8. BRAMPTON (C.e.).
(O.S. 6 in. (a)XXI N.E., (b)XXII N.W.)
Brampton is a parish and village 2 m. W. of
Huntingdon. The church is the principal monument, and Pepys Farm (2), though of little structural interest, was the property and occasional
residence of Samuel Pepys. Pauline Jackson,
widow, is commemorated by a floor-slab in the west
end of the nave as "last of ye family of ye Peps
in this parish," 1689.
a(1). Parish Church of St. Mary stands on the
E. side of the village. The walls generally are of
rubble with some pebbles but the tower and W. end
of the church are faced with ashlar; the dressings
are of Barnack and Ketton stone; the roofs are
covered with lead and slates. The Chancel was
re-built c. 1310–20 with a vestry on the N. side. The
chancel-arch, Nave and North and South Aisles
were re-built probably in the first half of the 15th
century. The West Tower was added, or, more
probably, re-built in 1635, when the W. ends of the
aisles were also re-built or refaced. The church was
extensively restored in 1878 when the 15th-century North and South Porches were largely
re-built. In 1897 the North Vestry was enlarged
and practically re-built.
The church is of some architectural interest,
especially the dated tower of 1635. Among the
fittings the Communion rails and the screen are
Architectural Description—The Chancel (42½ ft.
by 18½ ft.) is of early 14th-century date, and has
an E. window with a two-centred head and modern
mullions and tracery but with old jambs and
external sill. The N. and S. walls have each a wall-arcade with two-centred arches of one moulded
order; dividing the two bays in the N. wall is a
triple attached shaft partly restored and with a
moulded capital and modern base; the arcade
in the S. wall is of four bays with a triple attached
shaft between the two easternmost bays; the
third bay is much narrower and the arch springs
from corbel-capitals, one with a short length of
triple shaft below it and the other carved with
foliage; the two responds of the N. arcade and the
E. respond of the S. arcade have moulded capitals
carved with foliage; between the arches and above
the capitals are three corbels, one on the N. and two
on the S., carved with heads or foliage. In the N.
wall, under the arcade, are two partly restored
windows, each of two trefoiled lights with a
quatrefoil and a quatre-foiled spandrel, respectively,
in a two-centred head with a moulded label and
head-stops; further E. is a doorway with chamfered jambs and two-centred arch; below the
western window is a squint from the rood-loft
staircase. In the S. wall are three windows, the
two easternmost of two trefoiled lights with a
quatrefoil in a two-centred head with a moulded
label and beast-head stops; the westernmost
window is similar but with plain pointed lights
and with a square-headed 'low-side' window,
beneath the western light; in the narrow third
bay of the wall-arcade is a doorway with chamfered
jambs and two-centred head. The 15th-century
chancel-arch is two-centred and of two moulded
orders; the moulded responds have each three
attached shafts with moulded capitals and bases;
N. of the arch, on the W. face of the wall, is the
upper doorway of the rood-loft staircase; it has
rebated jambs and four-centred head.
The North Vestry is modern except for part of
the E. wall which contains an early 14th-century
window of one lancet-light, much restored.
The Nave (55½ ft. by 22 ft.) has N. and S. arcades
each of five bays and of the same date and detail
as the chancel-arch; the columns have each four
attached shafts. The 15th-century clearstorey has
on each side five windows, each of two cinque-foiled
lights with a quatre-foiled spandrel in a four-centred head.
The North Aisle (14½ ft. wide) is of the 15th
century, and has heavy buttresses brought out
to a point on the face and with large carved
gargoyles, mostly ancient; the wall-face, both
inside and out, is set back below the windows in
the E. and N. walls. In the E. wall is a window
of five cinque-foiled lights with tracery in a four-centred head with moulded reveals and label.
Across the S.E. angle is the lower doorway to the
rood-loft staircase; it has a square head. In
the N. wall are four windows, each of four cinque-foiled lights with vertical tracery in a four-centred
head with moulded reveals and label; the N.
doorway has moulded jambs and two-centred
arch. In the W. wall is a 15th-century window
re-set in the 17th century and generally similar
to those in the N. wall.
Brampton, the Parish Church of St Mary the Virgin
The South Aisle (14½ ft. wide) is of the 15th
century, with buttresses and other details similar
to those in the N. aisle. In the E. wall is a window
similar to the E. window in the N. aisle, but with
differing tracery. In the S. wall are four partly
restored windows, similar to the corresponding
windows in the N. aisle; the S. doorway has
moulded jambs, two-centred arch and label.
In the W. wall is a window similar to the corresponding window in the N. aisle.
The West Tower (13 ft. by 12½ ft.) was built
in 1635 and is of three stages (Plate 21)
with a moulded plinth and embattled parapet
with pinnacles at the angles and a carved
string-course; at the angles are carved gargoyles.
The tower-arch is two-centred and of two
orders, the outer moulded and continuous and
the inner chamfered and resting on attached
shafts, with moulded and embattled capitals
and moulded bases. The W. window is of
three trefoiled lights with tracery in a high
four-centred head with a moulded label; the
re-set 14th-century W. doorway has jambs and two-centred arch of three moulded orders, with a
moulded label; above the doorway is the raised
inscription "AN. DNI. 1635," and above the
window is a panel with the same date; the ground-stage is divided into two storeys externally by an
embattled string-course on the W. front. The
second stage has in the W. wall a window of one
trefoiled light with a moulded label and head-stops. The bell-chamber has in each wall a window
of two trefoiled ogee lights with a quatrefoil in a
two-centred head with an ogee label and a foliated
finial and head-stops; the windows have each an
embattled transom. The lowest loop, lighting
the stair-turret, is re-used 14th-century material;
the loop has a trefoiled head with remains of a
crocketed gable above it.
The North Porch is of 15th-century origin but
has been very extensively restored. It is contrived between two of the aisle-buttresses and has
an outer archway with moulded jambs and two-centred head. The roof is of barrel-form with
two chamfered wall-ribs.
The South Porch is of 15th-century origin, but
has been almost entirely re-built. Flanking the
outer archway are two niches with 15th-century
carved brackets and canopies with trefoiled and
sub-cusped heads and ribbed vaults enriched with
small carved bosses; above the archway is a
similar but much smaller niche, containing a
The Roof of the nave is of the 15th century, of
low-pitched form, and of five bays with moulded
or chamfered main timbers; the principal rafters
have curved braces forming two-centred arches
with traceried spandrels, and the main intersections, with the purlins and ridge, have bosses
carved with foliage, heads and human and beastfaces; the bosses of the W. truss are of the 17th
century, as are the ornamental brackets which
support it; the other trusses rest on stone corbels
carved with angels holding shields, a bearded man,
and an angel holding a broken object. The 15th-century roof of the N. aisle is of pent form and
of six bays with moulded main timbers; the
lower ends of the principals have curved braces,
with traceried spandrels and each principal has
a boss carved with foliage, human and beast-heads; the stone corbels are carved with a man's
head, and angels holding shields charged with (a)
the emblems of the Passion; (b) See of Canterbury;
(c) See of Ely; (d) a cross, etc. The 15th-century
roof of the S. aisle is similar to that over the N.
aisle, but is of five main bays; the boss of the
easternmost truss is carved with a small figure
with a target; the westernmost boss is perhaps
of the 17th century; the stone corbels on the S.
wall are of late or re-used material except that at
the W. end, which is carved with a reclining figure
of a man.
Fittings—Altar-frontal: In S. aisle—of wood,
with enriched frame, bands of conventional
foliage on styles and rails, with cherub-head and
birds, two large panels painted with flower-design;
Italian, painted and gilt, 17th-century. Bells:
five, and a priest's bell; 1st by Watts, 1600;
2nd by Thomas Norris, 1659; 3rd by Watts,
16th-century, inscribed "Ambros"; 5th by
James Keene, 1630. Coffin: In churchyard—
E. of S. porch, stone coffin, with shaped head.
Communion Rails: of oak, with turned balusters,
brought from elsewhere, and repaired top rail,
early 17th-century. Doors: In N. doorway—
of nail-studded battens, with hollow-chamfered
frame and fillets planted on, 15th-century.
In S. doorway—of two leaves (Plate 161),
of nail-studded battens, with chamfered frame
and fillets planted on, forming six panels with
cinque-foiled ogee heads, head of door above
filled with elaborate flowing tracery, 15th-century, partly repaired. Font: (Plate 9)
octagonal bowl with cusped or traceried panel
in each face, one enclosing a rose and one
a shield with St. George's cross, chamfered top
and moulded under-side, carved with two faces,
two rosettes, a four-leaf flower and two shields,
one with a plain cross and one with a cross paty,
late 14th- or early 15th-century, partly repaired,
stem modern. Locker: In chancel—in N. wall,
rectangular recess with modern doors, chamfered
projecting sill with round piscina-drain, probably
early 14th-century, sill re-set. Monuments and Floor-slabs. Monuments: In S. aisle—across S.E. angle,
(1) to Sir John Bernard, Bart., 1682, white marble
wall-monument, with gadrooned base, eared architrave, enriched cornice supporting pedestal with
bust in wig, and cartouche-of-arms. In tower—on
S. wall, (2) to John Miller 81, and Thomas, his
son 83, freestone cartouche with scrolls, swags
and cherub-head, black marble inscription-panel
in middle. In churchyard—on S.E. buttress of
S. aisle, (3) to E. Ashton, widow, 1680, inscription
on stonework; S. of S. aisle, (4) to William Standish,
1694, head-stone. Floor-slabs: In nave—at W.
