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


Ordnance survey map of CHURCH OF THE HOLY INNOCENTS
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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Statutory Address:

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

Tewkesbury (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SO 79641 19548


HIGHNAM HIGHNAM VILLAGE SO 7819-7919 9/53 Church of the Holy Innocents 10-1-55 GV I Parish church. 1849-51 by H. Woodyer for T. Gambier-Parry, vestry enlarged 1863 for same. Roughly-coursed, squared lias, Bath-stone dressings and spire, tiled roof. Western tower, 5-bay aisled nave, south porch with room over, chancel, 2-bay chapel to south, vestry to north. Built in Decorated style. South facade: 3-stage tower, with 4-stage plinth: square set corner buttresses. Boarded door at foot on right, shouldered arch, in slight projection with lean- to stone top: lancets to stairs. String course above first stage: lancet over, relieving arch across facade: gabled offsets to buttresses, blind tracery, ballflower decoration. Decorative band to top second stage, two 2-light windows, wooden louvres, between clasping projecting corners; corbelled eaves. Octagonal broach spire above, central 2-light window in tall dormer, crocketed gable, corner pinnacles. Corner pinnacles to tower, ballflower decoration, with flying buttress disappearing below arch across corner, with further pinnacle over. Roll moulding to arrises of spire, leaf decoration onto surface adjoining, lucarnes near top, floriate apex with iron weathervane. South aisle, simple plinth, square-set buttresses to bays, 2-light windows with hoodmould extended as stringcourse at springing level: moulded stone eaves. Porch in second bay, diagonal corner buttresses, quarter octagon for stair rear left return. Arched doorway up 2 stone steps, double wooden screen doors. Carved panel above with pierced tracery over, lancet each side, all under relieving arch, parapet gable, floriate cross on cross-gablet apex. Clerestorey 5 quatrefoils with blind tracery below each side: moulded eaves; at east end 2-light oak dormer, with crocketed pinnacles and decorative barge boards. Parapet gables, double-block apex to east. Chapel projects to east: boarded door with trefoil head up 4 stone steps on left return. Square-set buttress left end, angled right, 2-stage plinth, string course at sill level, 2 lancets over: moulded eaves. Parapet gables, cross-gablet apices. Chancel set back on right, 3-stage plinth, square-set corner buttress, panelled gable to top. Six-light window, ogee-heads, line of quatrefoils over with wavy hoodmould. Parapet gable, floriate cross to apex. East end, 2-light window to chapel, 3-light to chancel, both with hoodmoulds; trefoil over latter in circle. Buttresses to north- east corner as south-east. Set back on north vestry, plain plinth, low eaves, 2 lancets, boarded door up 2 stone steps, further lancet, buttress, 3-light window with angled corner buttress. Hipped roof over up to higher centre: semi-octagon against chancel with spirelet as stair turret; triangular dormer with wooden tracery, original parapet gable with chimney on apex, further parapet gable to right. North face: quatrefoil only to chancel, vestry with diagonal corner buttresses, 2 square set between, 3- light windows in end bays only: boarded door down stone steps to boiler room below. Above rose window in gable, hipped roof below. Nave and tower as south side, but no door or relieving arch to tower, porch replaced by double boarded door up one stone step, 4 blind quatrefoils over, with wavy hoodmould. Interior: nave; Minton tiles to floor with brass insets. Clustered columns, leaf capitals: string course below clerestorey windows, leaf corbels to moulded ribs supporting scissor-braced trusses: 2 pairs purlins, no ridge piece, slight windbraces, exposed rafters: arrises chamfered and painted. Tall tower arch, no capitals: lowest stage vaulted. Marble columns to chancel arch, floriate capitals: wooden screen, 2 lights each side doorway, moulded beam with crossover: brass candlesticks on dado rail. Above painting of Last Judgement, haloes raised and gilt. Eastern bay of nave roof painted: dormers added to give light to wall painting. Aisles: south side painted green dado, decorative painting and texts on stone colour above: ornate iron screen to chapel at east end: iron canopy to south door. North aisle with green dado, painted hangings above, with procession of figures under eaves: stone grille to organ chamber. Chancel, floor more ornate, with brass grilles to part of east end: walls fully painted. On north corbelled balcony for organ with ballflower decoration to arch over: aumbry with ogee head, leaf crockets and finial. On south arch to chapel, decorative wrought-iron screen, angel corbels; sedilia with marble columns, ogee heads with pierced tracery over. Ornately carved reredos, 3 panels each side centre, in 2 tiers, crocketed pinnacles. Panelled painted boarded barrel vault over, angels and shields on wallplate. Chapel walls painted, boarded ceiling above rafters, centre niche south side, pierced tracery top, containing bust of Isabella, died 1848, first wife of Thomas Gambier-Parry. Octagonal carved stone font, on stem with open arches around, on painted alabaster colonettes. Whole up 2 stone steps off raised platform: 3-stage wooden canopy above. Octagonal stone pulpit on open arcading, leaf carving to sides, stone steps, brass handrail added 1905. Original brass candelabra in aisles and chapel, 7 brass candle standards in pews, large cast- iron radiator covers, all by Hardman. Stained glass to north aisle by Wailes, south aisle by Hardman to designs by Augustus Welby Northmore Pugin, west and chapel windows by O'Connor, east window 1859 by Clayton and Bell. Wall paintings in spirit fresco by T. Gambier-Parry, over chancel arch begun 1859, north aisle 1870-'80. Sir Hubert Parry practised on the organ. Goodhart-Rendel considered church 'fulfilment of the Pugin ideal'. (D. Verey, Gloucestershire, the Vale and the Forest of Dean, 1970; also in Country Life, CXLIX, 1971; V.C.H. Gloucestershire, Vol X, 1972; T.J. Fenton, A. History and Guide to the Church of the Holy Innocents, 1985)

Listing NGR: SO7964719548


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Fenton, TJ , A History and Guide to the Church of the Holy Innocents, (1985)
Page, W, The Victoria History of the County of Gloucester, (1972)
Verey, D , The Buildings of England: Gloucestershire 2 The Vale and The Forest of Dean, (1970)
'Country Life' in Country Life, , Vol. 149, (1971)


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

Images of England was a photographic record of every listed building in England, created as a snap shot of listed buildings at the turn of the millennium. These photographs of the exterior of listed buildings were taken by volunteers between 1999 and 2008. The project was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Date: 24 Mar 2006
Reference: IOE01/15370/04
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Terence J Devine. Source Historic England Archive
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