Monument record MCC7020 - Church of St Barnabas, Great Tey


The central tower is of four stages. The lower three stages of the tower are most likely pre-Conquest; the top stage is Norman.


Grid reference Centred TL 8920 2578 (31m by 19m) (FCE)
Map sheet TL82NE
County ESSEX


Type and Period (4)

Full Description

Lower 3 stages of the tower are Saxon; top stage is Norman. Rest of the church is C14.<1> Walls are flint rubble mixed with Roman brick and some freestone; dressings are limestone and the roofs are covered with tiles and lead. RCHM dates central tower and remains of nave S arcade to early C12 (in fact lower part of tower is pre-Conquest - see MCC7019). Early in C14 the chancel was rebuilt and later in this century the N and S transepts were built. The tower S arch was inserted in C15. Greater part of the nave and both side aisles were pulled down in 1829 and the W wall built. Features and fittings include: C14, C15 windows; C14 doorway in the chancel (photo in RCHM); C14 wall plates in the chancel roof; part of the C15 roof of the N transept is visible in the modern tower staircase; bell chamber in tower floor is supported on C15 timbers altar in the chancel, Purbeck marble with consecration crosses, possibly for insertion in larger slab; chest in N porch, iron-bound, probably C16; 3 C13 coffin lids outside the S porch and nave; early C15 font; early C14 piscina in chancel, C14 piscina in S transept; 4 bench ends, C15, incorporated in reading desk; early C14 sedilia in chancel, almost completely restored; C12 carved capitals from nave built into walls at vicarage, and one is in the garden. RCHM has photos of the church.<2><3> There was a larger nave W of the tower in the Norman period. C15 transepts open off the tower (see MCC7019 for discussion of these in relation to the pre-Conquest church). Graded Aib by Rodwell.<4> Chancel, C14, retains its original roof, 7 cants, plastered.<5>

Site Assessment (Rodwell & Rodwell, 1977)= "The axial tower is a remarkable example of its period."<1> Dampness is a problem in N transept and ground level externally has been lowered a little at some time. A concrete apron has recently been laid around the S side. The graveyard has suffered extensive clearance and is now open and devoid of vegetation.<4><6>

Seven digital photographs taken July 2016.<7>

Sources/Archives (8)

  • --- AP: unknown. unknown. TL 891253 43/6.
  • <1> DESC TEXT: unknown. 1960 0nwards. SMR form unknown.
  • <2> DESC TEXT: RCHME. 1922. An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Essex - Volume 3. Vol 3, pp.129-131.
  • <3> Monograph: Bettley, James and Pevsner, Nikolaus. 2007. The buildings of England: Essex. pp.420-421.
  • <4> Monograph: Rodwell, Warwick J with Rodwell, KA. 1977. Historic Churches: a wasting asset. p.120.
  • <5> DESC TEXT: Department of the Environment. 1982. List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest: Colchester Rural. p.195.
  • <6> AP: Tyler, Sue. 2000. CP/00/40/10.
  • <7> Photograph: Tipper, J.. 2016. Photographs of St Barnabas Church, Great Tey. Digital.

Finds (6)

Protected Status/Designation

Related Monuments/Buildings (4)

Related Events/Activities (0)

Record last edited

Sep 13 2016 2:51PM

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