St George and the dragon – just one of our claims to fame!
A few weekends ago it was Heritage Open Days where right across the country places open their doors for free over a 4 day period and there is lots of information on the Heritage open days website. Brinsop Church is one of the places that opens as part of the project and so it seemed an appropriate time to re-visit it and write about it.
Brinsop Church is close to the west boundary of Brinsop Court Estate and is an absolute delight. Officially it dates from the 13th and 14th centuries, but there are traces of 12th century work in the chancel and north doorway. We know this because inside the church is a leaflet with all sorts of useful information and a self-guided tour of the church.
Rather than just regurgitate the leaflet, I thought I’d tell you about the best bits! As you walk around the outside of the church, reading the various grave stones, some of which are no longer legible, there is a wonderful sense of peace and quiet and round the side the view is of a small lake or large pond with swans adding to the tranquil scene.
The field between the lake and the church had cows and calves in at the weekend ‘guarding’ the site of St George’s victory over the dragon which is marked by a stone. Frustratingly we couldn’t get close enough to it to get a decent photo, but there is a photo on the internet, so I guess I didn’t need my own one!
Heading into the church we were eager to find more St George memorabilia and sure enough there he is, slaying the dragon carved into the wall as well as a beautiful metal figure on the left of the alter.
There is masses to see inside not only about St George, but about Wordsworth, World War II, Sir Ninian Comper and his strawberry plant trade mark and of course various owners of Brinsop including the Danceys and Baileys. Definitely worth a visit and you don’t have to wait for next year’s Heritage Open Days because it is still a working church with regular services.
Don’t forget as well that on the Brinsop Court Estate website is a Radio 4 podcast broadcast in April 2012 as part of Open Country which is well worth a listen. To make it easy for you, here is the link http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01g63tv#synopsis. If you don’t want to listen to the whole programme, then move the pink slider to 0:19:39.