St. Peter’s Church, Boxted

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The Church Building

St.Peter’s Church is situated on high ground to the north of Boxted village within the Boxted Conservation Area of the Dedham Vale AONB.

Originally built at the turn of the 11th century, the Grade I listed building, which seats about 120 people, consists of a Norman tower with nave, chancel and north and south aisles. The construction is a mixture of stone, brick and pudding-stone, with a scattering of Roman brick; it was described by Pevsner in Buildings of England as “a variety of textures that happens to look extremely lovely“.

There is a Georgian gallery at the west end of the nave, on which rests a single-manual organ by Henry James (1875). As the first stage of a major renewal programme (Section 6) the nave and aisle floors were completely renewed and a modern heating system installed in 2005.

The Chancel

Among the outstanding features of the richly textured chancel is the ceiling, which was beautifully decorated in 1999 by Howell & Bellion of Saffron Walden. The decoration has a star motif on a blue ground, the colours being dictated by those of the reredos (1870) and east window (1924). The visitor is challenged to spot the depictions of the Hale-Bopp comet, seen in the skies in 1998, and the total eclipse of the sun that occurred in 1999.

The Bells

The tower has two bells. In 2008 the tenor bell of 1812 was recast and, with the smaller treble bell of 1714, rehung for swing chiming and electronic stationary chiming.

 Treble  Note D  3cwt 3qrs 0lbs   30”  1714  Thos Gardiner, Sudbury
 Tenor  Note B Flat   6cwt 0qrs 0lbs   33”  1812 Thomas Mears, Whitechapel
(recast 2008, Whitechapel Bell Foundry)
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Visitors by car to St Peter’s are advised to use the car park at the far end of Church Lane, to the west of the church. Parking in Church Street to the east is limited by the entrances to residential property.