East Sussex Church Monuments - 1530 to 1830 - Archive of Photographs
by Professor Nigel Llewellyn

(303) WIVELSFIELD, St. Peter and St. John the Baptist

The North aisle is of 1869, otherwise mostly late 13th century; nave lengthened later - Nairn & Pevsner (639-40); in 1724 the condition of the church was fine (Ford 157); the monuments were all relocated from the chantry chapel in the South aisle to the (West) bell-tower after church restorations of 1868 and refer to five generations of the More/Richbell family, the sequence starting with Thomas Elyot (cited in 303E), whose daughter Margaret (303E and G) married Thomas More (303B and G); the issue of Thomas More's son, Elyot More, is commemorated in 303E,F,G and I and of his daughter, Abigail Richbell, in 303A, C,D and H; for an account of the family home at Morehouse see VCH (VII 122) and Attree (SAC 36 44-45), with pedigree of More (p.57) and see Godfrey & Salzman (Pl. 187) for a view of 1787 from the South; the parish had 70 families in 1724; population of 442 in 1801; one Frances More, spinster, by her will of 1723, proved 1727, supported the local charity school (Caffyn 270).

303A Floor slab for Elyott RICHBELL, d. 1716

-  Bell-tower floor, against South wall.

-  100(W) x 45(L)~Worn; cracked to right.

-  M.I. cut into the surface of a black slab, now reduced in size; head to South.

303B Mural monument for Thomas MORE, d. 1665?

-  Bell-tower, South wall, beneath window.

-  106(W) x 82(H)~Worn but sound.

-  M.I. (6 lines, engraved) on lower part of oval plaque; local cretaceous(?) freestone; simple moulded rim; above, in relief, an escutcheon.

303C Ledger for John RICHBELL, d. 1712

-  Bell-tower floor, against South wall, West of 303A.

-  146(W) x 66(H)~Very worn.

-  M.I. on a freestone slab; head to South.

303D Ledger for Frances RICHBELL, d. 1694/5

-  Bell-tower floor, against West wall, towards South-West corner.

-  82(W) x 150(L)~Very worn; sound.

-  M.I. (5 lines, engraved) on a freestone slab; head to the West; below, an indent [32(W) x 40] for a lost brass.

303E Ledger for Margaret MORE, d. 1680 and descendants

-  Bell-tower floor, against West wall, to North of 303D, partly obscured by furnishings.

-  75(W) x 175(L)~Sound; worn.

-  M.I. (engraved) fills 75% of a black slab; head to West; final 9 lines added after 1741.

-  Margaret More, d. 1680, aet 77, daughter and heir of Thomas Elyott, armiger, of Roygate [Reigate?], Surrey; and wife of Thomas More, armiger, of Wivelsfield; also Thomas Middelton, of Morehouse, d. Sep 1741, aet 34; grandson of Elyott More; and son of John Middelton, of Chailey, and Elyott his wife.

303F Ledger for Elizabeth MORE, d. 1718

-  Bell-tower floor, against West wall, North-West corner, partly obscured.

-  69(W) x 105(L)~Worn; sound.

-  M.I. (8 lines, engraved) on a black slab; head to East; final line reversed.

303G Mural monument for Elyott MORE, d. 1703

-  Bell-tower, West wall, below head height, lower left.

-  83(W) x 83(H)~Generally fine; local losses (& repairs) on right and lower edges.

-  Above, arms; M.I. (6 lines, engraved, white) on a freestone slab, now reduced in size and set into the wall.

-  Elyott More, armiger, d. 5 Jul 1703, aet 73; son of Thomas and Margaret More.

303H Mural monument for John RICHBELL d. 1697/8, and his family

-  Bell-tower, West wall, above head height.

-  155(W) x 285(H)~Details replaced; gilding faded; some heraldic colour.

-  Arms on a cornice, flanked by urns (not original); entablature of grey marble on 3 pilasters (in rance?) with capitals decorated by symbols of mortality; arched topped black panels with M.I.s (engraved, gilded); decoration in spandrels; below, base mouldings on corbels (not original); in centre, white marble cherub's head.

-  Note: all lifespans baptism to burial - John Richbell, Gent. (of London), 31 Aug 1639 - 3 Feb 1697/8, aet 57; his wife, Abigail, 26 Feb 1639/40 - 21 Apr 1715, aet 75, daughter of Thomas More, Esq., of Morehouse; their issue - eldest son, John, 24 Mar 1667 - 8 Aug 1712, aet 45; daughter, Frances, 20 Dec 1669 - 14 Feb 1694/5, aet 25; Elizabeth, 6 Feb 1671 - 28 Jun 1694, aet 24; Elyott, 26 Apr 1674 - 28 Jan 1715/6, aet 42; Ann, 9 Apr 1676 - 16 Apr 1700, aet 24; George, 8 Jun 1679 - 7 Aug 1693, aet 14; all buried Wivelsfield; except George and Elizabeth, buried London.

303I Floor monument for Ann MORE, d. 1691

-  Bell-tower, West wall, partly obscured.

-  70(visible W) x 84(H)~Fair.

-  M.I. (11 lines, Latin, engraved, white), final 2 lines (English) reversed, on grey stone slab.

-  Ann More, 12 Dec 1691, aet 43; daughter of Edward Paine, armiger, of East Grinstead; and wife of Elyott More, armiger.