Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:


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Statutory Address:

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Teignbridge (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SX 95797 83311


KENTON CHURCH STREET (north side), Kenton SX 98 SE

6/213 Church of All Saints



Parish church. Cresswell and Pevsner date the building c. 1360-70 on the basis of the will of William Slighe, died 1379, in which he expresses a wish to be buried in theaisle he had recently built, "in elaquam ego ibidem de novo construxi", although it has been argued that this refers only to refurbishing and the date of the building may be later (Slader). Restoration and re-roofing of 1854 by David Mackintosh, some refurbishing and repair of the 1890s. Dressed red brecchia, brought to course, with some blocks of Beerstone and Beerstone dressings ; brecchia ashlar tower ; return walls of porch and east end of south aisle are stone rubble. Plan: Nave, chancel, west tower, 7-bay north and south aisles (1 bay to the chancel), south-west porch, north-east vestry. Perpendicular, of an unusually grand character, the church could be one build ; 1866 vestry. Exterior: Large and impressive with embattled aisles with polygonal turrets (q.v. Kenn). Most of the window tracery is C19, of an early Perpendicular character. Chancel with diagonal buttresses with set-offs ; 6-light east window with C19 tracery, king mullion and carved label stops ; 4-light C19 Perpendicular windows to north and south sides ; chamfered 2-centred arched priest's doorway on south side ; 1866 north-east-vestry with parapet, stack with stone shaft, north door and 2-light east window. The south side of the church, facing the road, is noticeably the show front with carved detail not used on the north side. Beerstone coping to the battlementing ; a carved cornice moulding ; set-back buttresses at south east and south west corners ; buttresses to each bay with set-offs crowned with tall pinnacles and grotesques and 4-light Perpendicular windows with C19 tracery. A projecting 5- sided embattled stair turret divides the eastern bays, the turret with a carved cornice and grotesques. The east wall has been rebuilt in re-constituted stone with a 3-light C19 Perpendicular east window and 3-light C19 Perpendicular west window. Grand embattled 2-storey porch in the first headed bay from the west with set-back buttresses. The battlementing has statue niches and the porch is decorated with gargoyles. The off-centre square-headed outer doorway is richly carved with carved spandrels and large projecting medieval carved label stops. Above the doorway an unusual large carved canopy niche is flanked by 1-light cusped windows with a common hoodmould and label stops ; holy water stoup to left of doorway on the exterior wall. The north side is also embattled (battlementing replaced with reconstituted stone) but plainer, the bays with 7 4-light C19 Perpendicular windows divided by buttresses with set-offs with a 3-sided battlemented north west stair turret with access from the interior of the church ; blocked window at west end with a later blocked doorway. Imposing 3-stage battlemented tower with set-back buttresses and an internal north- west stair turret. Corner pinnacles with canopied niches containing presumably C15 sculptured figures - a rare survival. The west face has a moulded west doorway with cushion stops and a hoodmould, a 4-light C19 Perpendicular west window and a canopied statue niche with an ogee arch. There is a similar statue niche on the south face which also has a 1-light cusped bellringer's window and a clock in a stone frame. Grand 3-light traceried belfry windows with transoms, masonry much renewed in the C19 and C20. Interior: The porch, originally vaulted, has a flat roof, a richly -carved inner doorway with large projecting carved label stops and a remodelled canopied statue niche above. Lofty interior to church with plastered walls ; no chancel arch ; tower arch with panelled soffit and C19 stencilling above the arch; 7-bay Perpendicular Beerstone arcades ; the piers with corner shafts, boldly carved foliage capitals and moulded arches. Shafted rear arches to the windows ; moulded doorway with cushion stops to the room over the porch. Open wagon roof to nave and chancel probably 1865; lean-to aisle roof of 1854 designed by D. Mackintosh. The nave is dominated by the impressive ll-bay rood screen, the heraldry suggesting a date during Peter Courtenay's Bishopric, 1478-1486 (Bond and Camm), the coving and rood loft parapet replaced by Herbert Read under the direction of Bligh Bond in the late C19 and early C20, re-instating the medieval proportions of the screen and quite unlike the usual survivals. Medieval wainscot paintings of saints ; some ancient colour on the carving and apostles carved in niches on the centre doorframe (q.v. North Bovey); early C20 silver rood by Henry Wilson, formerly on the High Altar at Exeter Cathedral. 4-bay parclose screens with square-headed 4-light openings have heart- shaped crocketted cresting. The chancel has probably C19 sedilia under a simple arch, a 2-tier probably medieval aumbry and a trefoil-headed hogioscope into the north chancel chapel. Massive carved timber tryptich reredos erected in 1843, carved " under the direction of Mr Kempe" (TEDAS), some carving by Sebastian Zwinke of Oberammergau. Altar rail of 1907, designed by Bligh Bond ; choir stalls with poppyhead ends 1865 ; monumental relief of the raising of Lazarus by Stevens on the north wall. North parclose door made up of carved late C15/early C16 bench ends. The nave has an interesting C15 timber drum pulpit on a wineglass stem, richly carved and largely reconstructed by Herbert Read to the designs of Bligh Bond after Baring- Gould found it in pieces. Octagonal carved font of 1844; set of 1865 square-headed bench ends with quatrefoil decoration. The north chancel chapel was formerly the family pew of Oxton Manor House and retains some good, probably late C17 dado panelling with strapwork and the remains of a piscina. Monuments Numerous ledger stones used as floor slabs. Large early C17 wall monument to Dulcabella Hodges, died 1628, in the north chancel chapel with a seated figure, her head resting on one hand with a weeper. Inscription tablet with Corinthian columns and a cornice to Sir Nicholas Martyn, died 1653 on south wall of the chapel which also has a 3-bay early C19 monument on the east wall to members of the Swete family and a white marble wall tablet with an urn to John Swete, died 1831, signed J. Kendall, Exon. Numerous early C19 wall tablets in the nave ; mosaic of the good Shepherd on the north wall commemorating Frederick Marshall, churchwarden 1914-20. Stained Glass East window said by Pevsner to be Clayton and Bell ; north and south chancel windows by Drake of Exeter with memorial date of 1891. South aisle window quarry glass and head tracery glass in north aisle by Beer (1865), grisaille glass in east window by north chancel chapel probably also by Beer. West window "painted by Bannstyre (sic) of Edinburgh" (TEDAS) ; some fragments of medieval glass in the north aisle windows. An outstanding church, both externally and for its fittings.

Bond, F.Bligh and Camm, Dom Bede, Roodscreens and Roodlofts (1909), vol. II. pp 325- 327. Cresswell, Beatrix F, Notes on the Churches of the Deanery of Kenn Devon (1912), pp. 11-122. Pevsner, South Devon (1952). Slader, J. M. The Churches of Devon (1968) p. 61-62. 'The Church of All Saints, Kenton', Transactions of the Exeter Diocesan Architectural Society, 3rd series, 1 (1899) pp. 108-118. Devon Nineteenth Century Churches Project.

Listing NGR: SX9579483310


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Bligh Bond, F, Bede Camm, D, Roodscreens and Roodlofts, (1909), 325-327
Cresswell, B F, Notes on Devon Churches in the Deanery of Kenn, (1912), 11-122
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: South Devon, (1952)
Slader, J M , The Churches of Devon, (1968), 108-118
'Transactions of the Exeter Diocesan Architectural Society 3rd Series' in Transactions of the Exeter Diocesan Architectural Society 3rd Series, (1899)


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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Date: 01 Sep 2004
Reference: IOE01/12252/37
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Robert Vickery. Source Historic England Archive
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