St Margaret's Church, St Margarets (16thC Rood Screen)

Recent Photograph of St Margaret's Church (16thC Rood Screen) (St Margarets)

The Rood Screen and Loft is described by Pevsner as ‘one of the wonders of Herefordshire’ and this photograph easily shows why that is so. The Guide Leaflet tells us it was built c.1520, and originally there would have been a large Crucifix and figures of the Blessed Virgin and St John in the two small niches in the supporting columns (now empty). At festivals they were dressed with garlands of flowers, but in Lent, covered with veils.

Many churches would have had similar Rood Screens which would have been destroyed after the Reformation, when the order was made in 1547 to destroy all images. Fortunately, this was at the discretion of individual parishes, and perhaps St Margaret's isolation was responsible for its preservation, in escaping the notice of those who would have had it removed.

The underside of the loft is divided into panels, with moulded ribs. The bosses at their intersection are carved with a variety of mouldings, including men's heads, lions, a shield, and foliage. The carving is exquisite - at one time it would have been richly painted and gilded. Pevsner says it is in the Welsh style.

(Information provided by Rosemary Lockie)

Image contributed by Rosemary Lockie on 8th August 2007.
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