Day 3: Lifton, St. Mary’s – Quinquennial Inspection

Pevsner uncompromisingly states this church is in a ‘small and otherwise unremarkable village’.

Uncertain of what we might find on arrival, Paul and I travelled across Devon to the Cornish border, in the Mini stocked with the regular thermos of coffee and toast to arrive at 10am.

Straight up onto the roofs. The roofers were on site for us clearing the gutters, Jim and Tom were just finishing and it was good to have their help to the best places to gain access to the roofs.

Up the tower we went, looking into the bell chamber and the ringing room on the way.

Four beautifully craggy pinnacles greeted us on the tower roof. I was thankful for a less than windy day! The church is almost entirely granite and being so high as of 12th century this stone has weathered to a spectactuar texture enhanced by the  style of carving of the time.

It was a relief to get inside and start the interior inspection. The ground was frozen and although slightly warmer inside our energies were starting to wain by the time we’d done the 3rd round – ceilings and walls, windows and doors, followed by fixtures ad fittings and monuments.

This stone tablet hung some what ominously over the main entrance and requires immediate attention!:

We replenished with lunch and a pint in the local pub before finishing with 3 walks round the building and grounds inspecting the churchyard, pathways and walls.

Job done. Back to the Heighway studio for a whisky and the writing up!

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