St Martin

Parclose Screens (2) – Photographs (PWDRO 244/4 & 244/5); around 1900

These screens represent much earlier work than the Lady Chapel seating and screens described below. A ‘parclose screen and other work for Liskeard Church, from original designs by Mr. Sedding’ were placed on display in June 1900 in an exhibition of wood carving, ancient and modern, in the Royal Hotel, Plymouth, and described as ‘charmingly executed’ (Western Morning News, 1900 p. 4). There are four parclose screens of similar design in St Martin’s church, but only two are shown in the Pinwill archive. These correspond to the NE and SW screens, which are dedicated to people who died in 1898 and 1899, respectively. It is possible, however, that all four screens were executed by Rashleigh, Pinwill & Co.

Liskeard Lady Chapel Bench End Angel
Bench End Angel in the Lady Chapel at Liskeard

Lady Chapel Seating – Photographs (PWDRO 116/59 & 244/2) R.F. Wheatly architect; 1927-37

Designs for the new Lady Chapel were produced in January 1927 and work progressed over the next ten years (CRO AD889/19 & X272/44/1-8). Funding appears to have come almost entirely from parishioners, as dedications abound, on seating, screens and panelling. In April 1928, it was reported that a pair of beautifully carved seats with desk fronts had been placed in the new Lady Chapel by Edward Hoskin of Cartuther Barton in memory of his two sons and his wife (Western Morning News, 1928). These are situated at the front of the chapel and are the most elaborate. The desk fronts feature a border of seaweed and fish, interlaced with a ribbon bearing part of the Magnificat, and the desk ends are finished on top with semi-kneeling angels, typical of Pinwill work, although modified by Wheatly from the original design by Sedding. Other seating was added later, including four benches dedicated in 1933 with ends bearing emblems of the donors (Western Morning News, 1933) and another designed in 1937 (CRO X272/44/1-8) and dedicated to, among others, George James Glencross, who died in 1927 aged 15.

Lady Chapel Screens (3) – Photograph (PWDRO 244/2) R.F. Wheatly architect; 1927-after 1934

The three screens that enclose the Lady Chapel were also erected as and when funds were available, with the eastern-most, shown in the photograph at PWDRO, being the first. It is a memorial to Dr William Nettle (died 1925), Vicar’s Warden for 40 years, and is dated 1927. The middle screen was designed in August 1927 (CRO X272/44/1-8) and features various musical instruments, although it is unclear when it was installed. The third screen may have been put in place in two stages, as a newspaper article of 1933 reports on the dedication of four benches and ‘a screen up to the transom’ (Western Morning News, 1933 p. 6) but there are no further details on its completion. It is a memorial to George Martyn of Tremedden, who died in June 1934 aged 89.

Lady Chapel Altar Rail – Photograph (PWDRO 244/2) R.F. Wheatly architect; after 1927

The altar Rail appears in the photographs at PWDRO and is featured in plans for the Lady Chapel dated January 1927 (CRO X272/44/1-8). It does not bear a dedication, but the cost may nevertheless have been met by donations.

Lady Chapel Lectern – Photograph (PWDRO 244/2) R.F. Wheatly architect; after 1927

A lectern with a square base is shown in the photographs at PWDRO, the footprint of which matches one shown in front of the altar rail in one of the plans for the Lady Chapel (CRO AD889/19). However, on a visit in August 2012 this lectern was not evident and may no longer be in use.

Lady Chapel Panelling – Newspaper article (Western Morning News, 1938) R.F. Wheatly architect; before 1938

There are no photographs in PWDRO of the panelling in the Lady Chapel, although the proposed design for the seating allows for ‘Future Panelling’ (CRO AD889/19). A newspaper article in 1938 reports that the chapel ‘has been completed by the panelling of the south and west walls, in commemoration of well-known Liskeard people’ (Western Morning News, 1938 p. 5) and states that the work was carried out by V. Pinwill. There are numerous dedications on the panelling, including ones to Elizabeth Jane Hooper (died 1938), Mary Elizabeth Moon (died 1936), Emily Beatrice Wainwright (died 1938) and Richard Henry Lee, five times Mayor of Liskeard (died 1937).


CRO AD889/19 Plans. Liskeard. Lady Chapel Seating.

CRO X272/44/1-8 Plans. Liskeard. Lady Chapel.

PWDRO 116/59 Photographs. Liskeard. Bench Ends.

PWDRO 244/2 Photograph Album. Various. Woodcarvings.

PWDRO 244/4 Photograph Album. Various. Woodcarvings.

PWDRO 244/5 Photograph Album. Various. Woodcarvings.

Western Morning News (1900) Wood-Carving at Plymouth. 6 June p. 4.

Western Morning News (1928) Memorial to Sons. Generous Gift to Liskeard Church. 24 April pp. 3 & 10.

Western Morning News (1933) Liskeard Church. Dedication of Screen and Carved Seats. 13 November p. 6.

Western Morning News (1938) Panels Dedicated. Memorials in Liskeard Parish Church. 1 August p. 5.