An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Huntingdonshire. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1926.

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'Upton', in An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Huntingdonshire, (London, 1926) pp. 278-279. British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/rchme/hunts/pp278-279 [accessed 12 April 2024]

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87. UPTON (B.d.)

(O.S. 6 in. XIII S.E.)

Upton is a parish and small village 6 m. N.W. of Huntingdon. The Church is the principal monument.


(1). Parish Church of St. Margaret stands in the village. The walls are of stone and pebble-rubble with dressings of Weldon and Ketton stone. The roofs are covered with tiles and lead. The earliest parts of the existing structure still in situ are the Chancel, the arcades of the Nave and the South Aisle, which were built early in the 13th century, but the re-set S. doorway and font are of late 12th-century date. Early in the 14th century the chancel was partly re-built and later in the same century, c. 1330–40, the North Aisle was re-built, the S. aisle partly re-built and heightened, and the clearstorey added. At the same time the W. wall was buttressed and probably thickened and provided with a bell-cote. In the 15th century the chancel-arch was re-built and the West Tower and spire added in place of the former bell-cote. The church has been drastically restored in 1870, when the N. Aisle was widened, both aisles restored to their original length and the North Vestry and South Porch added.

The church is of no great architectural interest, but among the fittings the font and communion table are noteworthy.

The Church, Plan

Architectural Description—The Chancel (22 ft. by 15½ ft.) has an early 14th-century E. window of three pointed lights with intersecting tracery in a two-centred head with a moulded label and head and beast-stops. In the N. wall is an early 13th-century lancet-window, with a re-set rear-arch. In the S. wall are two windows, the eastern of two lancets almost entirely modern and the western a lancet of 13th-century origin, but almost completely restored; the 13th-century doorway has chamfered jambs and trefoiled head with a moulded label and mask-stops. The 15th-century chancel-arch is two-centred and of two moulded orders; the chamfered responds have each an attached shaft with moulded capitals and partly restored bases.

The Nave (29¼ ft. by 16¾ ft.) has early 13th-century N. and S. arcades of three bays, the westernmost partly enveloped by the W. tower; the two-centred arches are of two chamfered orders and rest on round columns and half-round responds, all with moulded capitals and bases; the W. part of the W. arch on the N. has been re-built when the tower was added and is much distorted. The clearstorey has on each side three 14th-century windows, each of two trefoiled ogee lights in a square head; the S. clearstorey has been largely re-built.

The North Aisle (13½ ft. wide), re-built and widened in 1870, has in the E. wall a modern doorway. In the N. wall are two windows, the eastern modern except for the splays and some re-used stones in the jambs; the western window is of the 14th century and of one trefoiled ogee light, partly restored; the 13th-century N. door-way has been re-set and is now blocked; it has moulded jambs and square head. In the W. wall is a modern window.

The South Aisle (5¼ ft. wide) has in the E. wall a partly restored 14th-century window of two trefoiled ogee lights in a square head with a moulded label. In the S. wall are two windows, both similar to that in the E. wall, but the eastern window is of three lights; the re-set late 12th-century S. doorway has a round arch of one moulded order with a chamfered label; the jambs have each an attached shaft with cushion-capital and moulded abacus continued round the jamb. In the W. wall is a modern window.

The West Tower (6½ ft. by 10¾ ft.) is of the 15th century, above the 14th-century W. wall, and of three stages (Plate 4) with a cornice and tabling at the base of the spire; the whole structure is oblong, but approaches more nearly the square in the upper stages, the transition being covered by tabling. The lower walls have been refaced. The two-centred tower-arch is of two chamfered orders, the outer continuous and the inner springing from attached shafts with moulded capitals. In the W. wall are two partly restored windows of the 14th century, each of one trefoiled ogee light. The second stage is undivided, internally, from the bell-chamber; the N. and S. walls have each a single-light window with a pointed head; re-set above the S. window are two head-stops. The bell-chamber has in the N., S. and W. walls a window of two cinque-foiled lights with a quatre-foiled spandrel in a four-centred head with moulded external reveals and label; in the E. wall is a similar window, but of one cinque-foiled light. The ashlar-faced spire is octagonal but of oblong plan and stands on a low vertical base; it has two tiers each of four spire-lights; the windows of the lower tier are each of two trefoiled lights with a quatre-foiled spandrel in a gabled head; the windows of the upper tier are each of one trefoiled light in a gabled head.

The Roof of the N. aisle is modern but incorporates some 14th-century moulded timbers.

Fittings—Bells: two; inaccessible, but 2nd said to be by Norris, 1671. Chest: In W. tower— modern but incorporating some late 17th-century panels. Communion Table (Plate 151): In vestry—with heavy turned legs, old shaped brackets at back and turned pendants to top rail, early 17th-century. Font (Plate 8): late 12th-century bowl in form of a column-capital, square to round on plan and with scalloped and reeded sides and roll-necking, 13th-century stem consisting of a central and eight subsidiary shafts of Purbeck-marble, with moulded capitals and bases and a common circular abacus. Glass: In S. aisle—in E. window, roundel with the initials X P C and a border, early 16th-century. Piscina: In S. aisle—in S. wall, double recess with chamfered jambs, two-centred heads and moulded labels, one quatre-foiled and one trefoiled drain, 13th-century. Plate: includes cup and cover-paten of 1634. Recesses: In chancel—in N. wall, with moulded jambs and segmental-pointed arch, with moulded label and mutilated foliated stops, 14th-century, probably Easter Sepulchre; in W. wall—S. of chancel-arch, square recess, probably blocked squint. Miscellanea: In churchyard—square base of churchyard-cross, splayed back to an octagon, square socket for stem.



(2). Homestead Moat, at Manor Farm, about 80 yards E. of the church, is fragmentary.

(3). Christ's College Farm, house and moat, 100 yards N.W. of the church. The House is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are thatched. The southern part was built probably early in the 17th century and the northern extension later in the same century. Inside the building the ground-floor rooms have original chamfered ceiling-beams; the doorway between the two parts of the house has a moulded frame. At the foot of the staircase is an original panelled door with a moulded middle style. A room on the first floor has an original stone fireplace with a four-centred arch in a square head and a moulded cornice above.

The Moat is fragmentary.