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over the three-light Decorated window in the north aisle is also in a decaying state, and had better be replaced in the same way.
It will probably be wise in the case of the south aisle. to build a substantial buttress in line with the east wall southwards. This buttress should be designed with a view of giving the maximum of strength, and at the same time making it clear that it is the work of this century.
There is no doubt whatever, that both the east and south walls can be considerably strengthened from the inside by cutting out defective work and building in layers of hard well-bonded material.
3. Tower. The most important and serious work to the whole church centres in the tower. This has been very seriously, but not irreparably, damaged by the ringing of improperly hung bells, and is not only cracked from top to bottom on its three free sides, but a bulge has begun to show itself at the south-west
Until the work is taken in hand the bells ought not on any account to be rung, but only chimed.
In repairing the tower, the first thing to do will be to lower the bells and to take the bell cage to pieces, with a view of properly reframing it after the walls have been repaired.
The south-west angle of the tower should be carefully shored up to avoid any risk of movement in this direction, and possibly other shoring may be found to be
Where the cracks occur the core of the wall will require carefully cutting out in order that long-bonding stones may be built in. Possibly it will be found more convenient to build in courses of tiles, properly lapped and set in cement; but the details of this method of treatment must depend upon what is found necessary during the progress of the work. The object aimed at is to introduce horizontal ties going far enough across the cracks as well as through nearly the whole thickness of the wall to the outer facing, at 4 or 5 feet intervals in height. The work of putting in these bonders would begin at the bottom, and after the hole is cut, and before. the bonders are put in, the rubble work below would be
thoroughly grouted and brought up to an even surface to receive the bonding course.
If this work is efficiently carried out, under proper supervision, the tower will be rendered perfectly secure, without any interference with its outward aspect.
It does not appear that failure of foundations is in any way the cause of the mischief which is found to exist in the tower. It might, however, be wise to uncover them so as to see whether any additional strengthening can with advantage be given.
After the masonry of the tower is made secure, the different floors should be repaired in oak, and the bellcage properly reframed and re-erected in such a way that the upper sill of the cage is at least two inches clear of the walls all round. If this is properly done, the bells may be rehung and rung with safety, but it would be most undesirable to increase the number of the bells, for no risk should be run where such an unusually interesting tower is concerned. The window openings that are at present roughly blocked with rubble may be opened out and glazed, and the belfry windows filled with proper louvres.
4. Paving. There is no excuse for abandoning the present pavement. It is even doubtful whether it need be touched at all; but if anything be done, 2 or 3 yards should be taken up at a time, the ground beneath excavated for a depth of 8 inches, and the pavement carefully relaid as it was before on a 6-inch bed of cement concrete bedded on 2 inches of dry rubbish or broken stone. The gravestones should not on any account be displaced.
5. Plastering of Walls. Since it was the invariable practice of the old builders to plaster (and whitewash) their walls, great care should be taken to preserve all old wall plaster. The chancel walls have unfortunately been stripped and replastered, and now exhibit an example of the badness of modern plastering. This being so, it is still more important to preserve as far as possible all the plastering that now exists elsewhere in the church.
6. Glazing. The value of old clear glass in churches and secular buildings is often overlooked, and nothing can be worse than the modern tinted and so-called "cathedral" glass.
In this church there is good old clear glass in most of the windows, every pane of which should be carefully preserved. Where the lead work is defective it should be repaired by a competent glazier, in the church, so as to avoid taking the old glass away.
7. Seats. So many of the old seats as remain in place should be left exactly as they are, and nothing but necessary repairs done to them. The later enclosures that have been put up near the pulpit, on each side of the nave, should be carefully taken to pieces, and the old portions of the old pews out of which they are made should be put together again as far as possible, new oak being added where necessary, and the old series of pews again completed.
The low gallery under the tower should certainly be retained unaltered.
8. Warming. With regard to warming and ventilating the church, there can be no doubt that an underground heating chamber is most undesirable and unjustifiable, inasmuch as risk of damage to the foundations ought not to be run. A long experience has shown
that ancient churches cannot be warmed and aired better and in a less unsightly way than by the use of a Gurney stove. It avoids the unsightliness of iron gratings in the floor, and it is cheaper and more effective than any underground system.
9. Cleaning. The walls and ceilings of the church inside should be thoroughly washed down, and considering the want of light in the building there can be no doubt whatever that it would be well to again whiten both walls and ceilings.
10. Vestry. To build a vestry on to any part of this valuable little church would be an unpardonable offence. The population of the parish is so small that space for vestry purposes within the existing building can easily be afforded. Small vestries added outside are objectionable for the practical reason that they are almost certain to be damp, whereas when formed by screening off part of the church, they are warmed and aired with the church. Moreover, the curtains used for screening off such a vestry afford a useful opportunity for introducing pleasant colour.
11. Gutters and Spoutings. All the down spouts
and gutters require careful attention and a considerable amount of renewal. The interesting old leaden shoots to the aisle roofs ought to be carefully repaired and retained.
W. H. ST. JOHN HOPE.
March 16th, 1897.
THE Continuation of the papers by Mr. John L. Myres, M.A., F.S.A., on "The Church Plate of Buckinghamshire," has been unavoidably postponed. An important contribution to this subject from Mr. Myres, however, is in manuscript, and will be printed in the next year's number of THE RECORDS, being No. 1, Vol. VIII., of the Society's publication.
THE CHURCH BELLS OF BUCKINGHAMSHIRE.
By ALFRED HENEAGE COCKS, M.A. (Jarrold & Sons).
THIS work, by Mr. Cocks, one of our Honorary Secretaries, has been published during the present year. It is in every way the most important archæological book relating to the county which has issued from the press since Lipscomb's History. A full review of the volume, by Mr. E. J. Payne, is to appear in next year's number of THE RECORDS.-ED.
THE best spelling of the name is probably that adopted by Mr. Gough, who, in the map of Bucks engraved in his splendid edition of Camden (1806), gives it as "Whitcliffe Cross." One is tempted to regard the current spelling as an old compositor's error, "Whiteleaf" having been carelessly substituted for "Whitcleaf." More probably it has followed a change in pronunciation; the guttural explodent, intervening between two palatals, has been naturally dropped. An illustrated folio of the last century, full of interesting information, entitled "The Modern Universal British Traveller," has the spelling "Whitecleaf." "Cliff" often occurs as an element in place-names; in Bucks we have Radcliff and Clifton (Reynes), both on the Ouse; also Clifden in Bucks (properly"Clifton," but always locally pronounced "Clivden")