Church of St Giles
Parish church. Circa 1300, refenestrated C15, tower early C16, 1858-1859 reroofed and north wall rebuilt, 1867 restored and vestry added. Random rubble chert and local grey sandstone, Ham stone dressings, slate roofs, coped verges, crenellated parapets to aisles and chapel, renewed in concrete on south side. West tower, three bay aisled nave, north and south chapels, north-east vestry, chancel.
Crenellated three stage tower, pinnacles and gargoyles, diagonal buttresses rising to string courses, two-light bell-opening, string course lancet, three-light west window with continuous hoodmould, deeply moulded west doorway, C19 double doors, stair turret with weather vane centre of south face; two-light west window to buttressed south aisle, one three-light left and two right of single storey diagonally buttressed porch, parapet with gabled centre, moulded arched opening, moulded pointed arch inner doorway, C19 door; projecting south chapel, four-light mullioned window without hoodmould, three-light east window and blocked priest's door, lancet on south side of diagonally buttressed chancel, three-light east window, two-light window to vestry with door on north front, three-light east widow to chapel, four-light mullioned north window without hoodmould, remains of rood stair projection, three two-light windows between stepped buttresses, two-light west end.
Interior: rendered with exposed jambs to windows. Three bay arcade of circular piers, pointed arches chamfered in two orders; chancel arch corbelled out on north wall over double respond and cut on south wall; unequal arches to chapels, chamfered with leaf band capitals to north chapel, moulded to aisle, moulded with colonnettes on north side; four-centred tower arch chamfered in three orders. Cinquefoil-headed piscina in north chapel; door and remains of rood stair. C19 roofs; archbraced with wall plate to nave and chancel, compartment ceilings to aisles.
Recumbant effigy of mid C14 knight set into four-centred arch niche in south wall; possibly the figure of Sir John de Meriet, died 1391; Grecian-style white marble and slate tablet to Josiah Eastern of Hele, died 1848, and other members of the family signed by Williams, 30 Eastern Road, London, C19 brass in chancel to the Adair family of Heatherton Park (qv). Black and white marble tablet to John Petten, died 1801, and family signed by E Gaffin, Regent Street. London.
Fine early C18 pulpit carved in high relief from St Mary's, Taunton, Perpendicular style font of c1870. Choir stalls designed by Bligh Bond 1912. Late C19 stone reredos, restored and figures of the evangelists designed by W.D Caröe added 1926. Organ by Aorgan and Smith of Brighton, installed 1913.
Stained glass, West window by firm Burridge of Wellington; another window by Bell of Bristol; window in north aisle by Gerald Coles, 1967, in memory of Hugh Easton died 1965, artist in stained glass, and James Easton died 1871, engineer.
In 1387 a chantry chapel was founded at St Giles by Sir John de Meriet.
(Photograph in NMR).
Listing NGR: ST1730222979