Related Churches within the area and contact information from external sources such as Crockfords can be found below.
St Mary the Virgin Clymping
The church was built by John of Clymping about 1230 who was Rector from about 1223. He was later Bishop of Chichester from 1253 until 1262 and was involved in the building of the Cathedral. For a village church it was large - the nave and chancel together being nearly 100 feet long.
The south transept was included in the design to connect the nave with the tower thus becoming an integral part of the building and a balance with the north transept. Stone was imported from quarries in Caen in Normandy. It is quite possible that the masons, like the stone, came from Normandy.
There are a number of memorial windows which are of local interest.
Two standards are laid up; one of the Royal Naval Association and one of the Royal Air Force Association. The wooden plaque is for HMS Peregrine, the Royal Naval Air Station at Ford during World War II. The churchyard contains a memorial to 28 service personnel and civilians who died in an air raid on 18 August 1940. There are also a number of war graves which are maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
The chancel is unusually large, thirty feet long and very impressive in its overall proportions. The lancet windows at the east have a particularly fine setting and were installed in 1921 in memory of men who died in World War I and also of the Reverend Henry Green, Vicar from 1888 to 1918. The richly coloured glass in the rose window depicting the Virgin and Child is modem, by John Baker of Canterbury. It was installed in 1959.
The pulpit dates from the 14th century but its carved design echoes the architecture of the church.
The north transept, or the Chapel of Jesus, named because of the paintings by Heywood Hardy depicting the life of Christ. This was a controversial series of biblical scenes portraying Christ walking in the Sussex countryside, surrounded by recognisable contemporary village dignitaries. These panels were painted to mark the 700th anniversary of Clymping Church.
Pews were first installed in the early 15th century; some pew ends in the front are original, dating from about 1420.
The font is late 14th century.
St Andrew's Ford
St Andrew-by-the-Ford is a tiny church of Saxon origin, at the end of a small gravel path, close to the bank of the River Arun and surrounded by a copse of trees. The church originally served a small community which was abandoned in 1608.
The church is a simple, two-cell structure, with a nave and chancel, and a porch added in 1637 in the Dutch style. The interior is dark - especially so since there is no electricity here (there is a small generator to provide limited lighting for the choir). It is dominated by the Norman chancel arch, which has mouldings with a simple X-shape decoration. The walls are pierced by small Norman windows, although the Chancel has a fine decorated window of about 1320. In the vestry are the remains of a Saxon arch, dated from around the turn of the 10th-11th centuries.
The walls show traces - although rather indistinct - of extensive wall paintings. Those above the chancel arch show the Doom painting (The Last Judgement), with the remains of devils (their feet, actually) forcing the damned into the mouth of a great red beast.
The church was restored in 1899 by Phillip Johnston, Diocesan architect, who has left a very detailed account of the work in the Sussex Archaeological Collection.
One hundred years later the church underwent major restoration work with the help of a substantial grant from English Heritage and charitable trusts along with private donations. The Diocesan architect Richard Meynell was awarded the King of Prussia gold medal for his outstanding work.
Seven styles of architecture are represented in this tiny Saxon church which has had a chequered history of fire, restoration and extension.
The fine roof has oak and chestnut timbers; one was dated 1363 during the 1999 restoration work.
The font bowl is made from a large square limestone block. It was thrown out during the works in 1865 and retrieved from a farmyard in 1899.
The bell chamber contains two bells; the treble bell is inscribed ‘+ROBERT RIDRE ME FECIT’; Robert Rider worked between 1351-86. The second bell was possibly made in the 17th century but has no markings.
Crockfords contact details
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