Wilton Parish Church / St Mary And St Nicholas

5 Sep 1999
Wilton Parish Church, West Street, Wilton, Salisbury, Wiltshire, SP2 0DF
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St Mary And St Nicholas, West Street, Wilton, Salisbury, Wiltshire, SP2 0DF
Photograph (Digital)


This information is taken from the statutory List as it was in 2001 and may not be up to date.



1841-44. Architects T. H. Wyatt and D. Brandon for the Rt. Hon. Sir Sydney Herbert (later Lord Herbert of Lea), Secretary at War, and for his mother the Russian dowager countess of Pembroke. Cost ?20,000. Partly on site of mediaeval church of St Nicholas. North Italian Romanesque style based partly on the Churches of S. S. Pietro and Maria at Tuscania C11 and C12.

Built of ashlar with slate roofs. Basilican plan with 3 apses, nave and side aisles. Separate campanile 108 ft high. Wide parvis to "West" front with -steps (the church is orientated north-south in accordance with Russian tradition). West front tripartite central gabled part breaks forward.

Lombard arcading and banding to centre. Very ornate wheel window with tetramorph over arcade above central portal. Wall thickened for central portal of 4 main orders, heavily decorated, twisted colonnettes, outer standing on lions (see S Maria Tuscania, and Lombard churches in general). Flanking portals of 2 orders, small aedicules over with paired round-headed windows over string. Above the wheel window is a niche containing an angel with arms outstretched. The campanile is connected by a.5 bay cloister with ornate columns and caps. It is of 3 stages: a battered base, entered from "North", an elongated middle stage with arcaded wall buttresses with belfry over 1'5-light windows to each face) and a 3rd stage which has a small arcade of windows below and pairs of windows above and a heavily moulded eaves cornice. The main vessel has 8 bay side walls with Lombard band and arcading.

Venetian tracery to clerestory. Aedicule on "South" side with coffin containing bones disturbed for foundations. Shallow apses to aisles, deeper central apse over Pembroke family vault. - The interior has high arcades with triforium over, a clerestory and corbels to king post roof. Elaborately carved caps. The 2 side apses have flanking black marble columns from the Temple of Venus at Porto Venere (2nd century BC). "West" gallery. Narrow bay to crossing whose side arches are the same height as the arcade which has a reduced arch on each side. Crossing vault and arch into apse. Mosaics in apse by Gertrude Martin. A number of family monuments including white marble effigies of the founders of the church (designed by Wyatt, carved by J. B. Philips). Pulpit reached by C19 Roman opus alexandrinum. The pulpit itself is very interesting dating from 1256 and originating from S. Maria Maggiora.

The most important elements of the interior are the stained glass: French C12 and C13, some said to come from S. Denis and the Ste. Chapelle and German and Flemish C14-C16. Details of this and other treasures inside the church and out can be found in Pevsner and the Church guidebook.


Listing NGR: SU0946831274


This is part of the Series: IOE01/1666 IOE Records taken by Peter Read; within the Collection: IOE01 Images Of England


© Mr Peter Read. Source: Historic England Archive

This photograph was taken for the Images of England project

People & Organisations

Photographer: Read, Peter

Rights Holder: Read, Peter


Ashlar, Slate, Victorian Parish Church, Religious Ritual And Funerary, Church, Place Of Worship, Column, Unassigned, Building Component, Building, Steps, Transport, Pedestrian Transport Site, Bell Tower, Cloister, Commemorative Monument, Commemorative

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