The medieval churches of Northamptonshire

The medieval churches of Northamptonshire

This long-standing project builds on recording and analysis of the 300 medieval parochial churches and chapels in the post-1974 county of Northampton (approximating to the Archdeaconry of Northampton) conducted by the former Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. It was the first detailed county-wide recording exercise in such detail, and aimed to provide an understanding of the evolution of church buildings from their origins to the sixteenth-century reformation.  The churches of Northamptonshire are particularly suited to this exercise because they evolved piecemeal throughout the middle ages (rather than being replaced as in wealthier areas such as East Anglia, or never having been substantially altered, as in poorer areas such as the Sussex Downs), so that patterns of development can be determined.  A second part of the work involves seeking to understand the relationship between the evolving forms of church buildings, the institutional development of the local Church, and changing beliefs, devotional and liturgical practices throughout the middle ages.