St Andrew’s Church, Buckland Monachorum

Upcoming Events

7:30 pm PCC meet Online
PCC meet Online
Jan 18 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
PCC meet Online @ Buckland Monachorum | England | United Kingdom
Regular bi-monthly meeting of the Parochial Church Council, for the moment online – would members please let Helen know if unable to attend.
8:00 am Wednesday Morning Prayer
Wednesday Morning Prayer
Jan 20 @ 8:00 am – 8:30 am
Wednesday Morning Prayer
A warm welcome to all who would like to join us on Zoom – please ask our Secretary for details.
8:00 am Friday Morning Prayer (BCP) via ...
Friday Morning Prayer (BCP) via ...
Jan 22 @ 8:00 am – 8:30 am
Friday Morning Prayer (BCP) via Zoom
Everyone is welcome to join our Friday Morning Worship (BCP), led by Andy Farmer, via Zoom.
9:00 am Family Focus
Family Focus
Jan 24 @ 9:00 am – 10:00 am
Family Focus
This is a service especially for our young people, from Tom, our Youth & Children’s worker – please see the Resources that go with it!
9:00 am Online Sunday Service
Online Sunday Service
Jan 24 @ 9:00 am – 10:00 am
Online Sunday Service
Please join us by logging into our church website under Services and Messages, or going onto our YouTube Channel…


St. Andrew’s Church is extremely attractive and remains in good condition, although five hundred years of Devon weather and centuries of treading feet have certainly left their mark! As a result, regular, painstaking maintenance is required to preserve the beauty and tranquillity of the church

The current building, which dates from circa1490, was constructed in the Perpendicular style and essentially consists of a chancel, nave and two transepts.


The Chancel and Nave

The chancel is entered through a remarkably lopsided arch, yet the reason for this anomaly remains unclear. Beyond the choir stalls lies the altar and above this a beautiful mosaic depicting St Andrew. Our patron saint also features in the stained glass windows on this side of the church.

The high roof of the nave is adorned with sixteen finely carved angel figures, playing a variety of musical instruments to accompany the congregation seated below. On the floor of the nave and aisles lies a highly admired display of Victorian encaustic tiles, produced by in-laying coloured clays prior to firing.


The Aisles and Chapels

On both sides of the nave lie five grand arches, leading into the aisles, each of which has a chapel at its eastern extreme.

The Drake Chapel is the most noteworthy and lies on the south side of the nave. This is named after the family whose most illustrious son; the Elizabethan sea-farer Sir Francis Drake, bought nearby Buckland Abbey in 1581. He may have been a visitor to the church and one pew still bears his carved coat of arms. His nephew, Francis, was baptised and married at St Andrew’s.

Behind the chapel altar is a large, elaborate and some would say ostentatious monument by John Bacon. This is recognised as an outstanding example of the eighteenth century artist’s craftsmanship. Other monuments by Bacon may be viewed at Westminster Abbey and St Paul’s Cathedral.

The northern chapel is known as the Crapstone or Crymes Chapel and now houses the organ. This was designed by Dr L G Hayne who also wrote the popular hymn tune ‘Buckland.’ His brother was the vicar of St Andrew’s in 1849 when the organ was first installed. It has undergone several renovations over the years but its swelling melodies still sound wonderful!


A Tale Of Two Fonts

In the north west corner of the church lies an ancient font, crudely carved from a single block of Roborough granite from nearby Roborough Down. It is believed to date from Saxon times and was probably used from about 900AD. When the church was rebuilt in 1490, this primitive asymmetric baptismal trough was considered too old fashioned to be used in such a modern building. It was buried under the church, where it remained hidden for many centuries, before being rediscovered in 1857.

Close to the church entrance, beside a beautifully carved wooden screen, lies the ‘new’ font. This octagonal structure dates from 1490 and is still in use today. Traces of original colouring may still be seen, together with two carved faces, their tongues out to ward off evil spirits.


The Tower

This slender, elegant structure is seventy feet high and surmounted by a quartet of impressive pinnacles. It originally housed four bells, but when two more were added in 1723 the tower was seriously weakened and required urgent repair.

In 1947 the bells were re-cast and re-hung, two trebles being added to make a ring of eight. A dedicated team of ringers ensures that their distinctive sound continues to peal out over the village and campanology competitions are sometimes held at Buckland.


Out and About

The churchyard is a place of great beauty and tranquillity, where blossom falls over ancient gravestones and bird-song is plentiful.

One prominent feature is a towering cross, erected to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee in 1897. This sits above a stepped plinth which is very much older and once formed part of the Preaching Cross that stood on the village green.


Visit Us…

St Andrew’s Church is open during daylight hours and visitors are always welcome. It is an ideal place to sit, think, pray or simply to imagine the countless generations who have worshipped God in this ancient place.