4. BARDFIELD SALING. (D.c.)
(O.S. 6 in. xxiv. N.E.)
Bardfield Saling is a small parish with no village,
about 5 m. N.W. of Braintree. The Church is the
principal monument, and was formerly a chapel
of Great Bardfield.
(1). Parish Church of St. Peter and St. Paul
stands near the middle of the parish. The walls
are of flint rubble with dressings of shelly oolite
and clunch; the roofs are tiled. The church,
consisting of the present Nave, South Aisle, and
West Tower, and possibly a S. porch, was built in the
first half of the 14th century, but was probably left
unfinished at the time of the Black Death, 1348–9.
It was consecrated in 1380, when the Chancel
was added. In the 19th century the chancel was
shortened at the E. end, the South Porch was added,
and the church generally restored.
Bardfield Saling Parish Church of St Peter and St Paul.
The round tower is one of a group in the N.W.
part of the county, and an unusually late example.
Architectural Description—All the original details of the chancel are of c. 1380, and those of the
rest of the church of the first half of the 14th century,
except where otherwise stated. The Chancel
(10½ ft. by 16 ft.) has a modern E. wall and window.
The N. and S. walls have each a window of two
trefoiled ogee lights with tracery in a segmental-pointed head; the label is moulded and the rear
arch has a hollow-chamfered rib. The chancel-arch is two-centred and of two orders, the outer
hollow-chamfered and the inner moulded; on the
E. side the moulded jambs have each one semi-octagonal shaft and two semi-circular shafts with
moulded capitals and a chamfered plinth; S. of
the chancel-arch is an ogee-headed squint, which
has been cut down to the floor level.
The Nave (58 ft. by 20 ft.) has, on the E. gable,
the base of an old cross. In the N. wall are two
windows, the eastern is of two trefoiled ogee lights
with flowing tracery in a two-centred head;
the western window is of two pointed lights with
a circle in a two-centred head. Further W. is the
N. doorway, now blocked; it has jambs and
two-centred arch of two moulded orders with a
moulded label. The S. arcade is of three bays, and
has two-centred arches of two moulded orders with
moulded labels which have foliated head-stops; the
columns are of quatrefoil plan, with keeled rolls
between the foils, and moulded capitals and bases;
the responds have attached half-columns; at
the W. end of the wall is a window of two trefoiled ogee lights with tracery in a segmental-pointed head under a plain label. Further E. is
the S. doorway which is similar to the N. doorway,
but is not blocked; above it outside, is a recessed
arch, covered with plaster, and probably indicating
a former S. porch.
The South Aisle (34 ft. by 9 ft.) has, in the E.
wall, a window of three trefoiled ogee lights with
flowing tracery in a two-centred head; the
label and all the various parts are moulded.
In the S. wall are two windows, each of two
trefoiled lights with tracery in a segmental-pointed
head; the details are similar to those of the window
in the E. wall. The S.W. angle was rebuilt, probably when the former S. porch was destroyed.
The West Tower (11½ ft. in diameter) is of the
same date as the nave and is circular on plan,
and of three stages, with a plain parapet and two
gargoyles. The doorway, on the E., has chamfered
jambs and a two-centred arch of two moulded
orders with a moulded label and head-stops;
high above it, but below the roof of the nave, is
a window of one trefoiled light. The ground
stage has three windows facing respectively N.,
S. and W., and each of one trefoiled light. The
second stage has two windows, similar to the others
and facing S. and W. The bell-chamber has four
windows facing N., S., E. and W., and each of
two cinquefoiled lights with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head. The stair-turret is lighted by
The Roof of the chancel is ceiled with plaster,
and has moulded wall-plates of the 14th century.
The roof of the nave is also ceiled, and has four
hollow-chamfered tie-beams and moulded wallplates.
Fittings—Brasses and Indents. Indent: In
chancel—of man and woman, and inscription
plate, mid 15th - century. Font; octagonal
bowl with ogee-headed panels, panelled stem,
possibly late 15th-century. Glass: In nave—in
tracery of N.E. window, foliated ornament, 14th
century. Niche: In E. gable of nave—pointed,
14th-century. Panelling: In nave—incorporated
in two modern pews, elaborate panels of c. 1625.
Piscinæ: In S. aisle—with moulded trefoiled
ogee head and label, 14th-century, drain destroyed;
lying loose in piscina, roughly worked bowl,
apparently of pillar-piscina, enriched with crude
acanthus foliage, date uncertain. Pulpit: hexagonal, with diminishing pilasters at the angles, and
on each side panels carved with arches in perspective, c. 1625. Screen: In chancel—now placed
against E. wall, of two bays, each of four trefoiled
ogee lights with quatrefoiled tracery, moulded
mullions and posts, and richly moulded head-beam,
14th-century. Sedile: In S. aisle—sill of S.E.
window carried down low to form seat, splays
cut back and with cinquefoiled squinches.
