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Hulcote and Salford, Bedfordshire

St.Nicholas' church is a very unusual little creation; its structure dates in its entirety from about 1590 and a large part of the chancel is filled with a large, painted monument to its builder Richard Chernocke (his initials "RC" are picked out in nailheads on the door) who died in 1615.

 

An earlier church existed here as is shown by the list of rectors below and it was described in an inventory of 1552 "churche and steple coveryd with ledd and the chauncell and porch tyled".

 

Today's church is not quite how Chernocke built it, additional fittings being brought in during the 17th century and alterations having been made in the 19th century, for example between 1836 and 1839 and the roof was repaired in 1842.

 

Until 1867 the church sported a low spire but that was removed in this year when the tower was re-roofed and pinnacles heightened. Inside a lot of the early fittings have been removed including the 17th century west gallery.

 

It was Victorian drawing of the Chernocke Memorial suggested that the church be closed in 1875 and the archdeacon noted in 1879 that "the church is now practically shut up, with knowledge and consent of the Bishop but not in legal form". By 1899 the church was disused except during burials. The church was reopened in 1953 after re-roofing with tiles instead of lead and further repairs took place in 1971.

 

Hulcote was united with Salford in 1750. From 1939 to 1953 Hulcote with Salford shared an incumbent with Ridgmont and since 1961 Hulcote with Salford has shared an incumbent with Cranfield, though the two parishes maintain separate parochial church councils, churchwardens and services.

St. Nicholas Church Hulcote

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