Work on the nave proceeded from east to west. The arches are flat pointed, indicating a beginning of the transition from Norman to early English. This 12th century work , probably 1180 to 1190. The nave is ‘singularly elegant and light, simple and refined’. There are seven bays (formerly eight) of large and spacious arcading with each pier and capital different, including some rich and elaborate carving.
Moving from east to west, the pairs are: quatrefoil, quatrefoil with subsidiary shafts, round quatrefoil with subsidiary keeled shafts, octagonal, and finally clusters of eight keeled shafts. The capitals include scallops, various water-leafs, and crockets. In the vestries on either side of the tower are buried arches and on one capital (in what is now the kitchen) ate traces of old fresco colouring.
Shows how the walls were heightened when the aisles were raised and new windows inserted throughout in the Perpendicular style. Over the second pier from the chancel arch are two openings where the rood loft formerly stood, approached apparently from the outside. The roodscreen was pulled down in 1844. There are traces of fresco work on the north side, suggesting dimly a man or an angel or, according to one source, a man in a red cloak holding his head in his hand.
The wooden roof was constructed in the mid-19th century. Above it is a fine oak medieval roof, which hopefully one day can be revealed in all its former glory.
The Former Screens
The ritual chancel, which until the 15th century seems to have extended only one bay into the nave, was then continued a further bay westwards and a new screen was erected across the nave and aisles in line with the second pair of pillars from the chancel arch. The two nave arches on either side also received screens, and the eastern parts of the aisles thus cut off, became chapels.
Doorways were cut through the side walls of the nave above the second pair of pillars to give access to the loft over the screen and the Great Rood, a crucifix with its attendant figures, which once adorned it. How this loft was reached is not certain, as there is no turret stair which might have given access to it, but there may have been a wooden stair in one or other of the aisles.
Nowadays, only the blocked doors in the nave walls remain, together with the marks of the wooden loft on the south side. This screen appears to have been moved one bay to the east at some later date, perhaps in the 17th century, for one in that position was taken down and destroyed in the 1843 restoration.
The Wall Painting
Over the easternmost arch on the north side of the remains of a wall painting which once covered all the upper walling. It consists of a bearded man dressed in a red cloak and holding his head in his hand. There are traces of angels and shepherds in the background, which is diapered with rosettes. From the style, it would appear to date from 1300. (34)
The font is of Purbeck or Northampton marble, and hexagonal in shape. Black conjectures that it is extremely early, possibly earlier than any portion of the existing church: Pevsner on the other hand, dates it as 13th century. The centre column is modern, the original having been lost when the font was disused and buried beneath the floor. It was restored in 1843/4 when an extensive restoration of the church took place, including perhaps the building of the roof and the addition of the ‘poppy’ head pews. (31)