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

(39) BRIGHTLING, St. Thomas à Becket

The church is mainly 13th-14th century, with a few puzzling modern additions [18th century?]; the porch is dated 1749; the roughly equal size of chancel and North chapel is hard to explain - Nairn & Pevsner (424-5); for a plan see SNQ (XI 147); for view from South-East by Grimm (1784), see BL Add. MS 5670 f.64; in 1724 condition reportedly fine (Ford); monuments originally in the floor were reset as murals during the 1903 restoration; there is a remarkable series of 14 monuments commemorating many generations of the Collins family, Lords of the Manor of Socknersh (10 Collins monuments dated 1667-1717); the Fullers followed the Collins; a house site was acquired by Thomas Fuller in 1698 and from 1703, possessed by John Fuller (1680-1745), ironmaster and honouring his wife, renamed Rose Hill; their son was John II (1706-55); his son, John III (1757-1834) was patron of the young JMW Turner (Farrant); this Fuller (known as 'Mad Jack') won the local parliamentary seat from Col. Sergison at Cuckfield (72), redecorated the interior of the church and erected several monuments, his own (too late for this survey) signed by Henry Rouw of London (for Fuller, 1757-1834, see biography in ODNB by JPJ Entract); compared to his architectural patronage (see his ambitious pyramidal mausoleum built 1810 at Brightling and his ownership of Bodiam Castle from 1829), Fuller's monuments are very conventional; Willatts (SAC 125 107) lists 6 iron slabs here, all pre-cast and incised, intended for churchyard use.

39A Brasses for Richard GLYD, d. 1618 and Martha his wife, d. 1619

-  Nave, West wall, near South-West door, at head height.

-  Stone: 65(W) x 164(H); Three brasses: 52(W) x 16.5(H); 49.5(W) x 13.5(H); 54(W) x 18(H)~Good.

-  3 brasses on a freestone slab, mounted on the wall.

39B Wall-mounted ledger for Edward ENGLISH, d. 1661

-  On West wall, under the tower, now a vestry.

-  74(W) x 155(L)~Worn, damaged, repaired.

-  Arms then M.I. (10 lines, engraved) on a slate slab, now wall-mounted.

39C Wall-mounted ledger for Elizabeth COLLINS, d. 1676

-  On North wall, under the tower, now a vestry.

-  88(W) x 195(L)~Good; damaged; faded.

-  Arms then M.I. (19 lines, engraved, Latin) on a freestone slab.

-  Elizabeth Collins, d. 13 Jun 1676, aet 52 [?]; daughter of Peter Farnden, of Selscomb [Sedlescombe?]; and widow of Thomas Collins; also, a nephew, one Peter G...

39D Wall-mounted ledger for Thomas COLLINS, d. 1667

-  On North wall, under the tower, now a vestry.

-  88(W) x 197(L)~Good.

-  Close to 39C (his wife); M.I. (engraved, centred).

-  Thomas Collins, of Socknersh, armiger and magistrate, d. 30 Dec 1667, aet 67; his wife Elizabeth, daughter of Peter Farnden, armiger.

39E Mural monument for William SHIELD, 1829

-  North nave clerestory, high.

-  Inaccessible~Fine.

-  An unframed white marble tablet with arched top; above, a portrait roundel in low relief, facing East, beneath a draped wreath; lower, M.I. (14 lines, engraved, black); below that, a blocked base moulding on 2 block corbels with paterae; signed (below): 'PETER ROUW, Sculptor, Portland Road, LONDON'.

-  William Shield, Esq., royal musician, d. 25 Jan 1829, aet 80, buried at Westminster Abbey; patron John Fuller, of Rose Hill, Esq.

39F Mural monument for Dr. Primrose BLAIR, d. 1819

-  North chancel arch pier, West face, at head height.

-  100(W) x 131(H)~Excellent; faded.

-  Mostly white marble; on a pedestal in low relief, an urn; entwined snakes for handles; grey slate baseplate; below M.I. on an unframed rectangular panel; simple block corbels.

-  Dr. Primrose Blair, naval Physician, d. 27 Jan 1819, aet 59, buried St. Martins [-in-the-Fields], London; patron, John Fuller, Esq.

39G Mural monument for Thomas COLLINS, d. 1709 and his wife Margaret, d. 1720

-  On North aisle chapel (Lambarde) wall, North-West corner.

