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Modern Britain

Gallery: Churches of Warwickshire

by Peter Kessler, 18 April 2010

South Warwickshire Part 14: Churches of Temple Grafton, Exhall & Wixford

St Giles

St Giles, Exhall, is on the south-eastern side of the main street, which is midway between Temple Grafton and Wixford, to the north of Bidford-on-Avon (not to be confused with Exhall in North Warwickshire). The parish lies across the valley of the Hay Brook, a small tributary of the Arrow and its church is a small building with a nave dating from the twelfth century, with a thirteenth century chancel. The walls are made of old Lias rubble, although the south wall has been rebuilt.

St Giles

The church was heavily restored and partly rebuilt in 1862, mainly at the cost of the then rector. The chancel arch and roof were also replaced. The church was dedicated by Simon, bishop of Worcester, c.1125-1135, who declared it to be a chapelry of Salford, meaning the advowson belonged to the canons of Kenilworth. After the Dissolution the living remained in the gift of the Crown until 1916-1921, when it was ultimately acquired by the bishop of Coventry.

St Milburga

St Milburga, Wixford, is at the northern end of a lane which reaches up from the main street at the junction with the Wixford Road. Wixford is another small parish which lies across the valley of Hay Brook. The church was built in the twelfth century and consists of an undivided chancel and nave, a south chapel and a porch. The building is narrow considering its length, and seems to have been lengthened in the thirteenth century, possibly at both ends.

St Milburga

The south chapel with an arcade of two bays was built about 1400 by Thomas de Cruwe. The grey marble, low altar tomb of Thomas and his wife has one of the finest and best preserved brasses in the county and stands in the middle of the chapel. The church was restored in 1881, obscuring much of its earlier history. The south porch and western bell turret with two bells probably date to this work and the north doorway was probably blocked at the same time.

All photos on this page kindly contributed by Aidan McRae Thomson.

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