For a period of 3 years during my teens - many more years ago than I care to admit - I lived in Curdworth and yet never ventured into the church. So much greater the effect on me, then, when I discovered that it had a Norman core and an extraordinary font!
Curdworth Church, 8 miles east of Birmingham, now sits as an oasis amongst a sea of “des res” modern housing. It has the sandstone masonry so typical of this area.
The original Norman building dates from the mid-c12 and was extended to the west in 1460 by Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick to include the tower. There were originally two nave doorways on the northern side but both were filled in during the c13 although they are still clearly visible. A number of the windows have been replaced over the years but Curdworth retains its Norman character. There is a Norman chancel arch. Windows are deeply splayed and some retain original wall painting.
The font, however, is its principal glory and is seen by some as evidence of a previous Saxon church. The British History website suggests that it is contemporary with the church itself - that is, of the Norman period so perhaps a Saxon provenance owes something to wishful thinking, As is so often the way with fonts, this one was “rediscovered” during restoration work in 1895, on this occasion from beneath the church Victorian restoration strikes fear into the heart of the student of mediaeval churches, but there is little to complain of in Curdworth.