Full Report for Listed Buildings

Summary Description of a Listed Buildings

Reference Number
Building Number
Date of Designation
Date of Amendment
Name of Property
Church of St Chad  


Unitary Authority
Street Side
In a large churchyard and the most prominent building in the village, W of The Square and N of Hanmer Mere.  


Broad Class
Religious, Ritual and Funerary  

Hanmer church is first mentioned in 1110. The present church was begun c1490, after damage by fire in 1463. Its rebuilding saw the creation of a substantial parish church with W tower, but retaining a comparatively humble timber-framed chancel. This was replaced in stone in 1720 (date on building). The chancel was restored in 1884, when original iron gates were removed and placed at a new S entrance to the churchyard. The church was badly damaged by fire in 1889. Restoration by Bodley and Garner, architects of London, including new arcades and roofs, was completed in 1892. This was closely modelled on what was known of the earlier building but was not an exact copy. In 1833 Samuel Lewis noted that the panelled N aisle roof had flower and foliage enrichment, probably referring to the bosses, and that the S aisle was similar, but the restored roofs are simpler in their decoration. The chancel remained disused and roofless until restoration in 1935-6 by W.D. Caroe, architect.  

A late Perpendicular style parish church comprising an aisled nave with W tower, S porch and lower, narrower chancel, of ashlar under shallow-pitched graded stone-tile roofs. Medieval and C18 fabric is generally grey sandstone, with red sandstone used in the 1889-92 restoration. The 4-bay S aisle is buttressed, with diagonal buttresses to the angles. It is embattled, retaining the bases of intended or former pinnacles, with well-preserved grotesques at eaves level. Three lead rainwater heads have survived. Two bear the initials 'EB' and 'TS'. The third has 'IH' and another monogram obscured by vegetation. The 3-stage tower is stepped. To the NE and SE it has angle buttresses, and to the NW and SW diagonal buttresses in lower and middle stages. The W doorway has ribbed double doors under a 4-centred head with quatrefoils in the spandrels and square hood mould. Above is a 4-light W window, which has a hood mould continuous with a string course at impost level. On the N side is a 1-storey blockwork addition. In the middle stage N, S and W faces have pairs of quatrefoil lights under a hood mould. The E face has a similar but single light. The S side also has a sundial with gnomon, and S and E faces have a round clock face on a lozenge board, by Joyce of Whitchurch, 1892. The bell stage has paired 2-light bell openings with transoms, linked hood moulds and louvres. Gargoyles are beneath the embattled parapet. The L-hand (W) bay of the S aisle has the C19 porch, which has red sandstone dressings and crenellations. Its entrance has a segmental pointed arch, with rosettes and foliage in the spandrels, under a square hood mould. Above is a crest of the Hanmer family and an empty statue niche under a cusped ogee head with crockets and finial. Side walls have 2-light square-headed windows. The aisle has 4-light transomed S and W windows under hood moulds with head stops. Against bay 3 in the S wall is an early chest tomb, which has a front panel with badly weathered shields and inverted torches. The aisle E window is in a similar opening to the S windows but has late C19 5-light Perpendicular tracery in red sandstone. The chancel is also embattled and has angle pilasters. It has 4-light round-headed N and S windows with impost and key blocks to the architraves, but C18 Gothic tracery. The 4-light E window is similar in style, but is pointed and has an architrave with panelled pilasters and moulded arch, and apron of low-relief quatrefoils and lozenges. A small tablet in the central merlon bears the date 1720. The N aisle has a low plain parapet, incorporating pinnacle bases. The E window has 5-light C19 tracery in a C15 opening. On its R side is a weathered memorial tablet. The N wall has three 4-light windows similar to the S, but with plainer hoods. The bay at the W end has a 4-centred doorway with sunk spandrels and square hood mould, above which is a 4-light square-headed window with pointed lights and hood mould. A narrow stair light is at the R end, and a similar light is in the W wall. The 4-light aisle W window has C19 tracery in a C15 opening.  

