St. Ives, Huntingdonshire

All Saints' Church, St. Ives, Huntingdonshire

St. Ives Church sits sentinel over the beautiful Great Ouse at one end of Huntingdonshire’s nicest town. The Abbot of Ramsey Abbey, Adnothus, built a church here in 970 AD and dedicated to All Saints. This would have been a wooden structure.

It is mentioned in the Domesday Book but it seems that the stone building did not arrive until around 1150 and it was already of the length that today’s church stands at. In the 13th Century a clerestory was added along with a south aisle. Around 1470 a massive rebuild was undertaken, the chancel walls were heightened, new windows were added and the tower with its graceful spire was constructed. By and large the church which now stands looks much like it did in 1470.

Oddly enough the church is not dedicated to St. Ivo – for whom the town is named.

The spire has had its share of problems over the years. It was blown down in the “Great Gale” of 1741 and rebuilt by 1748. Another rebuild followed in 1879 but this would be short-lived. In 1918 an aeroplane crashed into the spire knocking it down onto and through the church roof. Repair work was completed in 1924 and since then little has changed either at All Saints’ Church or, some might say, in St. Ives as a whole.

Photo - Andrew J. Müller

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