An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Hertfordshire. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1910.
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(O.S. 6 in. (a)xxii. N.W. (b)xxii. S.W.)
b(1). Dwelling House, at Youngsbury (see also Thundridge), discovered 1756; there are two Barrows close to it, one found to contain Roman burials.
Condition—Of dwelling house, no remains above ground.
a(2). Parish Church of St. Mary, stands on low ground in the middle of the village, close to the E. bank of the river Rib. It is built of flint, with stone dressings, those outside being of shelly oolite; the tower is covered with cement. The Chancel was built c. 1230; nothing is left to show whether the nave of that time was contemporary with the chancel or older, but the W. door was inserted c. 1320, and the Nave practically re-built c. 1345, when the North and South Aisles were added. In the 15th century the West Porch was built: a detached South-east Tower, an unusual feature, was erected probably in the same century, but it is now much restored; its position may have been decided by the rise of the ground towards the E., and perhaps by the existence of the 14th-century W. doorway, with probably a W. porch of timber. In 1864 the fabric was completely repaired; most of the external stonework was renewed, an Organ Chamber was erected on the S. side of the chancel, and the tower was thus connected with the main building; the tower was repaired with brick in the upper stages, and coated with cement, and a Vestry was added on the N. side.
The building is especially interesting on account of the fine chancel arch of early 13th-century date, the Field tomb, with 15th-century brasses, in the N. aisle, and the Sadleir tombs, of the 16th and 17th centuries, in the chancel.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (38½ ft. by 20½ ft.) has its floor raised considerably above the floor of the nave in order to follow the natural rise of the ground: the E. windows are modern: in the N. wall there is a doorway to the modern vestry, and two modern lancets, and in the S. wall another modern light, a blocked doorway, and a modern archway to the organ-chamber. The chancel arch is a fine example of work of c. 1230; it is elaborately moulded and enriched with dog-tooth ornament; the marble shafts in the jambs are modern, but the stone bases and carved foliated capitals are original. The W. wall, on each side of the archway, is pierced by a pointed squint of slightly later date than the arch, much repaired. The Nave (71½ ft. by 22 ft.) has N. and S. arcades of five bays; the piers, formed of four attached semi-octagonal shafts with moulded bases and capitals, and the pointed arches of two moulded orders, are of c. 1345; the clearstorey windows, of two lights, have inner jambs of c. 1400, but are restored outside. The W. doorway has oolite jambs and a moulded clunch arch of early 14th-century date; over it is a mid 14th-century window of four lights with flowing tracery. The North Aisle (12 ft. wide) has an E. window of three lights with flowing tracery, four N. windows of two lights with tracery, and a W. window of three lights with tracery; all of mid 14th-century date, restored; the labels inside, over the first and third N. windows and the W. window, have crudely cut head-stops; a moulded string course on the N. wall, inside, is interrupted by the blocked 14th-century N. doorway, which has a pointed arch of two moulded orders and labels inside and outside. The South Aisle (12 ft. wide) has windows similar to those in the N. aisle, but the inner labels of the S. windows are different; the E. window, now unglazed, looks into the modern organ-chamber; in the N.E. corner of the aisle is the stair-turret to the former rood-loft; a 15th-century doorway with a four-centred arch, opens into it at the foot, and a similar doorway at the head of the turret opens into the nave; the S. doorway, of mid 14th-century date, has a pointed arch; the rear arch is richly moulded and has a label and head stops; the outer jambs have been repaired. The South-east Tower (14 ft. square) is of three stages, with an embattled parapet and a slender leaded spire; the lowest stage has N. and W. doorways, both repaired with cement; the upper windows are modern. The South Porch is modern. The West Porch (14½ ft. by 12 ft.) is of the 15th century, and the moulded and pointed entrance archway retains much of the original stonework; the side windows are restored. The Roofs are modern.
