Some Old Devon Churches
By J. Stabb
London: Simpkin et al (1908-16)
Transcribed and edited by Dr Roger Peters
Full text available at
Prepared by Michael Steer
Between 1908 and 1916, John Stabb, an ecclesiologist and photographer who lived in Torquay, published three volumes of Some Old Devon Churches and one of Devon Church Antiquities. A projected second volume of the latter, regarded by Stabb himself as a complement to the former, did not materialize because of his untimely death on August 2nd 1917, aged 52. Collectively, Stabb's four volumes present descriptions of 261 Devon churches and their antiquities.
HITTESLEIGH. St. Andrew. The church consists of chancel with priest's door, nave, north aisle, south porch, and embattled west tower, with three bells, with the following inscriptions:- (1) W. Haydon Warden, W. Pannell of Cullompton Fecit, 1824; (2) Voce mea viva depello cunta vociva; (3) Voce mea viva depello cunta vociva.
In the chancel there is a piscina on the south side, and an aumbry on the north side. The bosses in the nave roof have almost disappeared, and the wall plate is plain, but the carving of the roof of the aisle is good, the bosses and wall plate are carved, and at the east end the beams also, so probably there was originally a chapel here, and this portion of the roof was therefore more highly ornamented. The nave is separated from the aisle by four arches, supported on granite monoliths. The corbels of the tower arch appear to have been carved, but they have been so scraped it is impossible to make out what the carvings were intended to represent. There are no old monuments, but in the aisle is a tombstone bearing date 1568. The square Norman font [plate 119] has a kind of zigzag pattern cut round the four sides, and is supported on a low circular shaft resting on a square base. The church retains the old box pews, and the west doorway has the old openings in the walls for the bar fastening for securing the door, and so has the priest's doorway; the latter is rather unusual. There is a modern screen to the belfry. In the churchyard are two fine trees, a yew and an oak.
The registers date: baptisms, 1677; marriages, 1678; burials, 1676.