St George


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Known as "The Cathedral of the Feldon" there has been a church on this site from Saxon times, and the area is known to have been occupied by the Romans before them.  Some traces of Saxon and early Norman work have been found in the church building, and the foundations of the church mentioned in 1124 were discovered beneath the south arcade of the nave during the 1879 "restoration".

The area is now generally known as "Brailes", but it once covered a much wider area of settlement, including the nearby village of Cherington, and the former Manors of Chelmscote and Winderton.

In the 14th century Brailes was a bustling market town, with its market granted by charter in 1248, when there was a Monday market and a three-day fair "on the eve, day and morrow of St George's Day".  Both the Church and the nearby Public House (7)  are still called St George.



These sedilia in the chancel are of note because they are on three different levels, corresponding to the three  steps occupied at a mass in the Middle Ages by Celebrant, Deacon and Sub-Deacon. They also were restored in 1879.

An earlier restoration in 1824 is recorded on a plaque on the wall of the north aisle, upon which is recorded:


The interior of this church was repaired and the accommodation enlarged in the year 1824, by which means 175 additional seatings have been obtained, and in consequence of a grant from the Society Promoting the Enlargement and Building of Churches and Chapels, 155 of that number are hereby declared to be free and unappropriated for ever, in addition to 110 formerly provided in the church.

Cornwall Smalley, Vicar

William Baker, Joseph Spencer, Churchwardens.

The date of the building of the gallery is not recorded, but it is possible that this "Restoration", which essentially enlarged the seating in the church, was the means by which the building of the gallery was accomplished.


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4  -  The west end of the church, and 5  -  a view to the west end from the chancel steps.

The Church Guide records that " an ugly gallery painted black and with a partition of lath and plaster" which blocked the western arch of the tower completely was removed during the "restoration" of 1879, as were the old box-pews, which were replaced by the present seating.



Memorial to John Alcock who died April 14th, 1760, aged 42; also John Alcock who died July 15th, 1788, aged 29; and to Joseph Spencer, son-in-law of John Alcock, Senr.


The George, an inn owned by the Hook Norton Brewery.



8  -  The wheeled bier, still in use, was given in memory of the wife of the Rev'd. T. Smith.  Note also the contrast between the wheeled Bath Chair and its modern equivalent.


Dove's reference for the bells:

Brailes, Warwick, S George, 6, 29-0-19 in C. 

This is the third heaviest ring of six bells in the country.


Map reference : SP315393

The church stands at the top of a small green adjacent the village street, and is approached past the war memorial and through a dark lych-gate, upon which is a curious Latin inscription. The south door is reached by a short path from the village green, and there is on-street parking nearby.



Photographs: © Edwin Macadam   2002
The Parochial Church Council would also like their consent sought for the reuse of any pictures.


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© July 2001 -