Paxtonvic’s Blog

Just another weblog

More stats on a hot day- and a visit to Ashby St Ledgers

A 2007 survey confirmed that 85% of the population visit a church building or a place of worship each year (2007 ORB survey) – from the Church Care web-site:

(  previously the  Council for the Care of Churches ) – well worth a look.

Reckon churches would be some of the coolest places at the moment.

Here is the incredible church at Ashby St Ledgers in Northamptonshire still with its box pews intact. Im not sure even I would take them all out for community use….

ashby church

To tell the truth I’ve  taken that photo off the church’s  excellent web-site as my offerings dont seem to have come out very well – the above shows the Jacobean triple decker pulpit.

Below is a rather dark picture looking up towards the east window – but it is a bit like that when you walk in:

ashby dark

interior And here is the rood screen – and this I didnt know – taken from the web-site:

Looking straight ahead you will see the beautiful Rood Screen of fine delicate carving which was created in 1500. There is no evidence that a Rood was ever in situ but the access stairs, through a door on the right, within the Jacobean manorial pew, shows much wear and tear. The Gospel was always read from the top of the screen before the Reformation.. I doubt we would get folk to climb to the top of the rood screen to read the gospel nowadays – health and safety would probably preclude that.

Most spectacular in my opinion are the two passion cycles of wall paintings from the 14th century – worth a drive of some miles to see them…

ashby wall paintings

This section of the Passion Cycle depicts our Lord being nailed upon the cross. These paintings form one of the most extensive cycles to be found in this country. Copies are lodged in the Victoria and Albert Museum.


So, that was a very pleasant visit last Saturday afternoon on my way back from Coventry – church was open – and apart from the notice board which needs a make-over I thought the church felt very welcoming and cared for. It is dedicated to St Mary The Virgin and Leodegarius who as you all know was a 7th century French Bishop- well, I need to check that out..

Next door, finally, to the church is the PLOT HOUSE where it is thought the gunpowder plot was hatched. The village is rich in history and is well worth spending quality time exploring.

Back to Little Paxton and time now to study our CHUFT plans – Church For Tomorrow Project – with our business plan now laid out and funding proposals shaping up….

June 29, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized


  1. Yo Paxtonvic;
    enjoyed the piece on Ashby St Ledger especially the bit…
    -church was open-.
    Please please please start a campaign on this smashing, wonderful, uber-informative blog of yours to
    I know everyone will say “Oh we have to keep them LOCKED because of vandalism”. Urrrrgh!!!!
    This is misinformed non-commentable clap trap and wholly inaccurate.
    Locked churches are far more likely to attract damage than unlocked ones. (ref. Ecclesiastical Insurance)

    The village church here is UNLOCKED 24/7/365, and, I am proud to say, the witness our worshiping community are able to offer EVERYBODY that darkens our door far outweighs the two very minor incidents we have experienced over many years of being open.
    Most Summers 2 tramps bed down with their bed rolls and give us (the church) the opportunity to help them and prepare them for their onward journey.
    At Christmas especially with many people having up to 14 days off work we get many many visitors, young families I’m happy to say, who are able to see the Christ Child in his manger and hang a prayer-star on the Christmas tree.

    No wonder we see statistics on church attendance and Christian attitude etc. such as we have seen on this blog recently, it really is not very supprising that the rest of the ‘real world’ consider us strange. No-one but WE are responsible for such toe cringing comments and remarks. We heap it on ourselves, we deserve everything we get.

    When Christ returns I think he will run a mile from most of the things we refer to as ‘church’.
    I think he would get more respect and love from the local hostelry than from many of our church communities. A non-church agnostic friend of mine once said to me, from what he understood about Jesus Christ most of the people he knew who went to his local church would ask Him (Jesus) to leave if He turned up at one of their services. And, you know, I think he has a point.

    We have just enjoyed the Archdeacons Cycleride in this deanery (Yo Hugh, please everyone, support Hugh’s charity The Five Tallents); well, you woulld not believe the problems we had in asking for the village church to be open for ONE DAY. You’d have thought we were asking to hold satanic black masses in the building, it was crazy! Its only a building, if you have valuables either lock them up or better still, give them away.

    Get a grip C of E these buildings are for EVERYONE to appreciate and enjoy. No wonder the rest of the world is begining to to regard us as an irrelevance.

    One of the simplest and most worthy things we can all do for our neighbour is to turn a key in a lock morning and evening so that the ‘stranger in our midst’ can take time with God in the cool of a beautiful building.
    Here, those tending graves are especially appreciative and although you will perhaps never be told personally the word will go round and your church communiuty will be better regarded for it.
    This church also provides a votive candle stand and we get through 20-30 night-lights a week.
    This is beautiful, we are a village of only 630 souls. Amen.
    ‘Cast your bread upon the waters, it will return fourfold’

    Comment by Wingy | June 30, 2009 | Reply

  2. Hi Paxtonvic, I wanted to ask if i could use your photo of Ashby St Ledgers church (June 2009). We’re getting married there and i’d really like to put your picture on the front of our invitations?

    Comment by Almatygirl | March 10, 2010 | Reply

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