about the J. W. Walker & Sons Ltd. Chapel Organ.
There has always been a church on the site of All Saints' since
Norman times, although All Hallows, as it was then, was not the
'Mother Church' of the ancient settlement. The church we see
today, however, is that built after the Great Fire of Northampton
After the fire, a parliamentary commission was formed to rebuild
the historic church and indeed the settlement. The Parliamentarian
leanings of Northampton had resulted in the razing of the castle
by King Charles II after his invitation to reclaim the throne in
1660. Despite this, the Earl of Northampton, a friend and
confidant of the King, persuaded Charles II to contribute 1000
tons of timber from the Royal forests of Salcey and Rockingham.
Such a magnanimous gesture, together with the repeal of the
'chimney tax' endeared the King to the people of Northamptonshire.
As a result, they and others throughout the country, contributed
rebuilding fund. A statue of the King by John Hunt was erected on
the portico parapet in 1712 in memory and thanksgiving for his
part in the rebuilding. Underneath the statue is the following
This Statue was
erected in memory of King Charles II who gave a
thousand tun of timber towards the rebuilding of this
church and to this town seven years chimney money
collected in it.
The current floor plan of All Saints' Church reveals much
about the history of the building itself. The original church
was twice the length of the present building. Only the tower &
crypt under the chancel survived the fire.
The Portico design
is a copy of the Inigo Jones portico of Old St. Pauls, London.
The statue of King Charles II adorns the parapet. The
Memorial, or Lady Chapel was the last substantial addition to
the building, added in the 1920s in memory of those who lost
their lives in the World War I.
A recently carved statue of
Our Lady of Walsingham adorns the chapel.
We are are one of the few Parish Church in the country to have a
Consistory (Ecclesiastical) Court. Consistory Courts were
established by a charter of King William I, and still exist today,
although since about the middle of the 19th century consistory
courts have lost much of their subject-matter jurisdiction. Each
diocese in the Church of England has a consistory court.
Today, the principal business of Consistory Courts is now the
dispensing of faculties dealing with churchyards and church
property, although they also hear the trial of clergy (below
the rank of bishop) accused of immoral acts or misconduct
(under the Clergy Discipline Act 1892). The Court is located on
the North side of the building, having previously been located
in the space now occupied by the Coffee Shop.
You may enjoy the video clip below about the founding of the first
infirmary in Northampton. In the film an actor reads portions of
a Sermon preached in All Saints by the Revd Philip Doddridge in
which he urged support for the hospital.