An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Buckinghamshire, Volume 2, North. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1913.
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(O.S. 6 in. xxix. N.E.)
(1). Parish Church of St. Giles, stands on high ground, about 700 yards N.E. of the village and is built of rubble and rough ashlar, almost entirely covered with cement. The roofs are covered with lead, except that of the chancel, which is tiled. The Chancel and Nave were built in the 12th century, but the only remaining details of that date are some carved stones which have been re-set in the S. porch and elsewhere. The chancel arch was widened c. 1340 and the windows of the chancel and nave, except the E. window, were inserted in the 15th century. The North Aisle and West Tower were added towards the end of the 15th century. The church was completely restored in the 19th century, when the South Porch and the E. wall of the chancel were re-built and the North Vestry was added.
The 17th-century pulpit and communion-table are noteworthy (see Plates, pp. 48, 50).
Architectural Description—The Chancel (19½ ft. by 16 ft.) has a modern E. window. In the N. wall is a modern doorway opening into the vestry; further W. is a 15th-century window of two cinque-foiled pointed lights under a square head with a moulded external label and a four-centred rear arch. In the S. wall are two windows; the eastern is of late 15th or early 16th-century date, and of two trefoiled pointed lights, under a square head, with a segmental pointed rear arch; the western window is of the 15th century and of three trefoiled pointed lights under a square head with a four-centred rear arch and a moulded external label, which has a returnstop on the E. side and a head-stop on the W. side: between the windows is a doorway, probably of the 16th century, of one chamfered order, with a flat three-centred head. The four-centred chancel arch is of c. 1340 and of two continuously moulded orders on the E. side and three on the W. side; the innermost order has moulded ogee-stops and the other orders have broach-stops. The Nave (39 ft. by 19½ ft.) has a late 15th-century N. arcade of three bays with octagonal pillars and semi-octagonal responds, all having moulded capitals and bases; the arches are two-centred and of two chamfered orders. In the S. wall are four windows; the easternmost is of late 15th-century date and of two trefoiled four-centred lights under a square head with a segmental pointed rear arch; the other windows are also of the 15th century, and are each of two trefoiled pointed lights under a square head; the 15th-century S. doorway, under the third window, is of two chamfered orders with a four-centred head; the staircase to the former rood-loft is shown externally by a square projection at the E. end of the S. wall, but the doorway is hidden by the organ. The North Aisle (10 ft. wide) has a late 15th-century E. window of three cinque-foiled four-centred lights under a square head with a moulded label. In the N. wall are three windows of late 15th-century date; the eastern and western are each of three trefoiled pointed lights in a square head; the middle window is similar to the others, but of two lights: between it and the western window is the N. doorway of late 15th-century date, now blocked and only visible externally; it is of two chamfered orders, with a four-centred head; the jambs have moulded plinths. The N.E. buttress of the tower projects into the S.W. angle of the aisle. The West Tower (14 ft. by 10 ft.) is of three receding stages with a cemented parapet; at the W. angles are diagonal buttresses, and at the S.E. angle is a projecting, semi-octagonal stair-turret, rising to the floor-level of the ringing-chamber. The detail is all of late 15th-century date. The tower arch is four-centred, of three chamfered orders on the W. side and two on the E. side; the inner order has moulded capitals, the other orders are continuous and have chamfered stops as bases; on the E. side is a moulded label: the doorway opening into the stair-turret has a four-centred head. The W. window is of three cinque-foiled lights under a four-centred head, with a moulded external label and a rear arch of two chamfered orders. The second stage has a single light in the W. wall, and the bell-chamber has a window of two cinque-foiled lights in each wall. The stair-turret has two small lights, the lower a trefoil and the upper a quatrefoil.
