The West Tower

The lower part of the west tower of St. Edmund's is probably the oldest visible fabric of the church, possibly dating to the early 13th century with a small lancet window in the south wall.  The rest of the church  - the aisles, chancel, aisles, north porch and upper part of the tower were added in the 14th century. 

The tower may have been added to later in the 15th to 18th century; certainly it was in the 18th century when the corner pinnacles were added to the battlements of the tower.  During the 19th century a new west window was added and the archway from the chancel to the nave was opened (the tower having acted as a store for many years). In the 20th century this changed again with the infill of windows and doors seen today, once again creating a useful vestry space for the church. 

The entrance in the north wall was probably created in the Victorian period. If you look closely to the left of the door outside you can seen the shadow of an older round headed entrance or window. Today this entrance is used as the main entrance to the church during events and services, otherwise the tower is closed when there is no one in attendance but the church is open. 

The belfry (now reached by a ladder following the insertion of a new chamber below) contains a "ring" of five bells - the treble, fourth and tenor bells date to 1669 whilst the third is dated 1682 and the second 1871.  the tenor bell is inscribed with "I ring to sermon with a lusti bome that all may come and none may stay at home" whilst the treble is engraved with "Cantae Domino Canticum Novum" - Latin for "Sing unto the Lord a New Song." Also to be found in the belfry are numerous plaques commemorating benefactors to the church from Zouche Tate in the 17th century right up to the 20th century. 

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