-  90(W) x 184(H)~Excellent; faded.

-  M.I. (engraved; final 3 lines added) on a white marble cartouche; drapery and cherubim surrounds; above, arms; below, a pedestal with scrolls, foliage and a laurel wreathed death's head.

-  Thomas Collins, of Socknersh, d. 13 Dec 1709, aet 80; his wife, Margareta, d. 2 May 1720, aet 85; daughter of Henry Cox, of Swanmore, Southampton.

39H Anonymous ledger, d. 1802

-  On North aisle chapel wall, near West end, below 39G.

-  50(W) x 37(L)~Poor, worn.

-  M.I. (7 lines, shallow engraved) on a rough freestone slab.

39I M.I. on brass commemorating John BATYS' bequest, 1635

-  North aisle chapel, North wall, at head height, between windows.

-  Slab: 61(W) x 147(H); Brass: 50(W) x 47(H)~Fine.

-  M.I. (engraved) on a brass plate on a freestone slab; alongside earlier brasses (one now missing).

-  Also cited is Sir Thomas Sackvill, Knt.; also Thomas, Lord Coventry, Lord Keeper.

39J Mural monument for Thomas COLLINS, d. 1671, Margaret Collins, d. 1681 and William Collins, d. 1690

-  North aisle chapel, North wall, on wall in North-East corner.

-  70(W) x 160(H)~Excellent.

-  M.I. (15 lines, engraved) on white marble convex cartouche, scrolled edges; mourning cherubs left and right; below, a crowned death's head as bracket; above, splendid scrolled achievement.

-  Thomas Collins, buried 29 Aug 1671; Margaret Collins, buried 26 Jan 1681; William Collins, buried 9 Jun 1690; their parents, also Thomas Collins, Esq., of Socknersh, Brightling and Margaret, daughter of Henry Collins, of Swanmore, Hampshire, heir to William Collins, Esq., her uncle, of Corhampton, Hampshire.

39K Mural monument for Henry COLLINS, d. 1753

-  North aisle chapel, North wall, across North-East corner.

-  75(W) x 163(H)~Excellent; faded.

-  M.I. (15 lines, engraved) on white marble convex cartouche; decorated scrolls on edges; below, a cherub as bracket; above, achievement; 2 cherubs flanking.

-  Henry Collins, Esq., of Socknersh, d. 20 Mar 1753, aet 41; his father also Henry Collins; his mother, Mary Plumer, of Hollingbourne, Kent; his wife, a daughter of James Venables, Esq., of Woodcotts, Hampshire.

39L Wall-mounted slab for Marie COLLINS, d. 1618

-  North aisle chapel, North wall, North-East corner, at head height.

-  87.5(W) x 54(L)~Fair.

-  M.I. (6 lines, engraved) on a pale sandstone slab.

39M Wall-mounted slab for Henry COLLINS, d. 1705/6

-  North aisle chapel, East wall, low.

-  53(W) x 68(H)~Very good; stained, faded.

-  M.I. (9 lines, engraved, centred)) on an unframed marble slab.

-  Henry Collins, d. 13 Jan 1705/6, an infant; son of another Henry Collins, Gent., of Socknersh, and his wife, Mary.

39N Wall-mounted slab for Margaret COLLINS, d. 1697

-  North aisle chapel, East wall, low.

-  61(W) x 89(H)~Very good; stained.

-  M.I. (10 lines, engraved, centred) on an unframed marble slab.

-  Margaret Collins, d. 5 Jun 1697, an infant; daughter of Henry Collins, Gent. of Socknersh, and his wife Mary.

39O Wall-mounted slab for Thomas COLLINS, d. 1698/9

-  North aisle chapel, East wall, low.

-  61(W) x 89(H)~Good; stained, faded.

-  M.I. (8 lines, engraved, centred) on an unframed marble slab.

-  Thomas Collins, d. 20 Mar 1698/9, an infant; son of Henry Collins, Gent., of Socknersh, and his wife, Mary.

39P Wall-mounted slab for Mary COLLINS, d. 1703/4

-  North aisle chapel, East wall, low.

-  61(W) x 89(H)~Very good, faded.

-  M.I. (9 lines, engraved, centred) on an unframed marble slab.

