77 WILLERSLEY (B.d.)
(O.S. 6 in. XXIV, S.E.)
Willersley is a small parish on the left bank of the
Wye, 6 m. S.S.E. of Kington. The church and
Willersley Court are the principal monuments.
(1). Parish Church of St. Mary Magdalene
stands in the N.E. corner of the parish. The walls are
of local sandstone rubble with dressings of the same
material; the roofs are covered with stone slates.
The church, consisting of continuous Chancel and Nave,
was built after the middle of the 12th century. The
South Porch was added, perhaps, in the 17th century.
The church was restored in 1877, and the W. wall and
bell-cote are modern.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (16¾ ft. by
17½ ft.) has a 14th-century E. window of one light with
rebated and moulded jambs and modern pointed head
and sill. In the N. wall is a narrow lancet, entirely
modern externally. In the S. wall is a two-light
window, of which the jambs and splays only are old.
There is no chancel-arch.
The Church, Plan
The Nave (39 ft. by 17 ft.) has, in the N. wall a
window of one segmental-headed light, perhaps of
12th-century origin, but entirely modern externally.
In the S. wall is a window similar to the S. window of
the chancel, but the E. jamb only is old; the mid 12th-century S. doorway has moulded jambs and lintel,
the latter carved with diapered designs of various
types; the rear-arch is round. In the W. wall is a
The South Porch is possibly of the 17th century,
timber-framed on dwarf stone walls. The outer
entrance has chamfered posts and curved braces below
the tie-beam; there is a similar truss against the wall
of the church. The side walls have each four openings,
divided by posts.
The Roof of the church is of 14th or 15th-century
date, partly restored; it is of five bays with four braced
collar-beam trusses; modern tie-beams have been
inserted. A short distance from the W. wall is a 16th
or 17th-century queen-post truss supporting the bell-turret.
Fittings—Bell: one, inaccessible. Communion Table:
In vestry—with turned legs, moulded top-rails and
stretchers, 17th-century. Communion Rails: with
moulded rail and turned balusters, early 17th-century.
Door: In S. doorway—of nail-studded battens, with
strap-hinges, probably 17th-century. Floor-slabs: In
chancel—(1) to Elizabeth, wife of Richard Higgins,
1705–6, with later inscription; (2) to Elinar, daughter
of Roger Higgins, 1703; (3) to Andrew Higgins,
1704–5. Panelling: Incorporated in reredos—three
enriched panels with guilloche-ornament on the
framing, early 17th-century. Incorporated in front
pews—eight panels carved with roses, conventional
trees and geometrical designs, early 17th-century.
Miscellanea: Loose in chancel—small cherub-head,
from monument, 17th-century.
(2). Willersley Court, house and outbuildings,
70 yards N. of the church. The House is of two
storeys with cellars; the walls are timber-framed and
the roofs are slate-covered. It was built early in the
16th-century on an H-shaped plan with the cross-wings
at the E. and W. ends. The S. front has been faced
with 18th-century brickwork, but the N. and W. sides
have exposed timber-framing in squares. Inside the
building the ground-floor of the main block has
original moulded ceiling-beams and joists. A room
in the W. wing has exposed joists, laid flat; a second
room, in the same wing, is lined with early 17th-century
panelling, having a frieze and cornice and panelled
door. On the first floor, one room is lined with early
17th-century panelling, as in the room below; the fireplace (Plate 51) is flanked by fluted pilasters and has an
overmantel of five arcaded panels; the E. and W. walls
have each an original moulded wall-post with linenfold panels on the face, cut out of the solid. Elsewhere
there are two fireplaces with early 18th-century moulded
The Outbuilding, S.E. of the house, is of early 17th-century date and of two storeys, timber-framed. There
are also two timber-framed 17th-century barns of
seven and five bays respectively.
(3). Wydenhams, cottage, nearly ¾ m. S.S.W. of the
church, is of two storeys, timber-framed, and with tiled
roofs. It was built probably early in the 18th century
and subsequently heightened. The timber-framing and
some ceiling-beams are exposed.