Kenderchurch is SW Herefordshire, 10 miles SW of Hereford and a mile from the Welsh border. The church stands on a hill above the A465, overlooking Pontrilas Sawmill, and Kenderchurch consists of little more than this. The church was closed for public worship on 1 January 2013, and the parish largely transferred to Kilpeck. St Mary’s consists of a chancel with a 19thc N vestry, and a nave with a S porch and a bell-cote over the W gable. The church was almost entirely rebuilt by William Chick in 1870-71. The only Romanesque feature is the font.
The vill is not recorded in the Domesday Survey. The church was originally dedicated to Saint Cyndir/Keneder, a disciple of Saint Cadoc who reputedly negotiated with Arthur. The site is mentioned in a list of churches in Ergyng, south Herefordshire, in the Book of Llandaff. Saint Cyndir’s name, or variants thereof, was still being used in 1291 and 1341 (Bannister (1916).
At the W end of the nave, on the S side is a plain red sandstone font consisting of a tub-shaped bowl on a cylindrical stem with a chamfered block base on a square step. The bowl is unlined, and its rim is decorated with a row of incised zigzags. There is a staple hole at the SE of the rim and a staple projecting at the NW. The rim is damaged at the SW.
|External diameter of bowl at rim||0.72m|
|Height of base||0.30m|
|Height of bowl||0.32m|
|Height of font (without step)||0.91m|
|Height of stem||0.29m|
|Internal diameter of bowl at rim||0.55m|
R. T. Bannister, The Place Names of Herefordshire: their origin and development, Cambridge 1916, 103.
A. Brooks and N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: Herefordshire. New Haven and London 2012, 381-82.
Herefordshire Sites and Monuments Record 6824
Historic England Listed Building 155542
G. Marshall, “Fonts in Herefordshire”, Transactions of the Woolhope Naturalists’ Field Club, II (1950), 29-30.
N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: Herefordshire. Harmondsworth 1963, 199.
RCHME, An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Herefordshire, 1: South-west, 1931, 152.