Fittings—Bells: six; two dated 1630. Brackets: for images, on the E. wall of chancel, carved as an angel with a shield: on the E. wall of N. aisle, with plainer detail. Brasses: at E. end of nave, to William Coffyn, knight, of the Household of Henry VIII., Master of the Horse to Queen Jane, died 1538, inscription and coat-of-arms: of civilian, c. 1450, inscription and paternal shield missing, maternal shield, with arms of Wade, remaining: of man in armour, with inscription to——Wade, died 1557, and arms, Wade impaling another, and old arms of the Merchant Taylors' Company: to Richard Emerson, died 1562, inscription only: on the S. wall of chancel, to John Ruggewyn, 1412, and his wife, inscription only. (See also Monuments.) Chests: in the organ-chamber, iron-bound, probably 16th-century: in the vestry, another of later date. Font: bowl, with bands of horizontal foliage, 13th-century, stem modern, but bases of shafts apparently original. Monuments: on N. side of chancel, large, marble, of Sir Thomas Sadleir, died 1606, and his wife, recumbent effigies in a large round-headed recess; on the base, figures of son and daughter and two heraldic shields: on the S. side of chancel, of Sir Ralph Sadleir, died 1587, with his effigy in armour; on the side, figures of three sons and four daughters, with heraldic shields; suspended above the monument, two helmets, a sword, stirrups, halberd, spurs, etc., and standard of a banner, said to have been captured by Sir Ralph from the King of Scotland at Musselburgh. In the N. aisle, altar tomb, plain stone sides, with indents for three shields; in marble slab at the top, two brass figures, of a man in robes of an alderman of London, said to be John Field, died 1474, with small figures of two sons and daughter below; of his son John, in armour, with arms of Field on his tabard, two sons and two daughters below; at corners of slab, four shields with arms of the City of London, of the Staple of Calais, a merchant's mark and arms of Field; inscription at side, with alderman's name and date of son's death missing. In the vestry, mural tablet to Anne, daughter of Sir Edward Coke, wife of Ralph Sadleir, 1660. In E. wall of chancel, outside, tomb of Richard Sadleir, undated. Piscinae: in S. wall of chancel, partly destroyed by the Sadleir monument of 1587, 15th-century: against the E. wall of N. aisle, ancient, with sill of unusually great projection: in S. aisle, with moulded jambs and head, mid 14th-century. Miscellanea: in a modern recess in the S. aisle, ancient stone Coffin, without lid.
Condition—Good; much restored outside.
a(3). Homestead Moat, at Mentley Farm, fragment.
b(4). Sutes Manor House (now a farmhouse) and Moat, in the hamlet of High Cross, about three miles S.W. of the church. The house was built during the first half of the 17th century, and is of two storeys, with timber-framed and plastered walls; part of the gabled N. front has been repaired with modern brick; the tiled roof is hipped at the S. end. The plan was originally L-shaped, but the addition of a small modern wing on the E. side has made it roughly T-shaped. There are two original chimney stacks, one with attached shafts set diagonally, the other square and plain. All the windows and doorways have modern frames, except the outer doorway opening into the kitchen in the smaller original wing. The kitchen retains the large fireplace, partly blocked, and there are also some original floor joists.
Only a fragment remains of the moat.
Condition—Of house, good.
