St Maddern

Madron Screen
Restored wainscoting on the Chancel Screen at Madron

Reredos and Altar – Newspaper article (West Briton, 1897) E.H. Sedding architect; 1897

The only source for this work is a short announcement in the West Briton newspaper, stating that a ‘new carved oak reredos and altar, designed by Mr. Sedding, of Plymouth, have been placed in the south aisle of Madron Parish Church, being the gift of the late General Tremenheere. The work was executed by Messrs [sic] R. Pinwill & Co.’ (Ibid. p. 5). The altar features a large Celtic cross in the centre, but there is now no reredos in the south aisle chapel.

Chancel Screen Restoration – Photographs (PWDRO 244/5); 1903-05

There are four photographs in PWDRO of the screen at Madron, one showing the full width and the other three the north, chancel and south sections, respectively. A newspaper article about its dedication provides the information that the screen was restored by ‘Messrs [sic] Rashleigh, Pinwell [sic] & Co.’ from designs by Edmund H. Sedding (Cornishman, 1903). This was an enormous and expensive piece of work. The screen is about 53 feet wide and divided into 15 bays. Fifteenth-century carved panels were re-used to form the base, but the rest of the screen, with vaulting and carved cornice, was reproduced in darkened oak in medieval design. It seems, however, that not all of the decorative work was complete at the time of dedication. In February 1905 ‘several lengths of very fine cresting and moulding for the cornice of Madron church screen’ were exhibited in Plymouth (Western Morning News, 1905 p. 8) and presumably installed soon afterwards. The work was the gift of Nora Bolitho of Laregan in memory of her parents, William (died 1895) and Mary Hichens (died 1902) of Polwithen.

Sources

Cornishman (1903) St. Madron Church. The Chancel Screen Restored. 8 October p. 5.

PWDRO 244/5 Photograph Album. Various. Woodcarvings.

West Briton (1897) Local Intelligence. Penzance. 24 June p. 5.

Western Morning News (1905) Exhibition of Wood-Carving in Plymouth. 15 February p. 8.