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.
13. BURY. (D.c.).
(O.S. 6 in. XIV. N.E.)
Bury is a village and parish adjoining Ramsey on the S. The church is the principal monument.
(1). Parish Church of the Holy Cross stands to the E. of the village (Plate 15). The walls are of stone rubble with dressings of Barnack stone; the western annexe was ashlar-faced; the roofs are covered with slates and tiles. The Nave with the W. doorway and chancel-arch belong to an early 12th-century aisleless church. About 1210 the North Aisle was added and the N. arcade built. The West Tower was added c. 1250. The North Aisle was re-built probably in the 14th century. About 1400 the Chancel was re-built and the S. wall of the nave is perhaps of the same period. Late in the 15th century the large West Chapel was added W. of the tower, perhaps to act as a buttress to it. Probably in the 16th century the chancel was shortened and the E. wall re-built. The church was restored in 1889 and the South Porch is modern.
The church has good 12th-century detail in the chancel-arch and W. doorway, the W. tower is a fine example of 13th-century work and the W. chapel is unusual both in position and arrangement. Among the fittings the lectern is noteworthy.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (27 ft. by 14½ ft.) has a modern E. window. In the N. wall is a window of c. 1400 and of one cinque-foiled light, carried down below a transom as a 'low-side'; it retains its oak shutter but is plastered internally; against the E. buttress is the jamb and part of the head of a destroyed 15th-century window, showing that the chancel has been shortened. In the S. wall are two windows, the eastern of the 15th century and of two cinque-foiled lights with a quatre-foiled spandrel in a four-centred head; the western window is similar to that in the N. wall and also retains the shutter of its 'low-side'; the 15th-century doorway has chamfered jambs and four-centred arch with a moulded label; against the E. buttress are remains of a window, similar to that in the N. wall. The early 12th-century chancel-arch is semi-circular and of two orders on the W. face, the inner having two broad rolls on the soffit and the outer with a single roll-moulding; the responds (Plate 33) have two half-round shafts on the reveal with moulded bases, chamfered and grooved abaci and capitals carved with basket-ornament having foliated terminations; the inner capital has been partly cut away for the screen; the outer order of the responds has a free shaft with moulded base and cushion-capital.
The Nave (48 ft. by 19½ ft.) has a N. arcade of c. 1210 and of three bays with wide two-centred arches of one hollow-chamfered order springing at each end from moulded imposts each supported on three moulded corbels; the octagonal columns have moulded bases, square plinths, moulded capitals carved with stiff-leaf foliage and square moulded abaci. The S. wall has, in the lower range, two 15th-century windows, partly restored externally, and each of three cinque-foiled ogee lights with vertical tracery in a four-centred head with a moulded label and casement-moulded splays; the S. doorway has a re-set mid 13th-century arch of three moulded orders and with plain chamfered jambs. The clearstorey has on each side three windows of c. 1400 and each of two cinque-foiled lights in a square head, under a segmental-pointed arch; below the parapet on each side are two grotesque gargoyles. In the W. wall, now covered by the tower, is an early 12th-century doorway (Plate 34) of three orders, the two outer roll-moulded and round and the inner plain with a lintel and a tympanum filled with square stones set diagonally; the chamfered label has diaper-ornament; the jambs have each two free shafts with moulded bases, chamfered and grooved abaci and cushion or scalloped capitals with concentric ring-ornament on the vertical faces.
The North Aisle (7½ ft. wide) has one window in the E. and three in the N. wall, all of c. 1400, and set in earlier openings, apparently heightened; they are each of two cinque-foiled lights in a square head with a segmental outer order; the N. doorway is of the 14th century; it has chamfered jambs and two-centred arch with a moulded label and returned stops.
The West Tower (11 ft. by 10 ft.) is of mid 13th-century date and of three stages (Plate 31) divided by moulded string-courses and has an embattled parapet with three large gargoyles at the angles; the fourth, at the N.E. angle, is missing. The ground-stage was formerly open to the churchyard on the N., S. and W. and has in each of these faces a two-centred arch of two orders, the inner chamfered and springing from moulded corbels; the outer order on the N. is chamfered but on the S. and W. it is moulded; the inner order of the N. arch has been removed; the corbels of the W. arch are carved with 'stiff-leaf' foliage; all three arches have more or less modern blocking, that on the S. containing a window and that on the W. a doorway. Across the N. and S. faces of the tower are chases indicating the former existence of a pent-roof against them but evidently posterior to the original structure; against the W. face are similar marks of a gabled roof anterior to the erection of the W. chapel. The second stage has in the N., S. and W. walls a very tall lancet-window with jambs and head of two orders, the inner chamfered and the outer moulded, except the N. window, which has both orders chamfered; the moulded labels have mask-stops; The lower part of the N. window, below the added pent-roof, has been widened to form a doorway. The bell-chamber has in each wall two lancet-windows with jambs and head of two chamfered orders and a moulded label with mask-stops; this stage has a stone roof with eight chamfered ribs meeting in the middle and squinches across the angles of the tower.
The West Chapel (21½ ft. wide) has disappeared except for the ruined portions adjoining the tower. It is said to have been 35 ft. long. It was of late 15th-century date, ashlar-faced and with moulded offsets to the buttresses. The chapel has an under-croft-roof with a flat segmental vault of rubble of which small portions in the E. angles remain. Adjoining the E. buttress of the chapel on each side is the moulded jamb of a former window.
