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St Leonard, Scarcliffe, Derbyshire

(53°12′47″N, 1°15′36″W)
SK 495 687
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Derbyshire
now Derbyshire
medieval Lichfield
now Derby
medieval St Giles
now St Leonard
  • Richard Jewell
04 Aug 1990

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Within the district of Bolsover, this church is substantially 13thc with later alterations and some 19thc restoration. Romanesque features are the S doorway to the nave and the priest's doorway to the chancel; both have sculpture. The responds of the chancel arch are Romanesque, with scalloped capitals. The Transitional N arcade has nailhead on the abaci.


No church is recorded at Scarcliffe in the Domesday Survey. The first known church was built in the time of Hubert Fitzralph, who held the manor of Scarcliffe in the second or third decade of the 12thc. It was among the earliest endowments of Darley Abbey, founded c. 1135; the advowson being the gift of Hubert Fitzralph. At this time, according to the Darley Abbey cartulary, it was dedicated to St Giles. It was re-dedicated in the later Middle Ages, perhaps after a remodelling of the fabric.


Exterior Features


Interior Features


Chancel arch/Apse arches

The S doorway, chancel arch capitals and priest's door all seem to be contemporary work of the first quarter of the 12thc. Pevsner calls the priest's door "renewed", but Cox was informed that it was "merely freed from plaster and scraped a few years ago" (recorded c. 1875). The N arcade dates from the end of the 12thc, although with some nailhead and round arches it is too Gothic to include in the Corpus, as is the fine recumbent effigy of Lady Constantia, of the Early English period.


J. C. Cox, The Churches of Derbyshire, I, The Hundred of Scarsdale, London 1875, 321-27.

C. Hartwell, N. Pevsner and E. Williamson, The Buildings of England. Derbyshire, New Haven and London, 2016, 581-82.

N. Pevsner and E. Williamson, The Buildings of England. Derbyshire, London, 1978, 314-15.