A spectacular, colourful Victorian transept.
St Mary’s is a striking cruciform church whose chancel is nearly as long as its nave. The nave is mostly Norman and the chancel is primarily fourteenth century. The transept and tower are Early English. Various alterations were carried out around 1787 including the insertion of the plain mullion windows in the chancel. The south porch was heavily restored in the late nineteenth century and shelters the Norman south doorway.
The nave is furnished with eighteenth century box pews. There is also a Perpendicular font and high over the chancel arch at the east end hovers a lofty gallery with a balustraded front.
The south transept is rather wonderful. It a glorious homage of Victorian church art commissioned by William West, Director of the Great Western Railway in memory of his wife Clara Jane who died in 1888. The work was designed by Henry Holiday who was also responsible for illustrating Lewis Carroll’s the Hunting of the Snark.
The north transept is more sober. There are remains of thirteenth century lancets in the walls and it has several monuments to the Yate family including as sixteenth century brass to John Yate and his wife and their twelve children.
The chancel has elements from several periods. There are two fourteenth tomb recesses and a triple sedalia and piscina with a later alabaster relief cut to fit.