St. Brelade's Church

Jersey, United Kingdom

The date of the present St. Brelade's is unknown, but it is mentioned in deeds of patronage. In AD 1035, Robert of Normandy confirmed the patronage of the church to the monastery of Montivilliers, which shows that the church was here before 1035. The chancel is the oldest part of the building. The original building extended some six feet into the nave. It was then only a small monastic chapel. Early in the 12th century St. Brelade's became a parish church and in the 14th–15th centuries, the roof was raised some two-and-a-half feet higher to a Gothic pitch. The roof of the Fishermen's Chapel was raised at the same time.

The church of the 12th century was cruciform in structure, consisting of a chancel, a nave (built in two periods) and two transepts—the latter forming the two arms. At a later date, perhaps a century later, the chancel aisle was built, and after that the nave aisle. The date of the tower is uncertain. It is, however, older than the chancel.

The font disappeared during the Reformation and was found on the slopes near the church, hidden in bracken and gorse, in 1840 and restored to the church. An ornate wooden cover for the font was provided in memory of H. G. Shepard, long-time warden at the church. A processional cross dating from the 13th century is to be seen in the Lady Chapel; this was found buried in the church. The stained glass is the work of Henry Thomas Bosdet and replaced plain glass windows dating from the Reformation iconoclasm.

Before the restoration of Balleine in the 1890s, the whole of the interior stone work was covered in plaster which was whitewashed; the plaster was removed to show the granite, and the whole re-pointed with cement. Balleine's restoration also saw Art Nouveau woodwork in the choir stalls and pulpit and modern paving in the chancel; it is made of five different types of Jersey granite and represents the waves breaking on the sea-shore.

The legend has the site of the church being placed in the centre of St Brelade's Bay and moved by night by fairy folk from their sacred site to where it now stands, until the workmen got the message and left it where it now stands.

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Founded: 11th century
Category: Religious sites in United Kingdom

Rating

4.3/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Sonja Latimer (6 months ago)
Lovely building and surrounding, beach view. Traditional Sunday worship, warm welcome and warm and cosy church with plenty of information about it's history.
Paul Clarke (11 months ago)
Nice church , lovely setting and resting place of Blackburn Rovers No 1 Fan Jack Walker
Alison Moar (11 months ago)
This is a beautiful church, which obviously has a lot of history. It would have been nice to be able to learn more about it, as information on it was unfortunately scarce from what I could see on our visit to the church. It is still worth a visit, though, as the stained glass is stunning! Also go and look in the little fisherman's chapel for some rare ceiling paintings.
Laura Leach (11 months ago)
Beautiful church and fishermans Chapel and the graveyard is very well looked after. Well worth a visit.
NOT IMPORTANT (12 months ago)
Beautifull church with beautiful breathtaking views and only a walk away from the beach
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