The Sussex Coast - online book

A Literary & Historical travel guide to the Sussex Coast

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WINCHELSEA                          377
from shafts; there is a gateway with quatrefoils in the spandrels of its arch.
Over the peaceful valley of the Brede, close to Winchelsea on the Hastings road, is Icklesham, a village remarkable for its most interesting old church of several styles, a sanctuary convenient and beautiful that knows not right angle nor straight line, and seems particularly to reflect the spirit of Sussex. The nave has three Norman arches aside, pierced apparently through older but not pre-Conquest walls; the round pillars have curious caps, palm-leaves, scales, scallops, &c, in part doubtless suggested by Crusaders. The south aisle has its original little Norman windows and corresponding arch at the east end. The north aisle has been relighted in Perpendicular times, but at its east end a Norman arch with round responds and nail-head ornament opens to the tower, likewise a Norman composition, rib-vaulted with three shafts in each corner as in the holy of holies at Bishopstone. Without it has plain pilasters, and the upper stage has shafted double windows. The east tower arch is an Early English insertion, and it opens into a beautiful chapel built during the first period of the same style with lancets and mural arcading. There open into the chancel two sharply pointed arches, whose responds and pier have delicate corner-shafts, and the pier has jamb-shafts too. The nave arch of the chancel is of similar character, but its windows are later— Decorated, in point of fact mostly modern. On the south three arches with octagonal pillars open to the early fourteenth-century south chapel, which has beautiful mural arcading, a trefoiled piscina and Decorated windows, the east one of four lights.
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