The interior is high and spacious. Late C19 Perpendicular style nave arcades have piers set diagonally, with attached shafts, moulded capitals and 4-centre arches. The nave has a roof of closely-spaced arched braces. Aisles have cambered tie-beam roofs of C16 type, which incorporate quatrefoil panels and bosses, most of which have been left blank, and has beams on corbelled wall posts. The tower arch is hollow-chamfered, with moulded capitals. Behind it is an earlier tower arch, segmental-pointed and dying into the imposts. Beneath the tower are vault springers and a wood ceiling. In the NW corner of the N aisle is a splayed doorway with sunk spandrels to a ribbed door, opening to a short stair to the roof. The chancel arch has triple clustered shafts to a pointed arch. The chancel, has a 3-bay roof with tie beams on brackets, supporting arched braces to a boarded ceiling. Nave and aisles have elaborate wooden screens in late medieval style. The early C20 screen spanning the tower arch has Tudor-headed double doors and flanking outer bays, each with linenfold panels below open arches with delicate tracery patterns. The coving has 2 angels bearing IHS monograms, and memorial inscription to George Kenyon (1840-1908), and is crowned by brattishing and an achievement. In the E bay of each aisle is a screen of 1892 (date on plaque) comprising panelled dado, delicate open tracery, foliage cornice and brattishing. The S screen encloses a chapel; the N screen encloses the organ. In the S chapel is a simple round-headed recess in the S wall, probably for a piscina although there is now no drain. The chancel has Arts-and-Crafts influenced wooden altar rails of 1936, incorporating relief foliage to the uprights and inscription band in raised letters. The late C19 Perpendicular style freestone font is on a stepped plinth. It is octagonal and has alternate Tudor roses and IHS monograms around the bowl. Simple pews have linenfold panelling to the fronts. The ornate Perpendicular style wooden pulpit has blind arches and shields, and a foliage cornice. Choir stalls also have linenfold panelling to the fronts, between uprights with relief foliage. At the base of the tower is a monument to Lloyd Lord Kenyon (1732-1802), the first Lord Kenyon, by J. Bacon the younger of London, dated 1806. It originally stood in the chancel. It has an inscription panel flanked by figures of classically robed women (the R-hand damaged) representing Faith and Justice, below a full-length portrait of a seated figure in the robes of Lord Chief Justice, in an arched recess, with drapes. Below is an added inscription panel commemorating his son the Hon Lloyd Kenyon (d 1800). There are several simple commemorative brass plaques in the nave and aisles. On the R side of the chancel arch a brass with cusped arch and finial commemorates Rev John Hanmer (d 1850). On the L side of the chancel arch a simple brass by Matthews of London commemorates Louisa Lee (d 1883) and Canon Matthew Lee (d 1890). In the N aisle is a round-headed plaque to Lewis Lewis (d 1764). To the L of the tower arch is a plaque to Roger de Grey Kenyon (d 1906) framed by foliage, by Barkentin & Krall of London. Several windows have stained glass. The E window, by Shrigley and Hunt of Lancaster and London, is dated 1936. It is still medieval in style and depicts the Evangelists beside the Sea of Galilee, below which are individual scenes from each of their lives. In the S aisle is a depiction of the Resurrected Christ with St Luke, post 1967 and also by Shrigley and Hunt. Other windows are by C.E. Kempe. The S aisle E window of 1900 depicts the Crucifixion with SS Mary and John, with SS Chad and David in the outer lights. Next to it, the end window in the S aisle, also of 1900, depicts King David, SS Asaph and Patrick, and John the Evangelist. In the N aisle, the window above the doorway, dated 1898, depicts God foretelling to Abraham that he will have a son by his wife Sarah, an unusual subject for a late C19 glass painter.  

Reason for designation
Listed grade II* as a substantial parish church and a commanding presence in the village, retaining much high-quality late medieval and C18 fabric, and well restored in the late C19.  

Cadw : Full Report for Listed Buildings [ Records 1 of 1 ]