Thursday, September 23, 2010

1,000 year old church window found.

Britain's oldest working window frame built 1,000 years ago found buried in wall of Saxon church

Last updated at 12:38 PM on 23rd September 2010
Builders working on a tiny Saxon church have unearthed Britain's oldest working window, dating back to pre-1066.
The wooden-framed window was built 1,000 years ago but lay buried in the wall of St Andrew's Church for about 150 years after it was covered up by Victorian renovations.
It has now been revealed after shocked workmen spotted the distinctive frame while renovating the Saxon building, in the village of Boxford, near Newbury, Berkshire.
Archeologists and historians have studied the workmanship of the window and have found that it dates back to before the Norman Conquest.
The tiny wooden frame measures 2ft tall by 1ft wide
The tiny wooden frame measures 2ft tall by 1ft wide and had been buried in the church's wall
It is one of just a handful of windows in the country that pre-dates 1066 but is the only one that opens.
The opening was first uncovered in July this year as the small church underwent restoration.
Workmen carefully removed a concrete render, which had been placed on the outside of the north wall of the church in the Victorian era.
They unpeeled the concrete to reveal a rough-hewn oak frame of the 2ft by 1ft window, containing a wooden panel of the same material which would have been tied using hemp as a hinge.
Stunned church staff called in archeologists and medieval specialists, who determined the method of building the window dated back to well before 1066.
Experts from the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings have confirmed the findings and said the window is 'remarkable in its completeness.'  
The window is now fully displayed at the church - one of just five specimens dating back to before the Norman Conquest, and believed to be the only one with a working shutter.

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