Thursday, September 27, 2012

EMAS Field Trip to Farnham Castle, etc.

EMAS Field Trip to Farnham Castle Keep, 
Witley Church and Compton Churches, Surrey 
Saturday, 3rd November 2012

David Beard will be our guide for this day trip to Surrey.

Farnham Castle has the remains of a 23 sided polygonal keep which follows the motte outline of this motte and bailey castle.  The keep is entered through a gateway tower.  Domestic apartments were added on this site in the 12th century and they would have been quite sumptuous.

We will then visit All Saints, Witley, which displays several periods of architecture.  Two double-splayed windows reveal the height of the original Saxon nave, though now Saxo-Norman with an interesting Norman doorway.  The chancel, crossing tower and south transept is Early Gothic, but the font and unusual piscina is later in the 13th century.  The 12th century wall paintings, depicting the life of the Virgin, are part of the school of painting connected with the Cluniac Priory at Lewes.

After lunch we will visit St Nicholas, Compton.  It has a Saxon tower, but one of the most amazing features of this church is a Romanesque two-storeyed sanctuary consisting of a vaulted chamber and a chapel above, which was added to the chancel in the late 12th century – the associated guard rail with this feature is one of the oldest pieces of woodwork in the country.  c.1180 the nave was also much enlarged with Romanesque influences in style.  However the font is Early Norman.

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