Church Micro 1682...Marston Moreteyne
This cache is a 35mm film pot. It only contains a log. Please bring your own pen / pencil. Please note that the final cache is located outside the churchyard and is NOT accessible from inside the churchyard. Parking is available near the churchyard. Please avoid school start and finish times as the parking is adjacent to the lower school.
The church of St Mary's St Mary's Church stands at the heart of the small Bedfordshire village of Marston Moreteyne, within the area known as Marston Vale. The ancient church of St. Mary's Marston Moreteyne, has watched over the changing face of the Vale since the mid-fifteenth century. Evidence exists that there was probably an earlier church on the site, which may have been established in Anglo Saxon times. Worship in this historic place has continued unbroken for virtually a thousand years.
The unusual detached tower of the church, with it's thick walls at the base, suggest that this was once a watchtower, or a place of refuge in times of strife. There is a theory that it may have been used to protect villagers from the pillage of the Vikings, whose long ships may have sailed as far as Bedford on the River Ouse. We will probably never the know the truth of this .. but it makes for a good story.
St. Mary the Virgin Church, contains 'treasures' from the 15th Century, notably the 'Doom' painting which can be seen above the Chancel Arch. This was known to have existed, even though it remained covered until the 1960's, when a team from the Victoria and Albert Museum revealed what had been concealed for centuries. A 'Doom' painting shows the Last Judgement and the separation of the souls, when Christ returns. Marston's 'Doom', is arguably the best in the County (where very few examples exist) and among the finest in the Country from the point of view of their preservation.
Also from Medieval times, once can see parts of a painted 'Rood Screen' and fragments of old glass. Other interesting features are the Font and the carved roof with it's angels, one of which is mysteriously missing. There are niches where statues of Saints once stood and unusual 'squints' cut through the Chancel from the Reynes Chapel through which, it is believed, priests watched the progress of the services in order to be 'on cue' for entry. An alternative suggestion for these openings was for lepers or other 'undesirables' to stand to watch the service without causing offence.
To find the location of the final cache, you used to need to visit the lychgate and find out the year when the lychgate was constructed. Sadly the plaque has disappeared so new clues are needed.
Now it is mostly about pipes! The southern side of the church has a filled in porch. On the filled in face there are E pipes and F bricks. On the north side of the church tower, between the lowest windows and the ground are G pipes. Now look up, the tower has drainage guttering sticking out on H sides (I bet that looks impressive in heavy rain!)
The final cache can be found at:
North 52° 03.(E-G)GF West 000° 32.(E+2)(H-G)(F+G)
If anybody would like to expand to this series please do, I would just ask that you could let Sadexploration know first so he can keep track of the Church numbers and names to avoid duplication.
To view the church micro stats page, please click here
While in Marston Moreteyne, you may wish to visit the Forest Centre - home to several of aliandtone's excellent caches.