Our District Churches No.7 – St Mary The Virgin, Ashley

St Mary the Virgin Church, Ashley, Northamptonshire

Although just outside our Leicestershire area, to say this is no ordinary parish church is definitely an understatement!

Ashley Village Church is dedicated to St Mary the Virgin. The Church was mostly rebuilt by Sir George Gilbert Scott in 1867. It was rebuilt for the Rev Richard Pulteney, Rector 1853-1874 and also the Squire. The cost £2,000, a large amount in the 1800s.

The Church is of 13th century origin and built of local Northamptonshire Ironstone and limestone. It is Grade 1 listed. The Church is known for its tower and broach spire.

It has a marble, alabaster, semi-precious stone and gold leaf decorated chancel. The chancel is designed by Clayton and Bell as are the stained-glass windows. The Church was described by Historic England as “an outstanding example of Victorian Gothic style at its height”. There is a painted barrel ceiling which is similar in characterestics to the ceiling at Peterborough Cathedral. The Church has chandeliers made by George Bodley. Further information on those involved in the rebuild is given below.

Sir George Gilbert Scott

Sir George Gilbert Scott was one of many Gothic Revivalist architects. Amongst his many notable works are:

  • Wakefield Cathedral
  • Albert Memorial
  • Foreign and Commonwealth Office
  • Midland Grand Hotel (Now the St Pancras Renaissance Hotel)
  • St Pancras Railway Station and
  • Ashley Church

Clayton and Bell

Clayton and Bell was one of the most prolific and proficient British workshops producing stained-glass windows during the latter half 19th/early 20th century. The partners were John Richard Clayton (1827–1913) and Alfred Bell (1832–1895). The company was founded in 1855 and continued until 1993. Their most notable nearby work is to be found in Peterborough Cathedral and of course, Ashley Church.

George Bodley

George Bodley, with his partner, Thomas Garner, designed:

Why Not Visit St Mary’s, Ashley

St Mary the Virgin is a stunning church in the small, picturesque village of Ashley, nestling in the beautiful rolling hills of the Welland Valley. The village is about 4 miles north-east of Market Harborough.

It is definitely worth taking diversion off the road from Weston-by Welland to Medbourne to visit this extremely fine building.

Discover Our District Churches No. 8 >

For more on our local district churches, please see: