31. FLETTON (C.a.).
(O.S. 6 in. II S.E.)
Fletton is a village and small parish adjoining
Peterborough on the S. The church is the principal monument.
(1). Village Site. The area between the
railway-line and Stanground Lode, S. of the
Nene, was occupied early in the Roman period,
particularly at a spot half-a-mile S. of St. Margaret's
Church. Many objects, chiefly potsherds, were
found in clay-digging in the London Brick Co.'s
No. 1 Yard and in the Fletton brick-yard on the
W. of the Great Northern line between 1910 and
and 1912. No definite traces of buildings, but
some levelled floors, numerous pits, about 5 ft.
deep and 8 ft. to 12 ft. in diameter, containing
much pottery, and about fifteen burials, were
observed. A little S. of these was a circular,
steyned (corn-brash) well, 20 ft. deep and 3½ ft.
in external diameter; in it were a bottle of La
Marne type probably of the first century, a coarse
grey urn, possibly of the second century, cooking-pots, etc.
In June, 1904, in this same brick-yard (London
Brick Co.'s) a pit 4 ft. deep and 3 ft. wide was
opened. It was filled with debris, black soil,
bones, potsherds, etc. (See also sub Woodstone).
(2). Parish Church of St. Margaret stands in
the village. The walls are of uncoursed rubble with
dressings of Barnack stone. The roofs are covered
with stone tiles, slates and lead. The Chancel was
built c. 1150 and shortly afterwards c. 1160–70
the North Chapel was added, the chancel-arch
built and the North Aisle of the Nave added.
About 1300 the South Aisle was added, the nave
lengthened or the N. arcade altered and the North
Vestry and West Tower added; the N. aisle was
re-built at the same time. The rood-loft staircase
was added late in the 15th century. The church
was restored in 1872, the North Aisle re-built and
the South Porch added. In 1917 the top of the
spire was re-built, after being struck by lightning.
The church contains some 12th-century work of
average interest. Among the fittings the pre-Conquest carvings and 12th-century cross are
Architectural Description—The Chancel (28½ ft.
by 13 ft.) is of mid 12th-century date and has
clasping buttresses of ashlar, two external string-courses, and an internal string-course to the E.
end, returned a short distance along the side
walls; the eaves have a 12th-century corbel-table
of 'nebuly' form. The E. window is of c. 1300
and of three trefoiled lights with modern net-tracery in a two-centred head with moulded internal
and external labels and mask-stops. In the N.
wall is a doorway with chamfered jambs and square
head, probably of c. 1300; the arcade is of two
bays of c. 1170, with round arches of two chamfered
orders with a grooved and chamfered label,
responds with chamfered imposts, and a round
column with scalloped capital and chamfered
abacus of cross-shaped plan and a moulded base on
a square plinth; the thicker and slightly earlier
wall to the E. of the arcade is finished with an
ashlar arris. In the S. wall are two early 14th-century windows each of two trefoiled ogee lights
with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head with
moulded labels; below the sills is a moulded
string-course of the same date; further W. is
a 'low-side' window of one square-headed light,
rebated externally; between the two eastern
windows is a blocked 12th-century window, only
visible externally. The chancel-arch of c. 1170 is
two-centred, but somewhat distorted, and of two
chamfered orders; the responds have each one
free and one half-round attached shaft, the former
with water-leaf and the latter with a fluted capital
and both with hollow-chamfered abaci and moulded
bases partly restored; the small shafts are modern.
The North Vestry is of c. 1300 and has in the E.
wall a window of three square-headed lights with a
horizontal label and mask-stops. In the W. wall
is a cruciform loop with lobed ends.
The Nave (40¾ ft. by 14 ft.) has a N. arcade
(Plate 6) of three bays; the two eastern
arches are of c. 1160, round and of two chamfered orders; the piers are cylindrical and have
scalloped capitals with grooved and chamfered
abaci, rebated at the angles on the nave
side; the moulded bases have square plinths;
the responds have attached half-columns; the
capital of the E. respond has been partly
cut away and defaced for the former rood-loft
which was approached by an opening above
the E. haunch of the arch, now blocked with
brick and plastered over; the W. respond has
apparently been re-set, either in its original position
or one bay further W.; the W. arch of the arcade
is of two chamfered orders and is double the width
of the others; it is of segmental-pointed form with
a moulded label and is of c. 1300. The thicker wall
of the earlier arcade-wall is finished above the
second pier with a chamfered arris, which appears
to have had a moulded stop below the present
clearstorey window. The S. arcade is of c. 1300
and of three bays with stilted segmental-pointed
arches of two chamfered orders and moulded labels
with head or mask-stops; the slender octagonal
columns and semi-octagonal responds have the
mouldings of the capitals projected to take the
outer order of the arches; the bases are also
moulded. The clearstorey is of c. 1300 and has on
each side three windows each of two square-headed lights.
Fletton, the Parish Church of St Margaret.
The North Aisle is modern except for part of
the W. wall, which is of c. 1300 and has a moulded
internal string-course; in this wall is a window of
three graduated trefoiled lights with spandrels in a
two-centred head with a moulded label and mask-stops. In the S. wall of the aisle, between the
chancel and nave-arcades is the late 15th-century
doorway to the rood-loft staircase; it has rebated
jambs and four-centred head and retains the hooks
of the former door.