(2). Homestead Moat, at Parsonage Farm, 200
yards N.W. of the church.
(3). Pollard's Farm, house and moat, ¼ m.
N.N.E. of the church. The House is of two storeys,
timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled.
It was built in the 17th century and has modern
additions at each end. The original central
chimney-stack has grouped diagonal shafts. Inside
the building one room has an open timber ceiling.
The Moat surrounding the house is very imperfect.
Condition—Of house good.
(4). Farmhouse, 70 yards E. of the church, is of
two storeys with attics and a cellar; the walls
are timber-framed and plastered, and the roofs
are tiled. It was built in the second half of the
16th century, on an L-shaped plan with the wings
extending towards the N. and W. Late in the
17th century the N. wing was extended further N.
The W. wing formerly extended further E., as a
chamfered beam at that end, now visible externally,
was formerly within the building. The original
central chimney-stack has moulded and enriched
capping and a shaft with diagonal pilasters.
Interior—The original Hall in the middle of the
N. wing has moulded ceiling-beams and joists;
the N.W. wall has chamfered studs forming panels.
At the head of the cellar staircase is an original
ledged door of moulded battens. A ceiling-beam
with mortises for uprights shews the position of
the former N. end of the N. wing. The sitting-room
in the W. wing has moulded beams dividing the
ceiling into three bays. On the first floor, the rooms
over the Hall and sitting-room have open timber
ceilings, and original fireplaces, now blocked; the
fire-place in the W. wing has a three-centred
head; there are three original doors similar to
that on the ground floor.
The following monuments, unless otherwise
described, are of the 17th century, and of two
storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs
are tiled or thatched. Some of the buildings have
original chimney-stacks, wide fireplaces and exposed ceiling-beams.
Condition—Good, or fairly good, unless noted.
(5). Cottage, 50 yards N. of (4), was built
c. 1600, and has a modern addition at the E. end.
The original central chimney-stack has two
grouped shafts, set diagonally.
(6). Cottage, on the W. side of the road, 600 yards
S.S.E. of the church, was built c. 1600, and has a late
17th-century addition at the N. end. The original
central chimney-stack has a shaft, cross-shaped
on plan, and set diagonally.
Condition—Bad, partly ruinous.
(7). Cottages, two in one range, opposite (6), with
an 18th-century extension at the N.W. end. Inside
the building in the N.E. wall, is an original window
with diamond-shaped mullions, now blocked.
(8). Taborsfield Cottages, two tenements, on the
N.W. side of the Stebbing Road, ¾ m. S.E. of the
church, were built probably early in the 18th
century. There are several old casement windows.
(9). Pigeon House, at Woolpits Farm, 700 yards
E.S.E. of the church, is square and built of red
brick; the roof is pyramidal with a timber lantern
or cot. Inside the building an upper floor has been
inserted; the clay nests remain on that floor.
(10). Elms Farm, house and barns, 1,100 yards
N.E. of the church. The House was built late in
the 15th century on the usual mediæval plan with
the Hall in the middle, the Solar on the E. and the
Buttery on the W. A chimney-stack and an upper
floor were inserted in the Hall c. 1600, and the
Buttery wing was possibly pulled down at the same
time. The house was repaired in 1752 and 1870.
The upper storey of the Solar projects on the N.
front, and has curved brackets. The central
chimney-stack of c. 1600 has grouped diagonal
shafts. Inside the building, in the E. wall, are
two original doorways with four-centred heads;
they are now blocked, but formerly opened into
the Screens. The roof of the Solar is ceiled in,
but the curved braces of the middle truss are
The Barns, two, W. of the house, are both of five
bays. One barn is of the 15th or 16th century,
and the other, N.W. of the first, is of the 17th
century. Both have weather-boarded walls.
(11). Cottage, two tenements, at Four Elms,
1 m. N.E. of the church. The N. tenement is
an 18th-century or modern addition.
(12). New Green Farm, house and barn, 1,150
yards N.N.E. of the church. The House has an
18th-century addition at the E. end. The original
central chimney-stack has diagonal pilasters and
The Barn, N.E. of the house, is of late 16th-century date, and of three bays with aisles. The
walls are weather-boarded.
(13). Cottage, 120 yards N.E. of (12), has an
original central chimney-stack with a shaft, cross-shaped on plan, and set diagonally.