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Church of St Peter and St Paul, Isle of Wight

At Mottistone village

Church of St Peter and St Paul Monttistone by Barbara Ballard A church has stood on the site of the church of St Peter and St Paul since the 12th century. It was built by Brian de Insula, owner of Mottistone manor, for his tenants. The Cheke family inherited the estate in 1300. Descendants Robert and David Cheke enlarged the church in the 15th century. From 1621 until 1861 the estate was owned by two other families. The Seely family bought the estate in 1861.

In the church part of the font and bases of central pier on north side are from the 12th century. The nave and its arcaded aisles and a chantry chapel were rebuilt by the Chekes in the 15th century. They added the chancel and west end tower. The east window has the family shield and Tudor rose. Remains of two holy water stoops are built into the south porch and the lych gate.

On the chancel beam is carved the date 1628, thought to note the re-roofing of the area. The date 1664 can be seen cut into a supporting frame for the single tower bells. A carved wooden pulpit also dates from this time. The organ, dating from 1770, was placed in the church in 1957.

The church was in need of restoration by the 1800s. The window tracery, nave arches and walls were redone. The broach spire was removed and a parapet and spire added to the towers. Dating form this time are a communion rails, candelabra, and pews. Cedar boards from a shipwreck were used to line the chancel roof.

The parclose screen and its furnishings of the Cheke chapel (NE corner) were designed by John, architect son of General Jack Seely, 1st Lord Mottistone, and erected in 1948 in memory of his father. The stained glass of the two east windows dates from 1948.

The table tomb beside the altar is attributed to Jane Freake, (d. 1674), wife of Sir Robert Dillington, who bought the estate in 1621.

In the churchyard the shaft of a large cross is part of a 15th century pier. Services are held in the church on various Sundays throughout the year.

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