Harrington Church with Medieval Knight Effigy and Village History
A look at the history of the church and village of Harrington in Lincolnshire - complete with original pictures
Harrington is about the tiniest of possible hamlets a few miles west of Horncastle in-between Tennyson’s Somersby and Brinkhill.
Whatever village there was is now merely suggestive and takes the form of earthworks, what remains though gives it an unsurpassed ratio of interesting and historic buildings - the church, Harrington Hall and the Old Rectory !
The church is Greenstone and attractive though it is all relatively new as the result of a rebuild in 1854 by S.S. Teulon, architecturally very little survives from the medieval period. What has survived though is an impressive number of monuments including this fabulous Knight Effigy believed to be John de Harrington and dating to the early 1300s - a fabulous thing and I’m so pleased I was able to gain access to see it myself - and of course to photograph it and share it
There are other later monuments as well, notably to the Copledike family and the Amcotts’.
They are important families in the area and the earliest monument to a member of the Copledike family is made of brass and dated 1480, there are subsequent family monuments dating to the 16th and 17th century.
Harrington Hall was originally the seat of the Copledikes though rebuilt 1673 to 1681 by Vincent Amcotts. Originally Elizabethan and probably fortified there are earthworks in the grounds showing earlier medieval occupation. In 1991 the building suffered very badly in a fire - it has been been faithfully restored.
Possible fortified Elizabethan house built circa 1575, rebuilt in 1673 possibly by Vincent Amcotts and extended in the early 18th century. Two storey house plus attics built of red brick with a slate roof. The house was extensively damaged by fire in November 1991 and is now rebuilt.
There’s nothing any place in Lincolnshire likes much more than a possible Tennyson connection, ideally a definite one , but Harrington can claim such a connection, given its proximity to Somersby it’s perhaps not surprise.
Tennyson did actually write poetry to a Rosa Baring who was resident at the hall. More tenuously Canon Rawnsley, in his memories of the Tennysons, believes it probable that the hall’s walled garden was in Alfred’s mind and provided the inspiration for:
Birds in the Higg Hall garden
When twilight was fading,
Maud, Maud, Maud, Maud,
They were crying and calling
The area has, as mentioned, Medieval remains but also goes back further to the Bronze Age and the possibility of Roman settlement.
Further still with Neolithic artefacts having been found.
I’d be very keen to hear of any other artefacts known to be from the village or very immediate area especially an concrete evidence of Roman occupation.
As always here I’m keen to hear and preserve as much information as possible on this village so if you know anything at all related to the village history, buildings or inhabitants etc then please do leave a comment.