Ancient Monuments

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Old St Helen's Church, Ore

A Scheduled Monument in St Helens, East Sussex

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Latitude: 50.8797 / 50°52'46"N

Longitude: 0.5865 / 0°35'11"E

OS Eastings: 582049.76182

OS Northings: 112095.354365

OS Grid: TQ820120

Mapcode National: GBR PWY.R38

Mapcode Global: FRA D63S.49M

Entry Name: Old St Helen's Church, Ore

Scheduled Date: 2 June 1992

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1011845

English Heritage Legacy ID: 20002

County: East Sussex

Electoral Ward/Division: St Helens

Built-Up Area: Hastings

Traditional County: Sussex

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): East Sussex

Church of England Parish: Ore St Helen

Church of England Diocese: Chichester


The monument includes a church, listed Grade II, which comprises the remains
of an 11th century nave, 12th century tower and 13th century chancel, in
addition to a surrounding churchyard and an area adjacent to a contemporary
manor house, scheduled separately, all situated on a ridge 3.5km north of
Hastings. The church was partly dismantled c.1870 to provide building
materials for the new church. The monument is aligned on an east-west axis
and has maximum dimensions of 23m long by 14.5m wide; the width includes the
remains of the south aisle and north porch while the length includes the ruins
of the nave, chancel and tower. The north wall survives to a height of 3.5m
and incorporates a small Saxo-Norman window over an infilled doorway and two
later Gothic 3-light windows. Much of the east wall remains to a height of
6.5m and has a large 3-light Gothic window. The tower is still standing to
its full height. Its east wall was the original west wall of the church and
has two small infilled circular windows with an infilled Romanesque window
arch between them. The surrounding churchyard was in continual use until the
church was abandoned c.1870 and contains over 90 gravestones and monuments
dating from the 17th century to the late 1850s. The stone wall, which marks
the boundary of the monument to the north, the fence which marks the boundary
to the east and the track to the west are not included in the scheduling.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Parish churches are buildings, usually of roughly rectangular outline,
containing a range of furnishings and fittings appropriate to their use for
Christian worship. They occur in all parts of England but, because of their
congregational function, their overall distribution is in broad accord with
the areas of higher population density. Thus agriculturally rich and well
populated areas in the 10th-13th centuries tend to contain the highest number
of churches.
Old St Helen's church is important for its architectural features,
incorporating both Saxon and Norman building techniques, and its
archaeological potential. Owing to its abandonment in the 19th century,
buried deposits within the church have suffered little or no subsequent
disturbance. The churchyard, in continuous use within its original boundary
until c.1870 but then abandoned, contains many surviving 17th-19th century
gravestones. A close association exists between the church and Ore Manor
House which stood c.15m to the west of the tower.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Bullock, F W B, A History of the Parish Church of St Helen's, Ore, (1951)
Clements, J, Old St Helen's (Ore) Church, A First report, (1988)
Morris, R, HBMC Monument Class Description - Parish Churches, (1990)

Source: Historic England

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