of land which Hugh the Fleming held here in 1086, and which had formerly belonged to Alwold a man of Bishop Wulfwig of Dorchester. (fn. 45) This manor was attached to the barony of Wahull, the last mention of the overlordship occurring in 1428. (fn. 46) The descent of the mesne lordship is the same as that of Cottesbrooke in Northants, and by the middle of the 12th century the manor had passed to Robert Butvillein, from whom it derives its distinctive name, (fn. 47) and whose family was represented in the parish for upwards of 300 years. Robert was succeeded by his son William, who married Joan daughter of Sir Ralph Camoys, and founded Pipewell Abbey in 1143. (fn. 48) His son Robert joined in the barons' rebellion of 1216, for which his estates were forfeited, but restored in the following year. (fn. 49) His son William died c. 1240, in which year the custody of his son Robert and of his lands in Northants was granted to Fulk Basset, Dean of St. Peter's, York. (fn. 50) Robert Butvillein took arms against the king and was taken prisoner at Northampton in 1264. (fn. 51) His son William is first mentioned in connexion with Hinwick in 1271–2. (fn. 52) His lands were at this time extended at 1 carucate in demesne and 2 virgates in villeinage. (fn. 53) He was still holding in Hinwick in 1302–3. (fn. 54)
His son Robert was slain at Bannockburn in 1314, leaving a son William and a widow Nichola, afterwards married to Robert de Ardern. (fn. 55) She received a grant of free warren in Hinwick Manor in 1307, (fn. 56) which was claimed on behalf of her son William, who was still under age in 1331. (fn. 57)
Juliana, who was wife of this William Butvillein, died seised of this manor in 1379, when her heir was declared to be her son Robert, then aged thirty and upwards. (fn. 58) Robert was succeeded by his son Robert, a minor in 1395. (fn. 59) He left a son William, who is described as an idiot at his death, c. 1451, (fn. 60) and whose property was divided between his cousins Elizabeth wife of Thomas Hertshorne, (fn. 61) and Alice wife of John Hemp. (fn. 62) By a partition of lands in 1460 the Bedfordshire property including Hinwick passed to Elizabeth Hertshorne. (fn. 63) Elizabeth's daughter and heir Katharine married Thomas Markham of Sedgebrook, Lincolnshire, (fn. 64) and their son John Markham and Alice his wife conveyed this manor, amongst others, to Sir Reginald Braye in 1499, (fn. 65) by whose family it was retained until 1566, in which year Edmund Braye and Reginald Braye alienated Hinwick Manor to William Rudde. (fn. 66) A few years later Thomas Rudde, probably son of William, sold this manor to William Payne, who held it at his death in 1624, (fn. 67) and it henceforward follows the same descent as Podington Manor (q.v.).
The Bishop of Coutances held 1½ hides of land in Hinwick at the time of the Survey, having as tenant one Turstan. (fn. 68) The overlordship of this property, as in the case of Chellington (q.v.), became attached to the honour of Gloucester of whom the Traillys held as intermediary lords. The last mention that has been found of it occurs in 1460, when Humphrey Duke of Buckingham held part of a knight's fee here. (fn. 69) It seems likely that the Turstan who held this property is identical with Turstin the Chamberlain who held other property in this parish in 1086. However that may be, this land does not immediately follow the same descent and pass to the de Pabenhams, for a family of Croysers appear to have held it in the 13th century. In 1234–5 Simon Croyser granted land in Hinwick by fine to Robert Savage. (fn. 70) Nicholas Croyser had succeeded him by 1278, in which year he held 7 virgates of the honour of Gloucester. (fn. 71) In 1298 John son of Nicholas Croyser entered into an agreement with John de Grey, by which it was arranged that the messuage, 53½ acres of land and 20s. of rent (which represented the Domesday estate), and which John de Pabenham held for life of the inheritance of the said John Croyser, (fn. 72) should revert to John de Grey on the death of John Croyser. (fn. 73) From this time onward this property is found attached to the manor of Hinwick Hall (q.v.) owned by the Pabenhams, though it by no means immediately lost its separate identity. References to it occur in inquisitions in 1345, 1399, 1407 (here the extent is identical with that given in the fine of 1298), 1464 and 1484, after which date it appears to have become absorbed in Hinwick Hall Manor. (fn. 74)
