Building record MCC4361 - Church of St Mary the Virgin, Wick Road, Layer Marney


Early C16 rebuilt church, containing very fine C14 and C16 monuments, C16 wall painting and early C16 stained glass.


Grid reference Centred TL 9282 1741 (34m by 28m)
Map sheet TL91NW
County ESSEX


Type and Period (1)

Full Description

Early C16 rebuilt church, containing very fine C14 and C16 monuments, C16 wall painting and stained glass.<1>

The Church of St Mary the Virgin is located to the SW of the gatehouse (built c.1520) and contemporary with it. Brick, the W tower with blue diapering. The rest of the church retains fragments of plastering - most of this is later but the plastering around the windows appears to be original and intended to imitate stone. The plaster of the hoodmoulds was painted to imitate the terracotta that adorns the house. The tower has diagonal buttresses, battlements and polygonal stair-turret. The N aisle's east end forms a chantry chapel of the Marneys. Chancel and N aisle E end restored by C.F. Hayward, 1870-1, the nave by Chancellor & Son 1911.<1><2>

Large C16 wall painting of St Christopher, which includes an early depiction of an angler.<2>

Stained glass figure of St Peter, early C16, and four heraldic medallions, in N Chapel E window.

Effigies and tomb-chests of Sir William Marney (died 1414), in alabaster<2>, of Henry, 1st Lord Marney (d. 1523), in Catacleuse (a black Cornish stone) and with an elaborate canopy<2>, of John, 2nd Lord Marney (d. 1525), of Robert Cammocke of Duke's (d. 1585), Nicholas Corsellis (d. 1674) surmounted by a similar monument to Sur Caesar Child (d. 1753) and his sister Frances Corsellis (d. 1759), and mural brass of Thomas Hermitage St John Boys (d. 1897). In the SE corner of the churchyard, large chest-tomb of Amy Chambers (d. 1752), in N. aisle until 1911.

Fifteen digital photographs taken July 2016.<3>

Two small archaeological test-pits (TP1 and TP2) were excavated by Colchester Archaeological Trust in 2019 inside the Church. They both measured 0.5m x 0.5m and were excavated to a depth of 1m below floor level. Two layers were identified in TP1. Concrete and made-up ground beneath the tiles of the existing floor (L1, c.0.2m thick) sealed a layer of silty clay with frequent flecks of mortar, fragments of CBM and small and medium stones (L2, over 0.48m thick). A piece of window glass was recovered from this layer. A modern brick wall foundation cut directly across the middle of this test-pit, directly below the concrete floor base. Neither the base of the wall or the base of L2 were encountered before excavation of the test-pit was halted at a
depth of 1m. L1 (0.38m thick) and L2 (over 0.32m thick) were also identified in TP2. However, they were separated by a spread of sand. Some fragments of medieval mortar and floor tile were found in L2.<4>

Sources/Archives (5)

  • --- Photograph: unknown. 1970-1993 c.. ECC Historic Buildings Photo Print Archive. 38 frames, 1991.
  • --- Photograph: Andrews, D. 2004. Col Slides.
  • <1> Monograph: Bettley, James and Pevsner, Nikolaus. 2007. The buildings of England: Essex. pp.529-531.
  • <3> Photograph: Tipper, J.. 2016. Photographs of Church of St Mary the Virgin, Layer Marney. Digital.
  • <4> Evaluation Report: Parmenter, Pip. 2019. Archaeological evaluation by test-pitting at St. Mary the Virgin Church, Layer Marney, Essex, CO5 9UX. CAT Report 1463.

Finds (0)

Protected Status/Designation

Related Monuments/Buildings (3)

Related Events/Activities (1)

Record last edited

Apr 8 2020 12:28PM

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