Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Ruthwell Parish Church

In the apse built to take the cross at Ruthwell church there are three windows which each contain a saint local to the Northumbrian region made by Percy Bacon Brothers in London, This one is St Hilda.

In 657 Hilda became the founding  Abbess at Whitby Abbey. Here you can see her holding a model of the abbey, as is often seen in pictures of founding and patron saints of churches. As far as I can see, such representations usually appear in the church that is pictured, but in this case, Whitby Abbey has been in ruin for hundreds of years. By comparing the windows in the model with this picture of the ruins, you can see it is the same building. It is of some interest that it was Whitby Abbey's ruins that inspired Bram Stoker to write Dracula.

Another appearance by St Cuthbert, briefly Bishop of Lindisfarne.

The third window is of St Aiden, who was one of St Cuthbert's predecessors and said to have inspired him. St Aiden was the first Bishop of Lindisfarne. It is interesting to note that for a brief period in the 7th century all three of these people in the windows would have been alive at the same time.

These windows seem a little bit long for the frames and the glass continues behind the frame a little. Perhaps this is not uncommon and I only saw it because I could get particularly close to the windows.

The St Aiden window is dedicated to the Reverend James McFarlan (St Cuthbert to his wife and no name is mentioned on St Hilda). It was he that was minister of the church in 1887 when the Apse was built and cross brought inside. Residents of nearby Clarencefield may also recognise the name as the local village hall bears it.

There is a window made by Gordon Webster  in 1958 - he was mentioned a few blogs ago for his windows in Dunblane cathedral and I have seen his windows in other places to which will appear here in due course.

The plainer windows in the church are all edged in orange and  yellow - most appealing.

Monday, 29 July 2013

Gallery windows in at St Columba's in Largs

The North and South galleries in St Columba's in Largs have windows, that though exactly the same shape are very different in style. The north window is by Winfield of Birmingham (I found no information about them online) and using patterned areas the window is divided into definate four definate scenes from the life of Christ related to the Sea of Galilee. Top left - Jesus calms the waters. Top right - preaching on the shores of the lake. Bottom left - Jesus walks on water and Peter has a go but sinks. Bottom right - after a terrible night's fishing Simon Peter returns to the sea on Jesus' instruction and get a great catch.

The South gallery window is a much busier affair made by The Stephen Adam Studio in Glasgow. The bottom half I think is supposed to represent Earth with the birth of Christ on the left and his going to Calgary on the right with a poor and rich man inbetween. Above that, I think, the heavens with angels and (according to the guide book) Apostles Prophets and Martyrs. There one in there carrying a tablet which I imagine to be Moses. The window might not tell as clear a tale as the one opposite it but it certainly is quite striking.

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

St Mary's, Star of the Sea in Largs

St Mary's, Star of the Sea church in Largs is a very modern building built in 1962. It has a series of eight stained glass panels above the front door, which are symbolic of various aspects of the Catholic religion. There is no information available to me to say where, when or who made them but they have a bit of a Mediterranean feel to me.

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Gordon Webster at Dunblane Cathedral

As you walk in the door at Dunblane Cathedral, this window is opposite you. It's one of the later windows in the Cathedral, dating to 1968 and made by Gordon Webster. There isn't much information about Gordon Webster. He lived from 1908 till 1987 and his father, Alf Webster, made stained glass windows too. Alf died in 1915 and Gordon's mother looked after the firm until Gordon took over in 1929. Slightly confusingly the information I have also says that Douglas Hamilton looked after the firm in those years and he trained Gordon in stained glass.

They're lovely windows but I'm not sure about the thing with the blacked out eyes. I noticed that the Abbey Studio windows in the Fairmilehead church, two blogs ago, went in for the same thing. It's a little creepy.

There are another three windows by him in the chapter house. These are a little earlier at 1959, 1963 and 1966 (probably - I couldn't see the date very well because of the lip of the stone)

Saturday, 20 July 2013

St Gregory's Church in the Vale of Lune

St Gregory's in the Vale of Lune in Cumbria is probably about as plain as churches come. It could just about be mistaken for another farm building. It's not much fancier inside but it does have some good windows. Built in the 1860s, it was originally a chapel and school room which were later combined to make the church. It has quite a short history of regular use. Originally an estate chapel it passed into the hands of the Church of England in 1817. It was declared redundant in 1984 and is now in the hands of the Churches Conservation Trust who look after such places.

This window is in the porch area on the way in. The booklet in the church is unsure of it's history but think it might be from William Morris's company as there are another two from there in the church.

The nave has this delightful series of windows which were made in 1900 by Frederic George Smith of Campbell, Smith and Co.

Behind the altar, there are a couple of hatches in the wood panelling so you can see the patterned glass behind it.

These two window are definitely Morris and Co.

These two windows are probably the newest in the church, obviously this must have been made after the church became part of the Diocese of Bradford in 1917.

Since both these windows are pretty much the same I guess they both date after 1930 when John Upton died. It was his estate that the church was chapel for prior to 1917.