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St Mary and All Saints, Little Melton
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and All Saints, Little Melton
Almost everything about St Mary predates the Black Death; very unusual in East Anglia where we were enthusiastic rebuilders in the late 14th and 15th centuries. The Victorians redid the roofs, but otherwise the church retains its little aisles with their lancets and delectable Decorated windows. Externally, it is a thing of beauty, and once you have tracked down a keyholder (like many churches this close to Norwich, it is kept locked) you will find that the inside is similarly lovely.
Many predominantly Decorated buildings that have not been enhanced with the crispness of Perpendicular have an endearingly shabby feel to them, but that is not the case here. St Mary is clean and full of light, the creamy walls and mellow wood of the furniture creating a sense that is devotional and welcoming.
There is a St Christopher further west on the arcade, but only the lower half survives. More paintings can be seen in the north aisle, but probably the best is the Annunciation in the chancel, with Gabriel and Mary either side of the east window - thank goodness the Victorians did not replace it with a larger one! Gabriel's wings appear to be made of peacock feathers; Mary touches her heart as the dove descends.
|Later features contribute to the
charm; the green 19th century organ set below the tower,
disarmingly off-centre; the decalogue boards and a single
brass inscription to the Anguishe family, who we have met
elsewhere at Norwich St George Tombland.
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