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St Mary Redcliffe, Bristol

St Mary Redcliffe Church, The Parish Office, 12 Colston Parade, Redcliffe, Bristol (51°26′54″N, 2°35′22″W)
medieval St Mary
  • Toby Huitson
  • Toby Huitson
25 February 2023

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Feature Sets

The church of St Mary Redcliffe is sited on the 'red cliff' just outside the medieval city walls of Bristol. One of the most impressive parish churches in England, it is vaulted in stone throughout and has a separate Lady chapel and unique hexagonal outer N porch. The extant work is mostly Decorated and Perpendicular, with the exception of the N inner porch which is Early English. The only remnant of the Romanesque building consists of a single block of loose sculpture.


The church is not recorded in Domesday Book. The earliest known documentary reference dates to 1158.


Loose Sculpture


The sculptured block suggests that the Romanesque church on the site (presuming that it originated from here) was fairly substantial. The sculpture could well be dated to mid-12thc, which would fit with the earliest mention of the church.

Attention was drawn to the sculpture by Jon Cannon in a Study Day for the British Archaeological Association at the church in late February 2023.


N. Pevsner, North Somerset and Bristol, Harmondsworth 1958.