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St Mary, Arminghall
So Arminghall was taking part in the bike ride, and as it turned out the people here were some of the friendliest and most welcoming that we met all day. And if Arminghall was a little behind the rest of Norfolk that day then it wasn't entirely out of keeping with the place. It is a sleepy, peaceful kind of village, which feels a bit off the beaten track, although in point of fact it isn't. if you look at a map, you'll see that Arminghall church is closer to the centre of Norwich than the city's hardened housing estates of Bowthorpe and Heartsease. But here we are, in a peaceful fold of trees and copses, and I thought that the people who lived in pleasant Arminghall were fortunate.
And St Mary is a small, pleasant church, if rather unexciting as these things go. There was an overwhelming restoration here at the hands of the major 19th century architect JP Seddon. He usually left churches looking pretty, and did that here, although Pevsner points out that the plans were rather more ornate than the result.
Everything is to scale; there is no change between nave and chancel, but an elegant little screen with a wide arch marks the transition. There is no dado to it, and the effect is of one of those trellises up which climbing plants grow.
Simon Knott, September 2006
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