Kington, Herefordshire – St Mary

On 30 September we drove across the border as Julie wanted to visit Lockdown Books in the small town of Kington – It is only open three days a week, and is a radical bookshop with not a lot of stock. He’d responded to a Julie email about accessible bookshops, and we got a lovely welcome. He’s obviously enjoying running it, so why not!

We walked up to the parish church of St Mary’s – SO 291566 and were surprised to see so many churches parked outside. It wasn’t a funeral, the flower arrangers were getting sorted for harvest. I couldn’t find a guidebook. The benefice has an excellent website – – which gives a very good piece about the town, but not much on the history of the church. Herefordshire churches have a good tourism website

There is an C18 lych gate that I failed to photo. The tower is Norman, the nave C12, chancel C13, south aisle C14 and the north aisle is C19. It certainly feels a large, open church, one where the eye is drawn upwards.

A rather splendid Norman font, and even more splendid harvest flowers.

The Vaughan tomb is a beautiful piece of alabaster. Here lie Thomas Vaughan of Hergest Court who was killed at the Battle of Banbury in 1469 (part of the War of the Roses), and his wife Ellen Gethin, known as Ellen the Terrible. Apparently it is believed she killed her husband John by piercing his heart with an arrow as an act of revenge for his killing of her brother David. The tomb is decorated on all four sides so it is thought it originally stood in the centre of the chapel, before being moved to a corner. Neither of them may have been lovely people, but their tomb is rather nice.

Some nice windows. Three Kings (Epiphany) is a little different to normal. Jesus healing the sick. Simeon and Candlemas.

Some harvest displays to finish with – thank you ladies for your skill and your welcome.

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