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Listed Building record MDR5863 - St Martin's Church, Church Street, Alfreton

Type and Period (2)

  • (Medieval to Tudor - 1200 AD? to 1540 AD?)
  • (Post Medieval to 21st Century - 1540 AD? to 2050 AD)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

St Martin's Church, Church Street, Alfreton, originally a 13th century church with significant later alterations. The church at Alfreton, dedicated to St. Martin, consists of a nave, side aisles, south porch, western tower, and chancel with a vestry on the north side. The oldest part appears to be the stilted archway from the nave into tower and may be attributed, from the mouldings of its capitals, to the commencement of the Early English period. The Decorated Period is in evidence in some of the arches separating the nave from the south aisle, probably dating to c1320, and the moulding of the arch of the south doorway. The tower is early Perpendicular, probably from the commencement of the 15th century. In 1868, the church was enlarged and altered, the north aisle being widened and an extra bay added to the nave and both aisles. The chancel was almost completely rebuilt and extended to retain its former size. The church is first noticed at the endowment of Beauchief Abbey between 1172 and 1176 and it is reasonable to assume that the founder of the Abbey was also the founder of the church. None of the work in the church pre-dates this period. There was at one period a Chantry of our Lady of Alfreton in the north aisle. (1) 'A couple of engravings of the church show its appearance before restoration, at a time when it was described as an 'ancient rude structure … with little regularity of form.' (2) One print shows an outside staircase at the east end of the south aisle by which access was gained to a gallery over the aisle. This was later demolished. (3) The three-stage, western tower is 15th century in date and contains a bellframe which dates to the 19th century. Four timbers from the belfry floor upon which the bellframe sites were analysed by tree-ring dating. Two were found to have been felled in AD 1575-95, while the other two were felled in AD 1619-39. The two earlier beams were the middle ones and could suggest that the belfry floor was inserted in the last quarter of the 16th century with the later outside beams being added some years later, either to strengthen the floor or to replace beams which had failed. (4) Two notable bells of historic significance, one large bell dating from 1780 and another dating from the 16th century. (5) From the National Heritage List for England: 'SK 40 55 NE ALFRETON CHURCH STREET (north side) 8/9 Church of St Martin 13.7.66 GV II* Parish church. C13, C14 and C15, restored and north aisle and south chancel bay added 1868 by T C Hine, chancel enlarged 1899-1901, also with c1930 hall. Ashlar with leaded roofs to south aisle and porch, plain tile roof to chancel and graduated slate roofs elsewhere. Western tower, five bay nave with clerestory to south side, south aisle gabled, north aisle and lower chancel with north vestry, also later hall added to north of north aisle. Deep moulded plinth throughout. C15 three stage west tower has stepped diagonal buttresses to eaves height and stringcourses between the stages. Deeply moulded pointed west door with large 3-light Perpendi- cular window with transom across lower lights, above. This was moved from the east end by T C Hine in 1868. Clockface to second stage south side. Bell stage with pointed 2-light louvred openings with flowing tracery. Slightly projecting embattled parapets over with central gargoyles to each side and crocketed corner pinnacles. Large gabled north aisle has shallow pointed 5-light west window with Perpendicular tracery. Stone coped gable and ridge cross above. North elevation has five 3-light four-centred arched windows with cusped tracery, one window now used as doorcase in 1930 hall to north which is of no special interest. East window of aisle is of 4-lights with geometric tracery. Chancel has small vestry to west, with flat headed doorcase and cusped single light window to north and 2-light Perpendicular style window to east. Beyond to east is an attached C19 wall memorial, a stepped buttress and a 2-light pointed window with flowing tracery. East window of 5 lights with geometric tracery. Stepped sill band below and flanking diagonal buttresses. Near base of wall, a fine early C18 stone wall memorial with flame finial flanked by sculls to the Turner family and above two datestones, one inscribed 'AD MDCCCC' the other 'Laus Deo Aug XV MDCCCLXIX'. South elevation of chancel has stepped sill band, central stepped buttress and two 2-light pointed windows with flowing tracery. Aisle bay against the chancel has segment headed 3-light windows with unusual Perpendicular tracery to east and south. South aisle, to west, has four similar windows with stepped buttresses between and gabled south porch between western two. Porch has double chamfered pointed doorcase with carved eaves band over and ogee headed niche with C19 statue. Above five flat headed clerestory windows with flowing tracery. All openings have hoodmoulds with carved head stops. Interior 5 bay north and south arcades of double chamfered pointed arches with continuous hoodmoulds and foliage stops, south arcade is original, and has octagonal piers with moulded capitals, northern arcade C19 with columns. Both arcades have thickened piers one bay west of chancel arch. Tower has double chamfered pointed arch on octagonal responds with moulded capitals, chancel has similar arch on half shafts with foliage capitals, both have C19 timber screens across. Listing NGR: SK4073155885.' (6)

Sources/Archives (6)

  • <1> Bibliographic reference: Cox, J. 1875. Notes on the Churches of Derbyshire, Vol. I. 3-13.
  • <2> Bibliographic reference: Bateman, T. 1812. A Descriptive and Historical Account of Alfreton.
  • <3> Bibliographic reference: Anon. 1927. 'Alfreton in Olden Days', Alfreton and Belper Journal.
  • <4> Unpublished document: Arnold, A & Howard, R (English Heritage). 2008. St Martin's Church, Alfreton, Derbyshire, Tree Ring Analysis of Timbers from the Belfry Floor, Scientific Dating Report.. English Heritage Research Dept Report no. 45-2008. HER Doc. No. 1132.
  • <5> Unpublished document: Church of England. 2007. Identification of bells and bell frames of historic significance.
  • <6> Listed Building File: Historic England. 2011. The National Heritage List for England.



Grid reference SK 40731 55885 (point)

Related Monuments/Buildings (3)

Related Events/Activities (2)

  • EDR1430
  • EDR2623

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Record last edited

Jun 16 2023 3:58PM

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