St Peter, Creeton, Lincolnshire
- Site Location
- National Grid Reference
- TF 014 199
now (or name of monument): St Peter
- Type of building/monument
- Parish church
II General Description
Isolated on a hillside, this quaint church is primarily of the late 13thc. with W tower, nave with S transept and chancel. Tower has a broach spire. The church was restored in the 1850s. The chancel arch is of the late 12thc. and an Anglo-Saxon grave cover, re-cut in the 12thc., now stands upright in the churchyard.
III Exterior Features
(i) Reused Anglo-Saxon grave cover
Located in the churchyard 3.72 m from S wall of the nave and just W of the S door. Standing upright in bed of gravel. Stone type is Ancaster freestone (see Everson and Stocker for this identification). The long sides carry low relief interlace designs of various types and double cable borders which affirm the Anglo-Saxon origin of this grave cover (for a detailed description of the Anglo-Saxon motifs see Everson and Stocker). The top has 12thc. motifs which suggest it was re-cut. Two large roundels, one at each end of the cover, dominate the composition. That at the top, or the tapering end of the cover, is slightly smaller than that at the bottom (the head). Within the centre of the roundels is a disk surrounded by a circular roll mould. Between this roll mould and that which defines the roundel's circumference there are two concentric bands of saltire crosses - a very complex design. Between the roundels is a field of four vertical rows of six superimposed saltire crosses. Vertically bisecting the four columns is a cable mould, which terminates at the roundels by spreading out into two sprays of acanthus leaves. The leaves are scalloped and very deeply fluted.
|h. (i.e. length of grave cover)||1.66 m|
|w.||0.47 > 0.37 m|
|d.||0.37 > 0.31 m|
IV Interior Features
a. Chancel arch/Apse arches
(i) Chancel arch
Pointed, single order. No bases are preserved. The responds are polygonal. The waterleaf capitals are also polygonal and have scalloped leaves which at their base are chamfered; no necking. Imposts are polygonal and are of the same piece of stone as the capitals. The waterleaf motif on the capitals extends onto the wall N and S on a separate piece of stone that also forms part of the impost. The arch is polygonal and the same on both E and W sides. The label has a lower chamfer and flat face; also same both E and W.
|w. of opening||3.34 m|
|circum.||1.34 m (excludes extension of waterleaf motif that continues on wall on separate piece of stone)|
The village is mentioned in the Domesday Survey but no church is recorded. However, the numerous Anglo-Saxon cross-shaft and grave-cover fragments found here argue for the existence of a pre-Conquest churchyard if not a church in Creeton.
Re-cut grave cover: according to an unpublished manuscript in the Lincoln Central Library which Everson and Stocker refer to, this grave cover was 'found in taking down the old walls of Creeton church in 1856-57'. It is one of the most complete examples of the Anglo-Saxon, mid-Kesteven type grave cover in the county and, based on the re-cutting of one edge, appears to have reused at some point in time as a door lintel (Everson and Stocker). Agreeing with previous scholarship, Everson and Stocker believe the re-cutting of this stone was done when it was reused as a grave cover and prior to its use as a lintel. However, the use of the saltire cross motif above 12thc. doorways is known from the tympani at Rowston and Edenham and raises the possibility that the re-cutting was done when this stone was in fact reused as a lintel.
Chancel arch: The crisp edges of the responds and the arch suggest that they were renewed, perhaps during the mid-19thc. renovations. The capitals appear to be of the late 12thc. though the lack of necking and chamfering at their base suggest a reworking.
- P. Everson and D. Stocker, Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Stone Sculpture. Lincolnshire. Vol. 5, London, 1999, 142-43.
- N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: Lincolnshire. London, 1990, 236-37.