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St Mary Magdalene, Castle Ashby, Northamptonshire

(52°13′27″N, 0°44′11″W)
Castle Ashby
SP 864 592
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Northamptonshire
now Northamptonshire
  • Ron Baxter

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Feature Sets

The church of St Mary Magdalene stands in the Castle Ashby estate, with access through the S entrance for the parish, and through the N entrance for the house. It has a three-bay aisled nave with Perpendicular arcades; the N aisle extended eastwards to form a chapel with an arch from the chancel. This has a N vestry, and there is a Perpendicular W tower with a lead ogee roof. There are nave doorways to N and S, both under porches, and the N porch entrance is treated as a 12thc. doorway using some Romanesque stones but incorporating a good deal of 19thc. material too. The exterior is faced in small grey stone blocks, roughly shaped and coursed.


In 1086 Castle Ashby was held by Hugh from Countess Judith.

Benefice of Yardley Hastings, Denton and Grendon with Castle Ashby and Whiston.


Exterior Features



Pevsner (1973) comments on the juxtaposition of chevron (normally considered to be a Romanesque ornament) and dogtooth (diagnostically Early English) on the same doorway, finding it 'a rare (and historically instructive) combination.' He notes that the doorway is much restored, but does not appear to question the authenticity of its ornamental forms. The present author is inclined to agree.

Victoria County History: Northamptonshire. IV (1937)
N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: Northamptonshire. Harmondsworth 1961, rev. B. Cherry 1973, 136-38.