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Dedicated to St Mary Magdalene, the parish church of Ecton lies just off the High Street, with the graves of centuries around it. When the Spanish Armada threatened invasion in the 16th century the tower was sufficiently prominent to be chosen as one of the five beacon towers of the region, and it is as true today as when Cole wrote in 1825, that 'various pleasing presentations of the lofty tower of the church offer themselves picturesquely to view through the aged trees which skirt this domain'. It is only perhaps unfortunate that the limestone ashlar work of the top stage, added in the 15th century, does not quite harmonise with the mellow ironstone of the rest of the building.
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