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St Michael, Upton, Northamptonshire

(52°14′7″N, 0°57′0″W)
SP 718 602
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Northamptonshire
now Northamptonshire
  • Ron Baxter

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Feature Sets

St Michael's stands in the grounds of Quinton House school. It has a simple nave, chancel and W tower. The chancel is very slightly wider than the nave and there is no chancel arch, so that the interior forms a single hall-like space with unrendered stone walls, the side walls pierced by an unusually large number of windows of all periods from the 12thc. to the 15thc. There is a 12thc. window in the S nave wall, another in the N nave wall and a third in the N chancel wall. The church has plain 12thc. doorways to N and S of the nave and to the S of the chancel. The S nave doorway is under a porch dated 1594. The slender tower is built within the nave and has a polygonal W stair turret. The pointed, chamfered lancets in the lower storey suggest that the tower was originally 13thc., but its bell-openings and embattled parapet are 15thc. The plain doorways are described below, along with a chevron voussoir reset high in the tower S wall.


Upton was held by the king in 1086. No church or priest was recorded at that time.

The church is now in the care of the Churches Conservation Trust.


Exterior Features


Exterior Decoration


The three doorways are clearly contemporary and although they are very plain, the chamfered orders point to a date in the later 12thc. All have an extra order in the arch, an arrangement that also occurs at Abington. This makes the solitary voussoir more tantalising; it clearly cannot come from a doorway. Its form suggests a big arch, possibly the absent chancel arch. A similar arrangement of orders.

N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: Northamptonshire, Harmondsworth, 1961, rev. by B. Cherry, 1973, 437f.