Fittings—Bells: six; 2nd, by James Keene, 1638; 3rd, by John Dier, late 16th-century; 4th, by James Keene, 1634; 5th, inscribed 'ancta maria ora pro nobis', stamped with a small shield, reversed, containing a rebus—a W. on a tun—and letters, also reversed, possibly meant for 'Prior', probably by John Saunders, 1539–1559; 6th, by Richard Chandler, 1638. Chest: In vestry—of panelled oak, probably early 17th-century. Communion Table: with top rails moulded and carved with arabesque ornament and human faces, foot rails carved and moulded, four large turned legs, reeded and carved, early 17th-century. Doors: In tower—opening from ground stage to stair-turret, of oak battens; opening from stair-turret to ringing-chamber, consisting of a single heavy oak plank; both probably 15th-century. Font: octagonal bowl chamfered at the bottom, octagonal stem with ogee stops and square foot, chamfered base, 15th-century. Glass: In vestry—in E. window, eight small fragments white and gold, flowers, one quarry with a skull having a thigh bone in the mouth, another with part of an inscription in black-letter, probably 15th-century. Piscina: see Recesses. Pulpit: In nave—in N.E. angle, hexagonal, of oak with modern stone base, each of the three exposed sides and door divided into three stages, middle stage having rectangular and L-shaped panels, other stages having each a carved foliated panel; styles enriched with arabesque carvings and cornice with a running ornament, book-rest carved on the under side and supported by brackets carved as grotesque animals; the standard, of two wings, one on each wall, in two panelled stages having styles with pilasters carved as herms, and flanked on each side by grotesque consoles, sounding-board hexagonal with moulded and carved frieze surmounted by carved pierced cresting, at each angle a turned pendant and a square pierced pinnacle, soffit panelled; early 17th-century. Recess: In chancel—in S. wall, plain, square, occupying position of piscina, but with no details to show that it was used for that purpose. In nave—in W. wall, with splayed jambs, flat sill and head, use uncertain. Sedile: In chancel—ledge of S.E. window carried down to form seat. Miscellanea: In nave—above pulpit at E. end of N. wall, wooden corbel, moulded and carved with dentil ornament on face and a volute on side, probably 17th-century. Built into various walls, the following carved stones: chancel—outside, in E. gable, (1) carved head; vestry—outside, in E. wall, (2) small capital with volute ornament; nave—outside, in W. end of S. wall, high up, (3) incised face surrounded with zig-zag ornament; inside, in N. wall, at W. end, (4) plain corbel; in S. wall, (5) three pieces of carved string-course or corbels, and plain corbel; porch—outside, in E. wall, (6) two small squares with flowers in relief; in W. wall, (7) two similar flowers and piece of diaper ornament; in S. wall, (8) three similar flowers and halves of two birds each with fan-tail; inside, in E. wall, (9) two pieces of shaft with scallops and two pieces of diaper ornament; in W. wall, (10) part of moulding of arch with a form of beak ornament, length of billet-moulded string-course, and two pieces of shaft with cable and pellet moulding; all 12th-century.
Condition—Windows, etc., repaired with cement which has stripped off in places, otherwise good.
(2). Homestead Moat and Fish-pond, 130 yards N.W. of the Manor House.
The buildings are all of two storeys, and timber-framed with plaster or brick filling; many are of 17th-century origin, but have been considerably restored and altered; the roofs generally are thatched. The cottages are all of rectangular plan, except one.
(3). Cottage, now two tenements, on the W. side of the road, about 3/8 mile S.W. of the church. The central chimney stack has been re-built at the top.
(4). Farmhouse, W. of (3). The doorways, windows and chimneys are of the 18th century, and the walls have been much patched and repaired. The roofs are tiled. The plan is of half-H shape, with modern additions at the back. The wings have hipped gables.
Condition—Fairly good, much altered.
(5). Cottage, now three tenements, in St. Andrew's Terrace, 100 yards S.W. of (3). It was built late in the 16th or early in the 17th century, but has been much altered and enlarged. The filling is of modern brick and the walls are partly weather-boarded. The plan is irregular.
Condition—Fairly good, much altered.
Main road, W. side
(6). Cottage, now three tenements, about ½ mile S. of the church.
(7). Cottage, three tenements, about 50 yards S.E. of (6). It is of uncertain date, probably mediæval, but much altered and restored. The gable facing the road has remains of 'crook' or 'fork' construction, and the wall retains traces of three bays of the same construction; the timbers originally extended from the ground to the ridge of the roof, but have been cut.
Condition—Fairly good, the original structure much patched.
(8). Cottage, S. of (7). The walls have modern brick filling. The roof is tiled.
Condition—Good, much altered.
(9). The Old Swan Inn, S.E. of (8). It was built probably in the 16th century, but the walls have been partly re-built with modern brick; the original timber-framing is very rough. The plan is T-shaped, and at the ends of the wings are half-hipped gables, with naturally cambered tie-beams.
(10). Cottage, about 3/8 mile S.W. of the church. It was of the central chimney type, but has been enlarged and much restored. The walls are gabled; the roof is tiled.
Condition—Good, much altered.
(11). Cottages, three in one range, behind the Post Office, at the N. end of the village, about 500 yards S.W. of the church. The walls are on brick foundations, and the brick filling is whitewashed. There is a modern addition at the back and a modern shop at the S.W. end.
(12). House, adjoining (11) at the N.E. end, is of two storeys, built of red and black bricks late in the 17th century. The roof is tiled. The plan is L-shaped, with the internal angle facing W. The chimney stack at the S.W. end is original. Interior:—On the ground floor there are plain ceiling-beams and a wide fireplace.
(13). Lynchets, on Southend Hill and Westend Hill; those on Southend Hill are the best examples in the county.
Condition—On Southend Hill, very good; on Westend Hill, fairly good.