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Bridlington Priory West Side |

Bridlington Priory West Side

Bridlington Priory written by the late John. W. Lamb, M.A., Ph.D.

On entering the churchyard at the South West corner and going northwards there can be obtained a full view of the West Front. The attention is at once arrested by the contrasting styles of architecture so harmoniously blending to give a lasting impression of magnificence, stateliness and beauty.

The North West Tower is not completely Early English: its circular- headed doorway with its deep mouldings and the jambs of the window above are of this period, but the window itself and the stages above contain Geometrical tracery of the fourteenth century.

It will also be observed that some Decorated arcading is to be seen on the walls.

The foundations of this tower rest upon the foundation of the Norman Church, and original stonework of this period can be seen projecting just above ground level.

The South West Tower is Perpendicular throughout, and reaches a height of 150 feet. The small ogee-headed doorway, the four-centred window above, and the windows of the other two storeys are perfect in their proportions. The top storey, which houses a ring of eight bells, was added during the nineteenth century restoration (as was the top storey of the N.W. tower). This tower, with its panelled walls, panelled and gables buttresses, surmounted by its embattled parapet, spirelets. octagonal-spired pinnacles richly crocketed, stands sentinel over the Town with a majesty and beauty unsurpassed. It provides the highest vantage point from which can be seen the line sweep of the Bay.

These two towers, belonging to periods of architecture so distinct. are united by a perfect example of a window in the Perpendicular style. This Great West Window, measuring 55 feet by 27 feet is considered to be the largest West Window in the North of England. An unique feature of its construction is that the whole of the window above the transom is set back nine inches.

Immediately below is the lovely doorway which is a treasure from a bygone age. Its ogee-head, beautifully crocketed, with richly carved niche: superb finial; lovely foliage capitals; the niches in the jambs of deep set mouldings decorated with grapes, acorns and olives; the fierce looking animals springing from the ends of the hood, which terminates in panelled pilasters with crocketed pinnacles, make this doorway truly queenly in its magnificence. On each side of the doorway and continued to the outer buttress to the South are canopied niches with empty pedestals which seem to await the completing presence of carved statues.