Externally it may not be the prettiest church building, but it is my favourite.
Unheated and ancient, this place is surprisingly comfortable, even on a bitterly cold day.
The porch dates from the 1400's with later supports to try to keep it in place. It has the armorial shields of the Grantham family set into it.
Nearby Saltfleet used to be a bustling and prosperous port on the mouth of the Withern Eau, but when it silted up the population dwindled.
The bell tower has a definite tilt to the west, even though it is supported by extremely large Victorian buttresses.
|Looking to the front of the church (south side)|
Step through the porch and the massive church doors and this is what you will see.
A very plain and simple interior.
|Looking to the rear of the church (south side)|
This is the south chapel.
The reredos - the stone decoration on the altar wall - is quite rare and I am told that this is a fine medieval example.
There is a 'double' arcade of arches - the old and the "new" sit side by side, as though they couldn't quite wipe out all that history, or perhaps even back then they knew it needed extra support and kept them both.
|The arches from the south chapel|
The 11th century Norman arches(with scalloped detail) butt up to the 14th century single arch. I love quirky things like this. Almost an architectural traffic-jam.
The painted wooden screening is later.
|The arches viewed from the chancel, on the other side|
Walls are out of line, the roof lines are a bit wonky the style is very simple, incredibly beautiful.
It is possible to walk in and be amazed by the quirks, enjoy the architecture, or to simply soak up the atmosphere of a simple, well-loved, although redundant, country church.
I enjoy it for all of those reasons, and more.
|A glimpse of the Chancel from the south chapel|
People have long cared about this building, it has been well used, well loved.
Quite unlike poor old Skidbrooke Church, just a couple of miles away, and reputedly the most haunted church in Britain, although similar in style.
This is the view from the far side, the main body of the church.
Can you see the mellow light in the chancel?
The ancient roof timbers were installed over 600 years ago.
If you enlarge the photograph you will see how far the tower has slipped away from where the beams originally joined the wall.
This is the view towards the bell tower.
The wooden screening is 15th century.
Mellow light comes through the old panes of glass.
Many apologies for showing so many photographs, I feel rather like those people who invite you round for dinner and then subject you to viewing hundreds of their holiday snaps.
The main reason I love this old church is for the way it reaches out and enfolds me in the most wonderfully comforting embrace. You may think this is fanciful, spooky, even, but that is okay. I don't mind.
I would rather visit this church than any other - and I visit a lot of old church buildings. It is an interest of mine. All Saints' may have been declared redundant in 1973, but it still retains the essence of goodness, and I am not talking about religion.
I always leave there feeling refreshed, tranquil, comforted...although concerned about the way it continues to slip and slide on the marshy ground.