a(5). The Lordship, a manor house, stands on the W. bank of the river Rib, about ½ mile S.S.W. of the church. The old parts of the present building are of two storeys and attics, built of thin red bricks, and are the remains of a large house with a central courtyard; two old stones bear the date 1546 and one has also the initials of the builder, Sir Ralph Sadleir; the roofs are tiled. A plan preserved at the house shows the size of the original structure: the main front, facing W., had a large middle gateway, giving access to the quadrangle, flanked by semi-octagonal turrets both on the outer face and towards the courtyard; the principal rooms were on the S. of this gateway and in the S. wing, while the kitchen and offices were on the N. side; on the E. side of the courtyard (not square with the rest of the house) was a range of buildings probably containing the lesser domestic offices. The house fell into decay, and was divided into several tenements, but was converted again into a single house in the last century; practically all that is left of the original building is the S. half of the W wing, with a small S.W. wing, the foundations of the N. half and N.W. turret, on which are raised modern buildings, and the ground stage of the middle gateway. On the W. front two of the original gables remain, with moulded brick copings, and the stumps of former pinnacles; the middle gateway has moulded jambs and a four-centred arch covered with cement; the flanking turrets are roofed just above the ground stage; those at the back contain the stairs; in the side wall of one of the front turrets is one of the dated stone; the other stone is set in the gable at the S. end of the W. wing. The small S.W. wing is gabled and has a side entrance. All the windows are square and have modern wood frames; the sills, jambs and lintels are of brick, formerly dressed with cement. The three original chimney stacks have tall diagonal shafts with plain oversailing courses as caps. The space inside the middle gateway is now enclosed to serve as an entrance hall, and has a modern fireplace. In the two rooms on the S. are four stone fireplaces with moulded jambs, four-centred arches and spandrels carved with foliage, one fireplace having also a frieze with five quatrefoil panels. The bedrooms on the first floor have stone fireplaces with similar four-centred arches; most of these fireplaces are probably original, but they have been cleaned and restored, and one or two are modern copies; in one of the rooms is a little 17th-century oak panelling. In the gardens E. of the house parts of the original S. wall, a few feet high, remain, with traces of openings for fireplaces, windows and an archway. The site of the E. wing is now covered by trees, but fragments of brick foundations remain. A range of stables S.E. of the house has some old bricks in the walls, and the barns and cowsheds on the S.W. have an old brick wall facing N. with a gable at each end; the other walls are timber-framed and probably modern.
Condition—Generally good; there is some ivy on the walls, but chiefly on the modern parts of the building.
a(6). Standon Endowed School, S. of the church, is a two-storeyed building of brick and timber, on a brick and stone base; the roof is tiled. The building has been much repaired, and retains no original detail, but it is probably of late mediæval date. The plan is rectangular, and on the N. side the upper storey projects.
a(7). Cottages, in the main street of the village: on the E. side, a row of two-storeyed buildings, including the Windmill Inn, are probably of the 17th century, but five of the fronts have been renewed. Some of the brick chimney stacks are original. On the W. side, the Star Inn, also probably of the 17th century, retains some original brick chimneys. At the N. end, opposite the mill, is a block of timber cottages with thatched roofs and a square central chimney stack.
b(8). Cottage, at High Cross, on the E. side of the main road, about 3 miles S.W. of the church, is a 17th-century, timber-framed and plastered building facing W.; the steeply pitched roof is tiled. On the front the lower storey has been re-faced with modern brick; the upper storey projects, and is supported by curved brackets. The N. and S. ends are gabled, and the S. end has an old, square bay window with a wood frame. Nearly all the other window frames and the doorways are modern. The central chimney stack is original, and has three detached square shafts set diagonally.
The Village of Puckeridge (see also Braughing):—
a(9). Everett Hall and a House N. of it contain eight oak doors, of c. 1630, originally belonging to old houses in the village which have been destroyed. Each door has six panels with good moulded edges worked on the solid.
a(10). The Old George Inn, on the W. side of the main street, is probably of the 17th century, and two Cottages, now used as stables, at the N. end of the village, are probably of late 16th-century date. The inn is a two-storeyed building of timber and brick nogging; the roof is tiled. The N. end of the street front has a wide gateway, over which the upper storey projects; the S. end has a 19th-century brick front and the interior has been much altered. The cottages are built of timber with brick nogging; the roofs are tiled. The plan is rectangular, and only one room deep. In the N. front are two four-centred doorways, one with moulded edges and enriched spandrels; the dormer windows evidently always lighted an upper storey, but the present floor is modern, and one dormer window has been removed to the gable at the W. end. All the windows have leaded lights.
Condition—Of inn, good, much altered and repaired; of cottages, fairly good.
b(11). Moated Tumulus, S. of Rennesley Garden Wood.
(1). Barrow. (See under Roman above.)