Batcombe, Blessed Virgin Mary Church
History, tourist information, and nearby accommodation
HERITAGE HIGHLIGHTS: Fan vaulting under the 15th century tower
Sometime after 1250 the rounded Norman chancel was rebuilt with a squared-off east wall, and the nave was rebuilt in the middle of the 15th century.
In the chancel is a brass to Philip Bisse, rector of Batcombe and Archdeacon of Taunton. Bisse served as a rector of Batcombe for 50 years, from 1564-1613. Bisse was an avid book collector, amassing 2,000 volumes fro across Europe. Biss was great friends with some of the leading west country families of the Elizabethan era, including the Wadhams of Merefield. When Nicholas Wadham created Wadham College, Oxford, in his wiil, one of the first students was Philip Bisse's nephew. Bisse left his entire collection of books, worth over £1700 at the time, to Wadham College, where they are kept today.
The font is Perpendicular in style, dating to sometime between 1483-1520. The walls and windows are decorated with Biblical texts, but these have now been limewashed to preserve them.
There is a parish chest dated to 1683, and there is an 18th century painting of The Nativity. The rather striking south porch is dated 1629 and bears a coat of arms to the Bisse family.
Batcombe's church is a wonderful late medieval building, filled with excellent Perpendicular architectural details.
Address: Batcombe, Somerset, England, BA4 6HE
Attraction Type: Historic Church
Location: At the corner of Gold Hill and Back Lane. Parking along the road. Usually open daylight hours.
Photo Credit: David Ross and Britain Express
Heritage Rated from 1- 5 (low-exceptional) on historic interest
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Nearest Accommodation to Batcombe: