Heritage Category:
Listed Building
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Date first listed:
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Statutory Address:

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

Mid Devon (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SS 95429 12460



SS9512 FORE STREET, Tiverton 848-1/6/188 Church of St George 12/02/52


Church. Begun 1714-1716 to the designs of John James, the designer of St George, Hanover Square. Completed 1727-1733 after a period of use as a warehouse (Pevsner). Late C19 alterations. MATERIALS: Ham Hill ashlar with very fine joints; lead roof with lead rolls. PLAN: the church is sited on the corner of Fore Street and St Andrew Street with a show front on the north side (to Fore Street) with a small railed churchyard in front and quite a grand west end ensemble on the corner with St Andrew Street, setting off the late Victorian Town Hall opposite. The plan is a 5-bay galleried box with a shallow chancel, arranged symmetrically with opposed doors to the west and east. EXTERIOR: rusticated quoins, plinth, deep projecting eaves cornice with delicate dentil frieze. Round-headed windows have plain proud architraves. The 5-bay north side of the nave has outer bays with segmental-headed doorways with moulded architraves below large moulded stone cornices with ramshorn consoles on anthemion-carved corbels. Pitched stone paths across the churchyard lead to steps with ramped wreathed railings up to 2-leaf panelled doors with fielded panels. Segmental headed windows are probably late C19 reglazing with cast-iron glazing bars and small, square leaded panes with Art Nouveau borders. The gallery windows are taller with plain aprons to the centre three windows. Similar south elevation, south-east door renewed, south-west door has a pretty overlight with round-headed lights; good door furniture to the original doors including a metal drawbar to the south-west door. The 3-bay west end rises high above the level of St Andrew's Street on a stepped plinth. The centre bay is a pedimented projection with blind windows matching those on the north and south sides and smaller recesses on either side. Above the pediment there is a stone pilastered bellcote with louvred round-headed openings and a tent lead roof with a weathervane. The outer bays have windows matching those on the north and south sides. The east end has a large east window with no apron. INTERIOR: internal porches on the north side have fielded panels. Plastered barrel roof to nave with shallower barrels over the north & south galleries. The central roof is divided into 2 bays by plain ribs and has good plaster ceiling roses to every other bay. Ceiling roses but no ribs to the gallery roofs. The roof bay over the chancel is a panelled ceilure with decorated mouldings and miniature plaster ceiling roses - Pevsner reports cast-iron roof construction here, possibly a late C19 amendment. Portland stone square piers with recessed corners and moulded capitals support Ionic columns to the north and south galleries. Gallery frontals have timber fielded panels. Gallery walls are decorated with Ionic pilasters and a moulded cornice. The west gallery, which is very deep and supported on two cast-iron columns may have been altered but retains a timber cartouche on the frontal. Symmetrical staircases to the west gallery plus staircases at the east end on the north & south sides. The stairs are C18 with tapering turned balusters and a moulded handrail. The floor of the north & south galleries is squinted up to accommodate the height of the nave windows. Black and white tiled floor to nave. FITTINGS: the chancel is lined with good panelling with reeded Corinthian pilasters and an entablature with an egg and dart frieze and a dentil cornice. The panels contain pedimented recesses with console brackets, the two flanking the altar with the text of the ten commandments. Timber altar table, probably late C19 in a C17 style. Good C18 timber altar rails with curved corners and alternate barleysugar and tapering balusters. Timber pulpit dated 1878 in a classical style - a drum with a cornice of arabesques and acanthus with carved saints under round-headed niches all on a bracketed stem. Probably late C19 stone font in west end baptistry with an octagonal carved bowl. Late C19 benches with shaped ends to the nave. Gallery seating is tiered and may be C18 with panelled ends. East window in a painterly manner by Beer of Exeter is dated 1846. Several good C18 and early C19 white marble wall monuments including one to Henry Blagdon, d.1746. Patent vent system on nave walls consists of timber boxes and method of opening and closing external vents. HISTORY: Dunsford, writing in 1790 reports that the original pulpit stood at the west end of the central aisle. This is the best C18 church in Devon which compares well to the best examples of the period elsewhere in the country. It was begun, according to Pevsner, with a view to accommodating dissenters in Tiverton. Externally and internally it is very urbane and, as Pevsner states, it has a "harmonious interior little disturbed by later alterations". (Buildings of England: Pevsner N: Devon: London: 1989-: 810-811; Dunsford: Historical Memoirs of the Town and Parish of Tiverton: 1790-: 340).

Listing NGR: SS9542712459


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Dunsford, , Historical Memoirs of the Town and Parish of Tiverton, (1790), 340
Pevsner, N, Cherry, B, The Buildings of England: Devon, (1989), 810-811


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: 18 Jul 2004
Reference: IOE01/12844/32
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Malcolm Thirsk. Source Historic England Archive
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