St Mary, Riverhead, Kent - 13th September 2008

The nave was built in 1831 to the design of the architect Decimus Burton. 

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

There are no arcades, the plaster rib-vault ceiling covering a wide and wide space unencumbered with pillars. 

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

The church contains some nice stained glass windows, including this one over the south door of the Good Shepherd. The rest of the windows may be viewed by clicking here or on the image below.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

The most easterly window in the north wall of the nave depicts St George and was given in memory of Samuel Bevington (d. 1896).  It has fantastic rich colours and is by John Wimbolt, whose trademark is the black greyhound.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

The north chapel also has nice windows, with a colourful window depicting St Nicholas, St Mary and St Martin of Tours (above them Joan of Arc on the left and St Edith of Kemsing on the right) in the east wall.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

In the north wall there is a pair of lancets surmounted by a small circular window.  The windows depict the Resurrection, the Baptism of Christ, the Ascension and the Temptation.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent
St Mary, Riverhead, KentSt Mary, Riverhead, Kent

There is a triplet of lancet windows above the altar filled with glass by Kempe.  The Kemp trademark of a Wheatsheaf is said to be unusually black in this instance - however I was unable to spot it!  This glass was given to the church in 1905 by friends and parishioners in memory of Canon Burn-Murdoch, the first vicar.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

The south wall of the chancel has a single lancet depicting the nativity.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

The chancel and Sanctuary were added in 1882 in what the church guide describes as Early English style (but is actually exuberant Victorian gothic, the lancet windows being the main Early English echo) designed by Sir Arthur Blomfield.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

A closer look at the reredos - apologies for the slight blurring.  The central panel depicting Christ in Majesty is an Italian glass mosaic by Salviati, a gift to the church from Canon Burn-Murdoch.  The gold background had at one time been painted blue, however many hours of patient work by members of the congregation has restored it to its original condition.   The two panels showing angels are tiled and were added during the incumbency of Canon Bell.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

And an even closer view of one of the panels.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

The northern wall of the chancel is decorated with tiles depicting Old Testament prophets.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

Here is a view looking back towards the west door and the gallery containing the pipe organ.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

The font - a rather pleasing design - especially the faces over each of the supporting columns.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

A final view of the interior of this interesting building.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

Back outside, here is a view of the building from the south which is largely obscured by yew bushes.

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

A final view along the south elevation (behind the bushes!).  Notice how the south porch obstructs one of the windows - surely an afterthought?

St Mary, Riverhead, Kent

Our thanks to the nice ladies who made us welcome.  It was very gratifying to be able to view a church that is normally kept locked.

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