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


Ordnance survey map of CHURCH OF ST SWITHIN
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Statutory Address:

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

Cherwell (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SP 57737 17816


MERTON SP5717 10/99 Church of St. Swithun 07/12/66 GV I Church. C13 and C14, restored 1865-72 by C. Buckeridge. Limestone rubble, partly rendered, with ashlar dressings; lead and Welsh-slate roofs. Nave, chancel, south aisle, west tower and south porch. Rendered chancel has a large 3-light east window, originally C14 but altered to have a 4-centred arch with Perpendicular tracery; to south are 3 tall 2-light windows, with transoms and Perpendicular tracery, plus a priest's door. Wide C14 south aisle, with a moulded parapet, has a fine 3-light east window with flowing tracery and, to south, 2 early C14 windows of 2 lights below quatrefoils and a 3-light Perpendicular window with a shallow triangular arch; the C14 porch has an outer arch with continuous moulding, and shelters a more elaborately moulded south door below a C15 panel containing 3 image niches (identical to one in the same position at Charlton-on-Otmoor). The north side of the nave has 2-light C14 windows, re-set following the demolition of the north aisle. The C13 tower of 3 stages with a C15 panelled parapet has stepped clasping buttresses to the bottom stage, lancets, and 2-light bell-chamber openings with Y-tracery. Interior: chancel has, to south, a fine C14 triple-sedilia and piscina with cusped ogee canopies and crocketted pinnacles, plus a matching canopied recess to north; to south also an ogee-headed tomb recess with pierced cusping. The elaborate carved roof corbels are also C14 and match those on the chancel arch. 4-bay early C14 nave arcade has octagonal piers and round capitals with arches of 2 chamfered orders and head stops; a similar 3-bay arcade is now built into the north wall. The C13 tower arch is of 2 unchamfered orders. The south aisle contains a C14 sedile and piscina, elaborate image niches flanking the east window with double-cusped canopies, and a canopied holy water stoup by the south door. 5-bay C15 nave roof has curved braces with traceried spandrels, short posts from the tie-beam to moulded purlins, and has one carved boss below each tie-beam. Fittings include C17 bench pews, 2 C16/C17 communion tables, a C17 pedestal pulpit with carved arched panels, and a fine set of C17 stalls with elaborate poppyheads, brought from Exeter College Chapel and now in the south aisle. Mahogany tower screen is from the priory Church of St. John, Clerkenwell. C12 tub font with C17 cover. Monuments include a large marble wall monument to John Doyley (died 1593) with kneeling figures in a Renaissance arched recess, and a painted monument with Tuscan columns, obelisk finials and mutilated strapwork cresting to Elizabeth Poole (died 1621). Also in the chancel are various C17 and C18 memorials, mostly ledgers, to members of the Harrington family, and, in the tower, several small late C17 and early C18 wall monuments to members of the Vaughan family. V.C.H.: Oxfordshire, Vol.V, pp.231-3; Buildings of England: Oxfordshire, pp.700-1).

Listing NGR: SP5773617819


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

Legacy System number:
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Books and journals
Pevsner, N, Sherwood, J , The Buildings of England: Oxfordshire, (1974), 700-1
Salzman, L F, The Victoria History of the County of Oxford, (1957), 231-3


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: 21 Mar 2003
Reference: IOE01/08776/28
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Nicholas Paul. Source Historic England Archive
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