-  Mary Collins, d. 10 Feb 1703/4, aet 1; daughter of Henry Collins, Gent., of Socknersh, and his wife, Mary.

39Q Mural monument for Margaret COLLINS, d. 1719

-  North aisle chapel, East wall, low.

-  61(W) x 95(H)~Good, faded.

-  M.I. (7 lines, engraved) in upper 60% of a veined marble slab.

-  Margaret Collins, d. 20 Dec 1719, an infant; daughter of Henry Collins, Gent., of Sockbersh, and his wife, Mary.

39R Ledger for William COLLINS, d. 1713

-  North aisle chapel, East wall, low.

-  55(W) x 60(H)~Good, faded.

-  As 39Q.

-  William Collins, d. 3 Sep 1713, an infant; son of Henry Collins, Gent., of Socknersh, and his wife, Mary.

39S Mural monument for Henry COLLINS, d. 1743 and his wife Mary, d. 1746

-  North aisle chapel, East end, South of window, above head height.

-  80(W) x 174(H)~Very good.

-  M.I. (12 lines, engraved) in 2 stages, on white marble cartouche; scrolled and draped edges; below, winged death's head bracket; above, achievement.

-  Henry Collins, Esq., of Cornhampton, Hampshire, d. 13 Nov 1743, aet 69; his wife, Mary, d. at Cornhampton, 12 Sep 1746, aet 68.

39T Wall-mounted brass for Mary COLLINS, d. 1648

-  North aisle chapel, East wall, at head height, below 39S.

-  Stone slab: 41(W) x 74(H); Brass: 53(W) x 21(H)~Fine.

-  M.I. (engraved) on brass plate mounted in centre of freestone slab.

-  Mary Collins, d. 7 Dec 1648; daughter of Anthony Cruttenden, of Burwash; and first wife of Thomas Collins, of Socknersh; no issue.

39U Brasses for Thomas PYE, d. 1592

-  Chancel, South wall, East end, at head height.

-  Upper M.I.: 35(W) x 6.5(H); Figure and scrolls: 14(H); Lower M.I.: 47(W) x 12.5(H); Stone slab: 53(W) x 65(H)~Very good.

-  5 brasses mounted on a slab (Horsham stone?) with a moulded wooden frame; Upper M.I. records patron; Scrolls bearing mottos on left and right of a kneeling male figure; Lower M.I. (7 lines, engraved).

-  Thomas Pye, d. 4 Jun 1592, an infant; only son of another Thomas Pye, D.D.; his virtues.

39V Mural monument for members of the BURRELL family, erected c.1790.

-  Chancel, centre of South wall, above head height.

-  91(W) x 144(H)~Very good.

-  Mainly in white marble; a draped urn in yellow freestone mounted on a cornice moulding; below, M.I. (many lines, final 2 added, engraved, black) on an unframed panel; below, small curved apron with fern and arms.

-  Members of the extended family who d. 1708-89 include Rev. William Burrell, A.M., rector and prebendary of Brightling, buried 2 Aug 1708, son of William Burrell, Gent., of Chicknell St. James, Essex; his wife Honor, d. 6 Jan 1694, daughter of John Wotton, Gent., of Malton, Cambridgeshire; his mother, Dorothy Burrell, buried 5 Jan 1714; his youngest daughter, Dorothea, buried 28 Feb 1741, aet 50, married to Richard Holmes, Esq., of Burnham; his eldest son Rev. William Burrell, chaplain to King George, rector of Brightling, vicar of Icklesham and rector of Burwash, d. 7 May 1737, aet 53, whose wife was Elizabeth, daughter of Laurence Noakes, of Brightling, d. 18 Jul 1769, aet 80, and their issue: elder daughter, Elizabeth, d. 8 May 1744, aet 32; elder son Rev. William Burrell, rector and prebendary of Brightling, d. 11 Jun 1746, aet 33; son John Burrell, A.B., succeeded his brother as rector and prebendary of Brightling, d 13 Jun 1752, aet 33; and younger daughter, Anne, d. 19 Oct 1776, aet 60, wife of Rev. William Hayley, A.M., rector and prebendary of Brightling and vicar of Preston with Hove, who d. 25 Oct 1789, aet 74; also, Rev. William Burrell Hayley, rector of Brightling, d. 1796, aet 41 and his wife Sophia, d. 1830, aet 77.