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


Ordnance survey map of CHURCH OF ST MARY THE VIRGIN
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Statutory Address:

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

Mid Suffolk (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
TM 00854 62778


TM 06 SW, 4/211

WETHERDEN, CHURCH LANE, Church of St. Mary the Virgin




Parish church, mainly mid C14 and c.1500. C14 tower. Mainly flint rubble; the south aisle has early C16 flushed flint with random squared limestone and brick. The upper chancel walling is in early C16 red brick. Freestone dressings. Nave and aisle roofs leaded, the chancel roof plaintiled. Nave, chancel, south aisle, west tower. A small vestry of C14 to north of chancel. Some good work of c.1330-1350 in the chancel. The east gable shows the former roofline: diagonal buttresses with enrichment at the head, a reticulated- traceried 4-light east window with an image niche above, and the carved base of a gable cross. The vestry is integral and has a slit window with carved spandrels. Moulded south chancel doorway. Heavily hoodmoulded piscina with an enriched finial and blind tracery; a carved human head looks towards the altar. Plain sedilia. On the north wall opposite is a good contemporary Easter sepulchre. Large late C14 tower with main features on west side: moulded doorway, the hoodmould with good human heads carved beneath. Image niches flanking the doorway and another above. West window deeply recessed with good tracery. 2-light belfry windows and grotesque gargoyles beneath embattled parapets. Major early C16 alterations: the south aisle built for Sir John Sulyard in 5 bays of which the western bay contains a porch. Over the doorway is a frieze containing carved coats of arms. A continuous frieze around the base of the aisle wall; flushwork arcading is interspersed with panels bearing coats of arms.

The nave roof was rebuilt at this time, and possibly its outer walls also. Fine hammerbeam roof in 9 bays. Each truss has a pair of hammerbeams with pendant posts, from which rise arch braces to a tier of false hammerbeams. From the backs of these rise further arch braces to a collar beam and king post. All main members are moulded and there are seated canopied figures beneath both wallposts and hammerposts. The aisle has a similarly rich but simpler roof of arch-braced camber-beams with much cresting. Arch-bracing in both roofs has rich and varied carving, and bosses bearing shields or foliage are beneath intersections. Winged angels mainly at the east end of the aisle. The chancel roof is of single true hammerbeam type in four bays, of similar date and quality. C15 octagonal limestone font bearing shields on the bowl, much restored; C17 oak pyramid cover. A set of 13 poppyhead benches to north side of nave, with animal figures seated upon the buttresses: much restored, and the matching set to the south are C19 copies. In the aisle are box pews of c.1800. A fine monument in the aisle to Sir John Sulyard (d.1574) of limestone and marble. Over the tombchest are 4 kneeling figures, and his achievement is framed by an entablature on Corinthian columns. Beside it is a marble monument without inscription of C15/C16. The C19 octagonal pulpit contains oak C15 traceried panels perhaps from a rood screen. In the chancel floor is a slab with brass to John Daniell, d.1584. In the nave are 3 others whose brasses are missing, and in the aisle at least two others. In the aisle are 4 painted boards with achievements. For details of heraldic evidence for construction dates of porch/aisle (c.1484 - ante. 1520), see The Buildings of England: Suffolk: Sir N. Pevsner: Penguin.

Listing NGR: TM0085462778


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: Suffolk, (1961)


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

Images of England

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Date: 02 May 2007
Reference: IOE01/14600/20
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Alan Francis Polaine. Source Historic England Archive
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