The South Aisle (7 ft. wide) has E. and W.
windows uniform with the W. window of the N.
aisle. In the S. wall are three windows, the two
western modern and the eastern of c. 1300 and of
three square-headed lights; the S. doorway, of
the same date, has jambs and two-centred arch of
two chamfered orders with a moulded label and
The West Tower (8 ft. square) is of c. 1300 and of
three stages finished with a moulded cornice with
ball-flower ornament, at the base of the spire.
The two-centred tower-arch is of three chamfered
orders with a moulded label, partly restored; the
two outer orders are continuous and the inner
order rests on semi-circular shafts with moulded
capitals. The W. window is of two trefoiled lights
with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head with a
moulded label and mask-stops. The second stage
has in the W. wall a window of a single trefoiled
light in a square head. The bell-chamber has in
each wall a window of two pointed lights with a
pierced spandrel in a two-centred head with a
moulded label. The broach-spire is octagonal and
of ashlar with two tiers of four lights; the windows
of the lower tier are each of two-pointed lights with
a blank spandrel in a gabled head; those of the
upper tier are each of one trefoiled light in a
Fittings—Bells: three, 1st by Edward Newcombe, first half of the 16th century; 2nd by
Tobias Norris, 1620; 3rd by William Wates, 1590.
Carvings: (Plate 58) In chancel—on S. wall,
two stones, (a) carved figure of angel with
flowered staff and standing in round-headed
panel with remains of inscription above; (b)
larger figure in similar panel with halo, no
wings and apparently a scroll in the right hand,
both pre-Conquest, perhaps 10th-century. Incorporated in two E. buttresses of chancel, six
carved stones (Plate 58)—(a) half figure of
a winged and nimbed angel holding staff, rest of
panel filled with conventional foliage; (b) same
subject as (a) but positions reversed; (c) panel
with vine-scroll ornament, etc.; (d) three busts,
probably of apostles, under round-headed arcade
with conventional foliage above as in (a) and (b);
(e) parts of two panels on same stone, left with a
disc-shaped ornament, large bird and foliage, right,
scrolled foliage with birds; (f) panel with three
figures, two being bird-like monsters with a man in
the middle, figures separated by interlaced trees.
All the above are carved probably in yellow Ketton
stone apparently reddened in places by burning
and all are of pre-Conquest date, perhaps 8th-century, the figures bearing a close resemblance to
those on 'Hedda's' stone and the stone in the
S. transept of Peterborough cathedral. On the
S.E. buttress of the chancel is a square Barnackstone panel of foliage-diaper of the 12th century.
Coffins and Coffin-lid: In churchyard—E. of
chancel, fragments of two stone coffins with
shaped heads; at W. end, near gate—coped slab
with raised cross, 13th-century, broken. Cross:
W. of tower—standing cross (Plate 50) of
Barnack stone with tapering stem (1 ft. 1½ in. by
10 in. at base) and mutilated wheel-head; stem
cut short at bottom and with projecting moulded
band half way up; on W. face above band,
much defaced inscription apparently reading
"RADULFI FILIVS (W)IELM"; below band, upper
part of series of medallions with conventional
acanthus-ornament; one medallion complete
and containing a beast, perhaps the tiger and
mirror; on E. face above band, a large much
defaced animal, perhaps an Agnus Dei; below
band, medallions as on W. face, one with a sort of
antelope, looking backwards, the other defaced;
angles of cross with cable ornament, on N. face-coarse conventional acanthus-foliage, S. face much
defaced but with cross below, c. 1180; old moulded
base not belonging. Font: (Plate 9) octagonal
bowl with faces alternately panelled and fluted,
moulded under-edge and moulded stem with
moulded capital and base, probably late 16th-century. Locker: In N. aisle—re-set in N. wall,
rectangular, with rebated edges. Piscina: In
chancel—plain recess with chamfered jambs, no
drain, date uncertain. Seating: In N. aisle—two
15th-century bench-ends with popey-heads carved
with foliage and two angels holding shields, now
much defaced, incorporated in modern bench.
Sundial: On S.W. buttress of tower—incised sundial with iron gnomon, 17th- or 18th-century.
(3). Cross and moat, 140 yards E.N.E. of the
church. The cross, probably of the 15th century
and not in situ, has a square base, of Barnack stone,
with chamfered angles and a broken octagonal
shaft; near by lies a moulded capital probably
belonging to the cross.
The Moat, E. of the cross, is rectangular and
outside it are remains of a roadway and perhaps
(4). Outbuilding in field, 60 yards E. of the
church. The walls are of rubble with ashlar
dressings. The building, now ruinous, incorporates
walls of 15th- or early 16th-century date and a
doorway with chamfered jambs and four-centred
arch. The building has been altered and adapted
for use as a cowshed and there is no indication of
its original plan or purpose.
(5). Rectory, N.W. of the church, is of two
storeys with attics. The building is modern
except for a cross-wing at the E. end which is of
stone and was built probably in the 17th century.
Some mediæval masonry has been re-used in the
(6). House, on S. side of road 100 yards S. of the
church, is of one storey with attics; the walls are
of rubble and the roofs are covered with slates.
It was built probably late in the 17th century and
has at the W. end an original ashlar chimney-stack
with moulded cornice and necking.
(7). Cottage, on the N. side of the road 50 yards
W.N.W. of (6), is of one storey with attics; the
walls are of rubble and the roofs are covered with
slates. It was built probably late in the 17th century.
(8). Carved Stone on modern house about
250 yards W.S.W. of the church. The stone bears
an achievement of the quartered arms of Whitbrooke of Water Newton and is probably of early