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St Lawrence, Barton-on-the-Heath, Warwickshire

(51°59′25″N, 1°37′42″W)
SP 256 325
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Warwickshire
now Warwickshire
medieval Worcester
now Coventry
  • Harry Sunley

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Nave and chancel with W tower and saddleback roof. S aisle and porch. Material, local Cotswold type stone. 12thc. features include the lower stage of the tower, the chancel arch, S and N doorways to the nave, two plain windows in the W wall, and one with sculpture in the N wall.


Exterior Features



Interior Features


Chancel arch/Apse arches

Loose Sculpture


The interlacing designs are unusual for Warwickshire (Stoneleigh N tympanum, and Offchurch chancel N window have them). Pevsner suggests the probability of an earlier Anglo-Danish church on the site, followed by a late Norman church.

It is possible that the N window lintel could have been a tympanum from an earlier doorway.

VCH states that the chancel and nave are early 12thc., but that there seems to have been some attempt at enhancing the chancel arch and chancel window. Pevsner's view is that that the carving was the result of a start being made on carving the arch. In favour of this is the fact the carvings are sunk into the voussoir. However, one might question whether the carvings are of a stylistic later date. Three other features are relevant; firstly, as mentioned above, the voussoir concerned subtends a greater angle than its peers (18 degrees against an average for the arch of 7.5 degrees); it has a radius of curvature statistically smaller than the average (mean + 3 standard deviations = 83 against average of 1.12 m) using three different methods of assessment; finally, the material is different in colour. It may also be relevant that the corresponding voussoir on the west face is also larger and of a lighter colour than its peers; it is not a continuation of the carved voussoir. It is possible that the carving on the soffit was carried out in situ, or that the carving is a reused block, perhaps partially reshaped.


VCH 5:13

Pevsner and Wedgewood, 86