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.

North Hertfordshire (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
TL 10384 30358


HEXTON BARTON ROAD TL 1030 (North side)

8/1 Church of St. Faith 27.5.68 (C of E)

- II*

Parish church. Mid C13 (dedicated 1254) incorporating fabric of older church (dedicated 1108-14), S aisle may be earlier than N aisle; mid C15 W bay of nave, clearstorey end roofs, and W tower; renovated 1633; the 'rebuilding' of the church in 1824 by Joseph Andrew de Lautour and his wife Caroline Young involved reducing to about 1.5M high the S and E walls of the chancel, the N and E walls of the N chapel, the N wall of the N aisle and probably the S wall of the S aisle, rebuilding the upper parts of them in brick incorporating the old stone windows with their sills a little lower, facing the whole building with stucco and putting slate roofs on the chancel and N chapel, a new S porch, and replacing the spire by a low spike. In 1947 the NW angle of the tower collapsed, organ and W gallery taken down 1955 and a new bell enclosure was constructed in the base of the tower 1959. Flint rubble with limestone dressings, tower all stone with chalk ashlar facing to interior, S aisle and porch red bricks. All the above faced in stucco. Chancel, N chapel, and N aisle in red brick in English Bond now exposed. Metal low pitched roofs to nave and aisles but steeper slate roofs to porch, chancel and N chapel, tower now re-roofed and open to weather, the tower arch closed by a glazed screen. A tall church of chancel, N chapel of St. Nicholas (the E end made a vestry c.1820), nave aisles, S porch and W tower. The Nave has 2-bays chamfered and roll moulded N and S C13 pointed arcades with fat circular piers and imposts on S but quatrefoil plan piers and imposts on N. Smaller 2 orders pointed chamfered C15 openings at N and S in W bay; 3 2-lights clearstorey windows each side with cinquefoil head to each light. 3 and a 1/4 bays C15 open timber roof with king-posts on cambered tie-beams with curved braces from wallposts on 8 carved stone corbels. Moulded ridge-beam purlins, principal rafter and sub-principals. The latter have carved half-figures of angels holding shields next wall with deep moulded cornice. Ridge mouldings continue down E and W faces of king-posts ending in carved heads now gilded. Square flower bosses gilded at intersections of moulded timbers of roof. The roof and clearstorey correspond to the lengthened nave. Tall tower arch of 3 chamfered orders and jamb shaft with necking and cap. Early C19 box pews in W half of nave and N aisle. 2-decker clerk's and reading pulpit on N side and taller preaching pulpit on S side all c.1824 in oak with narrow-panelled sides, diagonal corners, plain wooden corner supports, and flying staircases of wood with slender iron baluster and wooden handrail. Stair to high pulpit double-curved on-plan, and handrail terminating in a wreath. N aisle has a 6-bays open timber roof probably C15, with moulded axial aid cross-members but renewed joists and boarding over. 3 windows on N, the central and E one of 3 pointed lights of equal height, the W one of 2-lights beyond gap in plinth for former N doorway. E window has trefoil heads to lights with hollow chamfered mullions. E half of N aisle occupied by panelled manor pew with floor at level of chancel, seats around interior, small fireplace at SE with C20 tiled fire surround and flue in former rood-loft stair. Entrance by a narrow tall pointed opening at E with gate. S aisle has 6-bays open timber roof similar to N aisle, a stone floor, and a pretty early C19 octagonal limestone font inlaid with Gothic designs and panels on shaft, bowl, and on inside and bottom of bowl. 2 2-lights S windows with ogee tracery and trefoils in head. Chancel 3-steps higher is internally remodelled in what Pevsner calls pre-archaeological Neo-Gothic. This starts at the elaborate 4-centred wide chancel arch with jamb shafts, small stiff-leaf capitals. Chancel covered by a pointed arched plaster vault with moulded ridge and wall ribs and 3 pairs of cross-ribs. Foliate bosses and corbels. Sanctuary marked by a cross-arch with wall shafts and cusped panelling to vault. Tall narrow Gothic niches within sanctuary with pointed heads on side walls and ogee heads flanking E window have painted lettering of Commandments, Creed, and Lord's Prayer. Niches and ceiling ribs picked out in colour. 3-light pointed C14 E window with cusped lights and trefoil in head has good stained glass of Christ in Majesty 1964 by Harry Stammers. 2 bays elaborately moulded C13 N arcade with column and imposts remodelled to suit raised floor level of chancel. Small pointed door to vestry. S side of chancel has buttresses marking 2 bays externally with a wide moulded doorway in the E bay, early C19 with jamb shafts, and a wide 3-lights Perp window in the W bay with hollow chamfered mullions and cusped heads. Inside, the window is flanked by wall monuments in white marble on black ground. To E William Young d.1824 with a Greek sarcophogus above a pilastered panel. To W Joseph Andrew de Lautour d.1845 (inscription says he 'rebuilt' the church), a seated female leaning on a sarcophogus with martial trophies behind. Signed, 'E Gaffin, Regent St London'. Narrower N chapel has plain pointed plaster vault with impost moulding. The W half is now occupied by the small organ with Gothick arches to pipe chest and paved finials. Natural oak with gilded pipes. 3-light cinquefoil N window flanked by wall monuments. To W Caroline Young de Lautour d.1869 a white marble scroll and cross on black slab, signed 'Currie 548 Oxford St London'. To E Francis de Lautour d.1807 probably erected by Caroline Young de Lautour after 1825, signed 'Gaffin Regent St London'. On E wall a hatchment above 2 wall monuments. N one Peter Taverner d.1601 and Frances his wife d.1636, framed panel of Purbeck marble with arched margin and 2 inset brass shields enamelled with strapwork surrounds. Arms of Taverner and Docwra. Wide clunch frame with inset grey panels and inscription to wife in bottom panel. Frame possibly added c.1636. On S a simple upright rectangle of white marble with edge beadmould, epitaph to Poytz family d.1701-1773. Uniform fine lettercutting so probably erected c.1773. To LH of opening on W wall giving access to manor pew a small wall memorial of white marble on black ground to Louisa de Lautour d.1845 and Frederic William her son d.1846, signed 'T Denman 83 Quadrant Regent St'. 3 stage mid C15 W tower, crenellated with string course at floor levels. Set-back buttresses with 3 offsets and staircase rising in SW corner with pointed doorways at each level. Slot window on S to middle stage, and 2-lights pointed bell opening on each face with dripmould. Projection at SE in angle with nave probably for stair to former W gallery. Remains of S jambs of W door and W window. Gabled S porch with gable parapet and pointed entrance. Plaster pointed vault. (VCH (1908)356: RCHM (1911)115-6: Kelly (1914)148: Whiteman (1936)118-22: Pevsner (1977)194 following research of Rev Keith Robinson: St Faith's Church, Hexton anon n.d. [after 1963] 6pp pamphlet available at church: Ashley Cooper (1982)16, 21: inf Mrs. Ashley Cooper).

Listing NGR: TL1038430358


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
St Faiths Church Hexton Guide
Doubleday, AH, The Victoria History of the County of Hertford, (1908)
Pevsner, N, Cherry, B, The Buildings of England: Hertfordshire, (1977)
'Kelly's Directory' in Kelly's Directory, (1914), 148
Inventory of the Historical Monuments of Hertfordshire, (1910)
Whiteman, (1936)


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: 15 Jul 2001
Reference: IOE01/04792/13
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr John Thomas. Source Historic England Archive
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