The Roof of the N. aisle is plastered on the soffit but the lower parts of four old curved braces are exposed.
Fittings—Bells: three; 2nd inscribed "Ave Maria" in Lombardic capitals, possibly by William Rufford, 14th-century; 3rd by Charles Newman, 1700. Chest: In nave—of oak, with panelled front and fluted frieze, shaped brackets to front legs, c. 1620. Cross: In churchyard—S. of chancel, stone rectangular base of cross with socket for shaft, part of head loose, mediæval. Font: of freestone, originally square with conventional carving on sides, late 12th-century, angles cut off and carving mostly effaced; round stem with necking and base added probably in the 13th century; three staples for fixing cover. Glass: In chancel—in N.W. window, border to head of light, of crowns with blue and red glass, also quarries with diaper-design in yellow, c. 1400, in situ. In N. aisle—in E. window, round heads of both lights, border of yellow crowns, several pieces of lozenge-design and several quarries as in chancel-window, partly in situ; in N.E. window, similar border of crowns round most of E. light, also two fragments with larger crowns and part of a monogram; in middle window, two pieces of lozenge-ornament; in N.W. window, border of crowns and blue glass to W. light, also some diapered quarries, all c. 1400, partly in situ. Lectern: book-rest (Plate 32) of very thin oak boards with carving out of the solid, front with five trefoiled arches with shafts and foliage, board cut off at ends, spandrels at one end with trefoiled ogee-headed opening, at other end carved oak-leaves; on desk, a border of running foliage and a square of foliage in the middle, slender octagonal post with moulded capital, early 14th-century, partly repaired and post perhaps later. Lockers: In chancel—in N. wall, two, one above the other, rectangular, with rebated reveals. Monuments: In churchyard—S. of church, (1) to William, son of John Campion, 1698, low table-tomb; (2) to John Campion, 171–, low table-tomb; (3) freestone coped slab with inscribed shield, superimposed, and large scrolled top, 17th-century, inscription defaced; (4) to Thomas Bestor, late 17th-century, head-stone; (5) small head-stone, inscription defaced, late 17th-century; (6) head-stone with round head and illegible inscription on shield, c. 1700. Niches: In W. chapel—in E. wall, flanking tower, two with defaced tabernacled heads and vaulting, side shafts and pedestals carved with defaced beasts, 15th-century. Piscina: In chancel—stone with sunk drain set in modern recess. Plate: includes an Elizabethan cup with a band of engraved ornament, marks obliterated. Recess: In chancel —S. of chancel-arch, plain square recess. Screen: (Plate 33) Under chancel-arch—of five bays, including doorway, with hollow-chamfered posts, chamfered rail and moulded head, close lower panels, those of S. each with two cinque-foiled heads and foliated spandrels, open upper panels with trefoiled ogee and sub-cusped heads with tracery, doorway with cinque-foiled ogee head and tracery, 15th-century; brattishing and heads of N. close-panels, modern. Seating: In nave—seventeen pews with square bench-ends having moulded edges and moulded rails, buttressed back to one pew, 15th- or early 16th-century, made up with new work. Miscellanea: Built into W. wall of tower—two head-corbels and a defaced fragment with foliage, 13th-century.
Condition—Poor, some stonework much weathered, tower has an old settlement towards the W. and pointing is very defective.
(2). Manor House (Plate 15), opposite the church, now two tenements, is of two storeys with attics; the walls are of rubble with some timber-framing and the roofs are tiled. It was built probably late in the 16th century. The two chimney-stacks have each three square shafts with a moulded base. Inside the building there is a doorway with a four-centred head at the foot of the stairs which retain one square newel with a shaped top. There are some exposed ceiling-beams.
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. Several of the houses have exposed ceiling-beams and original chimney-stacks.
(3). Cottage, N.W. of the church.
(4). Range of three tenements, on the S. side of the road 340 yards W.N.W. of the church, has been refaced with brick. The original chimney-stack has a cross-shaped shaft, set diagonally.
(5). Range of three tenements, 40 yards W. of (4), has been faced with brick.
(6). Range of four tenements, on the N. side of the road, N. of (4). The westernmost tenement is a later addition.
(7). Cottage now part of house, 80 yards N. of (6), has been faced with brick and completely modernised.
(8). House on W. side of road, 80 yards W. of (7), is of two storeys with attics. The timber-framing is exposed at the ends.
(9). House and barn, 200 yards S. of (8). The House has a later addition at the back. The central chimney-stack has grouped diagonal shafts. Inside the building one room has original panelling. In the front wall of a barn adjoining the house is a stone inscribed /?/ 1675.
The Barn N. of the house has exposed timber-framing on the S.
Condition—Of both, good.
(10). Cottage, two tenements, 100 yards S.S.W. of (9), has a central chimney-stack with grouped diagonal shafts. The roof is covered with corrugated iron.
(11). Cottage, two tenements at Owl's End, 140 yards S.S.W. of (10), has a central chimney-stack similar to that of (10).
(12). Mound, about ¼ m. S. of the church, is roughly circular, 75 ft. in diameter and 5 ft. to 6 ft. high.