Fretherne Church

Summary of report of Consecration

By Jon Shaw

Photo:Woodcut of Fretherne Church

Woodcut of Fretherne Church

Donated by Alison & Jon Shaw

Summary of report on the Consecration of Fretherne Church   -  Thursday 21st October 1847

On Thursday 21st October, the village of Fretherne in Gloucestershire was the scene of a very interesting and impressive ceremony, work as is happily of more frequent occurrence now, than in past years. The Parish Church, picturesquely situated on the banks of the River Severn was until a year or two back as unsightly specimen of neglect and bad taste.

The old Church was so dilapidated a structure and presented so un-ecclesiastical an appearance that it was so determined to pull it entirely down, and to erect on the same site the present beautiful little edifice. The expense of  £3000 has for the most part been liberally defrayed by the Rector, the Rev. William Darell and his friends; assisted by grants.

The new Church was consecrated on 21st by the Lord Bishop of Gloucester and Bristol assisted by his clergy, and in the presence of a full congregation consisting of the gentry of the neighbourhood. At the conclusion of the ceremony the Bishop and his party partook of kind hospitality at the Rectory (which extended to the poor of the Parish and the children of the school in the school house) upon roast beef and plum pudding and other good old English fare, after which his Lordship and the greater part of the company returned to the Church to inspect more of the interior decorations which, are of this kind, perfect.

This page was added by Iris Capps on 29/07/2009.
Comments about this page

The first church was Consecrated in C. 13th when it was erected on the same site. Therefore, the two later churches were 'Dedicated'. Drawings of the second church, demolished to make way for the present church, depict a pretty standard stone building, similar to Arlingham church but smaller, and of a similar era i.e. Late 13th - Early 14th C. Either the fabric of the building deteriorated more in about four years than it had done over the preceding 500 years, or the artist used an awful amount of licence. The more likely source of the over-use of licence would be the petitioners. They did not want old churches, or to refurbish them, they wanted a monument to themselves, and a glorious new building in the favoured style of the time fitted the bill. Therefore, as there were no site visits to appraise the actual situation, and the Church authorities did not want to discourage people and communities from investing in new buildings, the petitioners over-egged their descriptions of the 'wreck' they wished to replace. (Author of 'Fretherne Church - A History')

By Craig Barney
On 01/03/2010

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