At the Survey Gunfrei de Cioches held 1 hide 3 virgates of the king in chief. (fn. 75) Very little has been subsequently found of this property, though its size was not inconsiderable, but the paramountcy appears to have passed to the Knights Hospitallers, who were overlords in 1278–9 (fn. 76) and in 1316. (fn. 77) Tetbald was tenant of Gunfrei in 1086, but only one further mention has been found of any tenant when in 1278–9 Simon de Bay held 7 virgates here of the Knights Hospitallers by suit of court only. (fn. 78)
A fifth Domesday holder in Hinwick was William Spec, who held 1 hide here, (fn. 79) and whose possessions later became known as the barony of Warden. Walter was his tenant in 1086, and by the time of the Testa the land had passed to Thomas de la Huse. (fn. 80)
A sixth and last holder of land in Hinwick at Domesday was Edward, a burgess of Bedford, who held half a hide here. (fn. 81) It had formerly belonged to his father, and he himself claimed it by grant of William I in almoign. No further trace of it has been found, unless part of it is the virgate of land in Hinwick for which the Sheriff of Bedfordshire returned 4s. ferm to the Crown from 1170 to 1221. (fn. 82) By 1345 it had become the property of the lord of Hinwick Manor, for in this year Thomas de Pabenham held 1 acre of land, a messuage and 11 acres, paying 2s. yearly to the king's Exchequer, (fn. 83) and it is so mentioned in extents of 1399, 1407, 1464–5, 1484 and 1501, after which no further mention has been found. (fn. 84)
Canons Ashby Priory, which was founded by Stephen la Leye, lord of Podington and other manors, in the reign of Henry II (1135–54), (fn. 85) appears to have owned land in this parish from an early date. The first mention that has been found is a 12th-century grant by Hugh la Leye to the priory of the mill of Podington, with a messuage, land and pasture there, 'and also of the miller with his wife, children and chattels.' (fn. 86)
In 1291 the property of the priory was worth £3. (fn. 87) At the Dissolution the rents of Canons Ashby in Podington, then estimated at 15s. 4d., (fn. 88) fell to the Crown, and in 1545 were granted to Daniel Payne, (fn. 89) whose son William became lord of Podington Manor, with which descent this property is henceforward identical. The last separate mention occurs in inquistions of 1624. (fn. 90) In 1330, on the occasion of Walter de Myrnut's appointment to the office of Prior of Ashby, an inventory was taken of the movable goods, which included at Podington 'a plough with only one ox for it, and two steers for the plough. In the hall were a bason, an ewer, and a great dining table; in the kitchen 3 brass pots, with broken feet, one containing 7 gallons, another 2 gallons, and another I gallon, a pottel pitcher, a 2-gallon brass pan, an iron article (illegible), an axe, and a pickaxe; in the brew house 4 vats, 3 coolers, a barrel of 30 gallons, a tub, and 2 barrels of 16 gallons; in the bakeho' lead of 60 gallons. Winter corn sown in fields there 19 acres; dragget 20 acres; and pease 10 acres.' (fn. 91)
In 1086 William Peverel appears in the Northamptonshire inquisition as holding half a hide of land in Podington, but no further trace has been found of this land. (fn. 92)
The church of ST. MARY THE VIRGIN consists of chancel, nave, north aisle, south aisle, south porch and west tower. It is a simple but spacious and dignified little church. The south arcade of the nave dates from the beginning of the 13th century, and the north arcade is a few years later, but an earlier state of the building is shown by the angles of an aisleless nave still to be seen on the outside, which are in small irregular stones and may be of 12th-century date or even earlier. The tower was added in the 13th century, and the chancel is also of this time, probably belonging to the first quarter of the century. The walls of chancel and aisles have been heightened, probably in the 15th century; the upper stage of the tower, with the spire and the clearstory, are also additions of later 14th and 15th-century date. Ironstone ashlar is used in the 13th-century windows, except for detail requiring finer work, and the upper member of the chancel plinth is of the same material.
