Wednesday 1st May 2024 – Nicholas Henderson: How to Read an English Country Church: Pre-Christian to the Anglo-Saxon

Wednesday 1st May 2024

How to read an English Country Church: Pre-Christian to the Anglo-Saxon

Nicholas Henderson

Nicholas Henderson brought to life the history of an English country church, entertaining us with fabulous images and facts.  His lecture  “How to read an English Country Church: pre-Christian to the Anglo-Saxon” certainly was not dry and boring and one of 3 lectures on this subject.  He interwove the history of early England and told us stories of the symbolism on churches. We learnt about fertility symbols and how the yew tree  in the churchyard was before the building of the church and how they grew in groves and known to be everlasting. He told us about the ‘Greenman’ decorating early churches up and down the country and our new King Charles who designed a green man at the bottom of his Coronation invitation.  The oldest part of these early churches is the tower and entrance arch. We learnt about Danelaw c878 and he finished his talk with a flourish introducing King Canute (1016 – 1035). 

Escomb Saxon

A graduate of Selwyn College, Cambridge, Nicholas trained for the Anglican ministry at Ripon Hall, Oxford. He was formerly Bishop-elect for the Diocese of Lake Malawi in Central Africa (2005-2009) and undertook his doctorate on Lay Anglican Ecclesiology with the University of Wales, Lampeter. He lectures regularly and currently works as a parish priest in West London.