end, (1) to Paulina Jackson, widow, 1689, "last
of ye family of ye Peps in this parish"; (2) to
Elizabeth Young, 1710 (or 1719). Piscinae: In
chancel—with moulded jambs and trefoiled head
with gabled crocketed label and defaced side
pinnacles, finial missing, large octofoiled drain,
shelf of stone in front and of wood behind, early
14th-century. In N. aisle—in S. wall, with hollow-chamfered jambs and cinque-foiled head, 15th-century, shelf modern. In S. aisle—in S. wall,
large, semi-octagonal, projecting bracket, with
carved leaf, rose and three leopards' heads in the
hollow of the moulding, octagonal dished drain,
with remains of boss over orifice, early 16th-century,
not in situ. Loose in tower—square stone, with
round drain in top. Plate: includes a stand-paten,
perhaps of late 17th-century date and inscribed
"Brampton", and a large brass alms-dish
(Plate 137) with repoussé ornament including
two bands of running stags with hounds, and
in the middle a medallion of the Annunciation,
surrounded by a defaced black-letter inscription, 16th-century, German; on rim, two added
inscriptions "E.B. C.W. 1618" with a defaced
shield-of-arms and "Ipsum Midd. 1697."
Screen: Under chancel-arch—of oak, and of
three main bays including doorway; side bays
each of five open upper lights with cinque-foiled
ogee heads and tracery, plain close lower panels;
behind responds of chancel-arch, two plain narrow
bays, one on each side; doorway with doors of
two folds each of two lights, similar to the side
bays but with differing tracery, close moulded
lower panels; continuous moulded head and
chamfered middle rail, mid to late 14th-century.
Stalls: with misericords, now in the Museum of
Archaeology, Cambridge. Miscellanea: In nave
—on E. face of tower, fragments of 12th-century
cheveron-ornament, re-used in masonry. Loose in
tower—length of moulded shaft with rolls at angles
and a row of dog-tooth ornaments up each side,
13th-century, perhaps part of the shaft of a cross;
part possibly of same shaft, built into modern
heating-chamber, with other fragments.
b(2). Pepys Farm, house, on the S. side of the
road, 400 yards N.E. of the church, is of two
storeys with attics; the walls are partly of
plastered timber-framing and partly of brick;
the roofs are tiled. The timber-framed N. part
of the house was built in the middle of the
16th century and to this was added, early in the
18th century, the brick wing on the S.; there is
a modern addition to the W. of this wing. The
original block has 18th-century brick walls to the
ground-storey and a plaster cove to the eaves.
The W. room and the room above it have 17th-century windows with solid oak frames and
mullions and iron casements. The central
chimney-stack has three grouped shafts and there
is another stack at the W. end; both are of
the 17th century. The gables at the E. and
W. end of the original block have moulded
barge-boards. The early 18th-century addition is
of red brick with a chimney-stack of the same
date. Inside the building, the original block has
chamfered ceiling-beams and two rooms have
open timbered ceilings. In the W. room on the
ground-floor are some pieces of 17th-century
panelling. The first floor has some cambered
beams in the walls and partitions and one fire-place has a cambered lintel. In the attics are
two old battened doors.
a(3). Bridge (Plate 131), across brook, 180
yards S.S.W. of the church, is of four spans, the
three northern of brick and the southernmost of
stone; all have been re-built in comparatively
recent times but the piers have some old masonry,
and stone cut-waters on the E. side, which may
be of 17th-century or earlier date.
Condition—Good, much altered.
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 and exposed ceiling-beams.
Condition—Good or fairly good.
a(4). Old Black Bull Inn, 50 yards S.S.W. of
the church, was built perhaps late in the 16th
century and has 18th-century and modern additions
at the back. The 17th-century central chimney-stack has square grouped shafts.
a(5). Cottage, on the E. side of the road, 100 yards
S. of (3).
a(6). Cottage, on the S. side of High Street, 320
yards W. of the church.
a(7). Vine Cottage, 250 yards N.W. of (6), has
an original central chimney-stack, of three shafts,
with diagonal projections in front. Inside the
building, the N.W. room has a late 17th-century
overmantel, probably reduced in width; it has
three arched bays, divided by pilasters and finished
with a dentilled cornice. There are also a few
fragments of original panelling.
a(8). Cottage, on the N. side of the road, at
West End, 1,100 yards W.N.W. of the church.
a(9). Beerhouse, 60 yards W. of (8), has been
refronted with brick.
a(10). Cottage, 100 yards W. of (9).
a(11). Base of Cross, at road-side, 25 yards S. of
(9). A stone base octagonal on top and square
below, with socket for shaft, probably 14th-century, now used for well-head.