The chancel has a modern east window of four uncusped lights, over which is a large sixfoil, but in the internal jambs are 13th-century banded shafts with moulded capitals and bases. The north wall has no windows, but four low arched recesses, now blocked, the two in the middle, which are pointed, being probably of 14th-century date, while the other two, with round-headed arches, are 17th-century imitations, with curious scrolled finials above them. Inscribed slabs are now fitted in them to Richard Child, lord of the manor, 1647; arms quarterly, 1 and 4 an engrailed cheveron ermine between three eagles close with a crescent for difference (Child), 2 and 3 a cheveron between three rings with three fleurs de lis on the cheveron (for Payne); to William Payne, lord of the manor, 1624, with the arms of Payne, and to Jane wife of Richard Orlebar and daughter of Sir Thomas Hatton, 1681; and to Margaret wife of George Orlebar and daughter of Richard Child, 1658. On the south side of the chancel is a large 13th-century piscina with a moulded pointed arch, the basin of which has been replaced by a modern shelf; it has a moulded label, which returns and continues as a string under the next window, which is of two pointed uncusped 13th-century lights under a pointed arch, and has jambs similar to the east window carrying a depressed two-centred moulded arch. To the west are a 13th-century lancet and a 15th-century doorway having a four-centred arch and a square returned label, the spandrel being filled with a carved leaf, and at the south-west a tall round-headed light of 13th-century date, set low in the wall. The chancel arch is of two chamfered orders, with 13th-century stops, springing from moulded corbels.
The nave has a north arcade of three bays, with round columns and plain square responds, the arches being of a single order, edge-chamfered, and covered with cement. The north arcade has moulded circular capitals with a line of nail-head on the abaci, and labels with indented angles. The south arcade has slender shafts, with early foliage details in the capital of its eastern column, and a plain bell to the other; the abaci project north and south beyond the capitals to carry the thick wall above, in which the arches are inserted. Above each arcade is a range of three clearstory windows, each consisting of two trefoiled lights of late 14th-century style. The nave roof, which retains some old timbers, probably of the date of the clearstory, is divided into three bays by principals resting on carved corbels, some of which are old.
In the north aisle there is a tall blocked lancet at the east end, and in the north wall are two inserted square-headed windows—one of the 15th century and the other of the 14th—with two trefoiled lights and tracery. The north doorway is of the 13th century, and has a simple pointed chamfered arch and double chamfered label, and in the west wall is a small modern two-light window. The tracery of the south aisle windows is all modern, of 14th-century style; the south doorway is 15th-century work, with a square label and a dropped sub-arch having trefoiled spandrels; over it is a plain cross on a circular stone, and the door itself is contemporary with the doorway, having a pretty carved and traceried head. The south porch is modern, and into it are built some 13th and 14th-century coffin slabs.
The font, which is at the west end of the south aisle, is circular, and of 12th-century date, carved with zigzag ornament for nearly half its circumference, the rest being partly arcaded with round-headed arches and partly worked with a lozenge pattern.
The tower opens into the nave with an arch of two chamfered orders with 13th-century stops and moulded capitals, but the bases have been mutilated. The tower is in three stages, with an octagonal crocketed stone spire; the parapet and angle pinnacles are ruined, leaving only their stumps and a string carved with masks, and large gargoyles at the angles. At the west angles are modern diagonal buttresses. The belfry windows are of two 15th-century cinquefoiled lights with a quatrefoil over, and on the north side below the belfry stage is a small 13th-century lancet. The west window of the ground stage is also a 13th-century lancet, recently lengthened.
The most interesting monument is a brass in the floor, at the west end of the nave, to John Howard, 1518. In the churchyard is the octagonal stump of a cross. At the west end of the nave are some 15th or 16th-century benches with buttressed styles, and there is a 17th-century chest in the vestry under the tower.
The plate consists of a 17th-century chalice and large paten, with the makers' marks I.M. and P.E respectively, both presented by Elizabeth Livesay in 1707, a paten with the maker's mark P.E and a Victorian flagon.
The church of Podington formed part of the original endowment of Canons Ashby Priory by Stephen la Leye in the reign of Henry II. (fn. 93) In 1291 it was worth £10. (fn. 94) At the Dissolution it became Crown property, and in 1545 the advowson of the church, together with the rectory, was granted to Daniel Payne, (fn. 95) whose son William in 1594 acquired Podington Manor, and the church henceforward follows the same descent, being at present in the gift of Mr. Richard R. B. Orlebar.
In 1844 William Goosey by will bequeathed a legacy for the poor of this parish and Wymington, the income to be distributed at Christmas. The amount apportioned to Podington now consists of £24 16s. 7d. Bank stock, held by the official trustees, producing on an average £2 7s. a year.
The official trustees also hold a sum of £120 consols belonging to the charity of Dr. James Johnson, which is regulated by a scheme of the Charity Commissioners of 1 August 1905, where by £1 a year is payable to the minister and £2 a year applicable for educational purposes.