Tag Archives: church

19 – Old Wall

St Mary's wall
This is part of the chancel wall of The Hemel parish church, St Mary’s. I will later write more about the church as it is not only one of the few Norman churches in Hertfordshire, it is far larger and more imposing than you would expect from what, in the 12th Century, would have been a smallish agricultural hamlet. There will therefore be a picture to show the 200ft leaded spire, which is really quite elegant.For the moment though I want to concentrate on building materials and how it was built from an agglomeration of bits and pieces, even though it is mainly flint. There is even the on bit of Roman brick.

When I look at this and other flint buildings in my area I tend to contrast them with those of Sussex and find them rough and ready. It is almost as if the Sussex builders found the material interesting, packed it densely and used it with care and artistry, whilst those in Hertfordshire seemed to slap it in and I can almost imagine them thinking ‘That’ll do’.

Later this year I will go to Sussex and take some pictures of flint work to show the difference. I will also take some pictures of St Albans to show how Roman bricks have been reused