St Giles, Balderton, Nottinghamshire

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Feature Sets (2)


The church consists of chancel, nave, N and S aisles, N and S porches and W tower with spire. The simple 12thc. church was enlarged in the 13thc. with a new chancel whilst the aisles were added in the 14thc. The 14thc. doorway is by the same hand as that at Hawton. The rood screen dates from about 1475. The church was restored in the 19thc. when the clerestory was removed. The Romanesque features are the N and S porch doorways.


Balderton belonged to the sokeland of Newark in the land of the Bishop of Lincoln in 1086. No church or priest was recorded.


Exterior Features


N porch entrance

Round headed, of three orders and a label.

Within the porch the door to the church is also of the same period, round headed and plain (the door itself is 14thc. carved with tracery and an inscription).

h. of capitals (excl. necking and impost) 0.18 m
h. of opening 2.40 m
w. of capitals (excl. necking and impost) 0.22 m
w. of opening 1.18 m
First order

A continuous plain roll moulding rising from a plain base. The roll moulding is decorated with 29 beakheads, one per voussoir. On the E side of the doorway the first seven beakheads are very weathered, as are those on the W side. The remaining heads are similar slender bird heads with slight variations.

Second order

The bases, which are the same on E and W sides, have a double torus, the first larger with a foliate spur, the second with a groove carved round its middle. The en-delit nook-shafts are decorated, the E shaft with chevron, the W with double cable, with alternate bands of broad rolls and nailhead. Both capitals are trefoil scallops with recessed shields, neckings are plain and imposts have hollow chamfers with a horizontal reed at the bottom of the face. The arch is carved with triple-stepped centripetal chevron.

Third order

The bases, which are the same on E and W sides, have a double torus, the first larger with a foliate spur, the second with a groove carved round its middle. The en-delit nook-shafts are carved with a continuous chevron moulding rising to a plain necking roll and a trefoil scallop capital. The impost block is as the second order. The archivolt has single-roll centripetal chevron. The double-chamfered label consists of a triple row of alternating billet moulding, with a rosette on each of the badly weathered label stops.

S doorway

Re-set under porch. Round-headed and consisting of two orders with label.

h. of capitals (excl. necking and impost block) 0.17 m
h. of opening 2.50 m
w. of capitals (excl. necking and impost block) 0.21 m
w. of opening 1.50 m
First order

A continuous order of single lateral centripetal chevrons.

Second order

Plain bases with single torus at the base, much weathered. The plain en-delit nook-shafts rise to scalloped capitals with plain neckings and quirked hollow chamfered impost blocks. The archivolt, which, unlike the N doorway, is without soffit roll, has a double lateral centripetal chevron.

The label is decorated with two bands of roll billet framing a continuous arcade of plain round-headed cusping. The label stops are decorated with grotesque beast heads with bulging eyes.

Exterior Decoration


Relief of a saint in niche, N porch gable

The niche is round-headed, of one order. Plain base and en-delit nook-shaft with double scallop capitals. The archivolt has an angle roll moulding. There is a lintel decorated with roll billet and small blank round-headed arches. Within the niche is a badly eroded, draped, haloed standing figure, the face and right hand missing, the left hand carved in relief against the body of the figure. Behind the figure is a round headed arch carved in relief.


The N and S porch doorways date from about 1140, and were re-set following the building of the aisles. The niche above the N porch appears much later and could well be 19thc. The identity of the figure is uncertain though it could represent St Giles, in the robes of an abbot, to whom the church is dedicated. Pevsner dates the figure to the 12thc.


  • A. M. Y. Baylay, Balderton Church. Transactions of the Thoroton Society5 - 8.
  • J. C. Cox, County Churches: Nottinghamshire. London, 1912, 28 - 29.
  • N. Pevsner and E. Williamson, The Buildings of England: Nottinghamshire, 2nd ed., London, 1979. Reprinted (with corrections) 1997, 64-65.
General view.


Site Location
National Grid Reference
SK 822 521 
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales): Nottinghamshire
now: Nottinghamshire
medieval: York
now: Southwell and Nottingham
now: St Giles
medieval: St Giles
Type of building/monument
Parish church  
Report authors
Simon Kirsop