WYBUNBURY

Grid Ref: SJ 700 498
5 April 2005

 

Church tower spacer Lych  gate
The tower of Wybunbury      Lych Gate with the Swan Inn beyond
Signs   Red Lion
Unusual collection of signs   Red Lion viewed from the church yard

 

When Pevsner first published his volume on Cheshire he was able to describe the church of St. Chad at Wybunbury (pronounced Wynbury). The main body of the church at the time dated from 1892-3 and was built by James Brooks. This church was built to replace a Georgian one that replaced the mediaeval church. The five stage Perpendicular tower has on its west end five statues including two bishops. The chancel had been demolished when Pevsner wrote but now the nave has been demolished too. The entrance to the tower from the east has been secured with new stonework and a door. The ground has proved unstable for centuries. One commonly associates the dedication to St. Chad with wells and springs. The lych gate serves also as a War Memorial.

Arthur Mee mentions that the chuch would have been known to Sir John Delves, one of the local landowners, who fought at the Battle of Poitiers. There was formerly a monument to him in the medieval church. However, in the Victorian church there was a brass depicting his heir, Ralph Delves. Another monument was to Sir Thomas Smith of the early 17th century. It had a huge marble arch on massive pillars with effigies of Sir Thomas in armour, his wife and two children. I wonder what became of them.

The unusual set of signs was seen when approaching Wybunbury from the north on a footpath that is part of the Nantwich and Crewe circular walk. I have yet to see a snake in Cheshire but have seen one in Staffordshire.

Sources

The Buildings of England: Cheshire, by Nikolaus Pevsner and Edward Hubbard, first edition 1971, Yale University Press edition in 2003.
The King's England, Cheshire
, edited by Arthur Mee, published by Hodder and Stoughton, 1938, fourth impression 1950.

 

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Cheshire Antiquities
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