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Church: C13 and C15 with late C17 alterations, restored 1859 and 1911. Coursed stone rubble and stone rubble with ashlar dressings. Plain-tile roofs, ashlar coped to chancel. 

PLAN: Chancel, nave with south porch, west tower. 

EXTERIOR: Chancel with C19 Decorated 3-light east window with foil tracery. Early C15 north window of 3 cusped lancets. Decorated south window of 2 cusped lancets with quatrefoil over, with C17 cross-boarded door to right with reset flat stone lintel with diagonal dressing. Rugged lateral buttress at south-east corner. Nave north wall with 3 mid C19 arched 2-light windows with quatrefoil vesica. Buttresses with offsets, and low flat buttresses at corners. Restored square-headed window with leaded lights to east. South wall with simple C13 lancet to west, 2 early C14 windows of twin cusped lancets with lozenge over, C17 south doorway with segmental arch on plain abacus. 3 buttresses with setbacks and one locked high-level window to east. Tower: C13 lower stages with splayed plinth below roll-moulded string course. First and second stages have lancets to south and west. The upper level of the second stage has twin lancets on 3 sides and is capped by corbelled course at former roof position. Upper stage is C15 bell-chamber, with twin cusped lancets on each side, and C17 rebuilt top including string course, castellated parapet, and pyramid roof. South porch: C17 tiled gabled porch with single tenoned-purlin roof. 2 cruck-framed trusses with collars. Outer truss with chamfered members and struts above. Inner truss with chamfered crucks only. Restored rafters and straight wind braces. Close-studded timber-frame with herringbone brick infill panels on stone rubble plinth. 

INTERIOR: Chancel has 2-bay roof with 4 chamfered trenched purlins, with one chamfered arch-braced collar truss with raking struts. Moulded north wall plate reputed to be former rood-loft bressumer. Restored piscina with reset C14 carved stone. East window glass by Evans and Son of Shrewsbury. C17 panelling set around altar. Early C13 chancel arch of 2 orders with simple cavetto-moulded abacus, capitals of broad flat-leafed decoration much restored, and chamfered shafts. Nave has 5-bay chamfered double trenched-purlin roof with diagonally-set ridge, chamfered straight wind braces at both purlins with inverted additional bracing at lower purlin. 6 trusses: 4 arch-braced collar trusses with raking struts, with, at each end, 2 twin vertical-strut and collar trusses, that to the west infilled with later struts. One collar dated 1707 between inscribed initials. Triple-chamfered Early English tower arch with moulded capitals. C12 font with fluted bowl set on C20 stepped plinth. Vestiges of painted medieval wall plaster above chancel arch. Wall monuments in chancel: to Elizabeth Adams/Lucy d.1667. Latin tablet with 2 coats of arms and festoon between, round arched pediment surmounted with coats of arms, side pilasters, putti on brackets; to George Lee d.1673. Simple Latin inscribed tablet surmounted with an ornate coat of arms; to Edward Botterel d.1782. Large tablet with cornice surmounted with globe finial and coat of arms below; to Thomas Wall d.1772. Plain framed painted timber tablet with marbled painted timber backing surmounted with coat of arms. 

(Klein P: A Guide to Stoke St Milborough Parish Church: Leominster: 1992-; The Buildings of England: Pevsner N: Shropshire: Harmondsworth, Middlesex: 1958-: 294). 

 

St. Milburga’s Church stands in the centre of the village of Stoke Saint Milborough, on the Brown Clee hillside.  Known in Saxon times as Godstoke, the village is thought to have belonged to the Saxon abbey at Wenlock founded in 680 A.D. by St. Milburga, daughter of Merewald of Mercia.  The early 13th century chancel arch is the oldest datable feature of the church, with flattened leaf decoration of the capitals of the responds.  On the west wall of the porch is its oldest monument, the simple medieval grave stone showing an encircled cross. Open daily to visitors, St. Milburga’s offers a variety of Sunday services, clergy and lay led, traditional and modern, activities such as bell-ringing and singing and groups for prayer and study.

St. Milburga’s chapel of rest, the 12th century Heath Chapel, has survived almost untouched for 900 years, since its construction on the slopes of the Corve Dale.  It sits in a field between the villages of Clee St. Margaret and Abdon, the beautifully hinged door and double order of arches with zig-zag motif being its only decoration.  The roof has been recently restored; the interior is as built.

 

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