From The Neolithic To The Sea: A Journey From The Past To The Present

All Saints Church, Pontifract

53° 41′ 46.07″ N 1° 18′ 2.66″ W
14th Century

  • History
  • Gallery
  • Gallery
  • Gallery
All Saints Church is located in Pontifract, Yorkshire. It is a mixture of ancient ruin and modern church.

The older part of the church was built sometime in the the 14th and 15th century. It was ruined in the Civil War, when the Parliamentarians, in December 1644, laid siege to the church, which was being held by the Royalists, armed with 11 cannons. The church suffered extensive damage with 60 18lb cannonballs being fired in one day from Monkhill. In June 1645, the church was now under the occupation of Parliamentarians, it was then laid siege by Royalists, who occupied Pontefract Castle. In defending the church the Parliamentarians made siege works within the already ruined church and pillaged the church of its materials. By 1649 the church roof had been completely removed.

Alterations were made to the ruins in 1838. The outer church is a cruciform plan, built of Ashlar sandstone with some rendering. The ruined nave with north and south porches contains the newer structure. The ruined structure has an octagonal tower added in the 18th century. There is a heavily ruined aisled chancel with a 19th-century inserted sanctuary. The south aisle of the nave has four bays with a porch in the second. The west end of the nave is buttressed flank with a four-centred arched doorway. The North nave is as the south with a two-story porch in the second bay. The central tower has paired windows each with two trefoiled lights with a quatrefoil in the arch and hoodmoulds. The tower has a clock face in an ogee crocketed canopy.

The inner church was completed in 1967 to a design by George G Pace. It is of brick construction with a pitched roof. The front is adorned with five medieval heads. It contained Victorian pews, which have since been replaced. The south chancel aisle has an ogee-headed tomb niche. The north and south walls have offset windows and the roof skylights, positioned so not to be obscured by the ruins of the outer church.

The church has been Grade II* listed since 29 July 1950.