Moccas is one of those churches where time seems to have stood still. Set in the most glorious Herefordshire countryside close to the manor of Moccas Park, on a summer evening this was an idyllic visit.
The church was built in about 1130. There had been a Moccas Abbey that was destroyed by the invading Saxons in about AD600. Moccas is an original Norman 3-celled apsidal church whose ground plan has not changed in nearly 1000 years.
Moccas is believed to have been built by the same masons as the wonderful Kilpeck Church, also a 3-celled apsidal church, but did not enjoy the rich funding provided by Hugh de Kilpeck for the church that bears his name. The contrast between the humble plainness of Moccas and the Romanesque fantasy that is Kilpeck could not be greater.
The south door has a tympanum but its design of human figures and beasts around a Tree of Life has been all but obliterated by weathering. The north door’s tympanum had a scrolled ornament and a beast but I defy anyone to distinguish it now. On both doors the carvings on the capitals are faint but still visible. There are chevron mouldings over the doors.
Inside, there is little decoration. The chancel arch is notably plain, but has some lozenge chevron that mimics that on the apse ribs at Kilpeck.