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Coleshill
All Saints' Church

Pevsner described Coleshill Church as "an odd group from outside, and.....odder and more confusing inside". There is certainly a range of roof levels, but the mix is not displeasing. The porch appears to have a room above, but within this is seen to be merely a galleried arrangement.

The arcading of the nave shows the building's origins in the late 12th century, though much of the place was built the following century. The tower was added in the 15th century and has some interesting gargoyles. The church's main feature is the southern Lady Chapel, a chantry of the Pleydell family founded by Thomas Pleydell, in 1499, but largely rebuilt by his descendant, Sir Mark Stuart Pleydell, in 1787. The space is dominated by huge box pews, but hidden away behind them is effigy of Thomas Pleydell's wife. Unfortunately, the founder's monument has disappeared, but a large brass plaque, of 18th century date, records details of his will and a long family tree, whilst nearby, a mutilated angel holds the arms of his daughter, Rose Champneys.

Further monuments to Sir Henry Pratt, the builder of Coleshill House and his Pleydell descendants can been seen in the chancel. Sir Henry and his wife recline to the south of the altar, Sir Mark Stuart Pleydell has a vast gothic monument to the north. Most eye-catching, however, is the fine memorial to the latter's daughter, Viscountess Folkestone where cherubs weep over roundelled busts of the Viscountess and her husband. The lady died in 1750. One of her descendants, the Earl of Radnor, had the unusual quatrefoil east window inserted in the chancel. The excellent early 16th century glass was brought back from Angers in 1787, but looks rather odd in this country setting.

 
 

    Nash Ford Publishing 2001. All Rights Reserved.