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THE WINDOWS

 

Before the 1852 church restoration, there was old painted glass at St. Mary's, particularly in the Lady Chapel East, and Sanctuary East, windows. In the former the Arms of the Roberts family and in the latter, those of Thomas of Woodstock, 1355-1397 (Duke of Gloucester, 6th son of King Edward III), and his Duchess Eleanor, heiresss of Humphrey of Bohun. There is no trace of any earlier glass, which is not surprising given the total reshaping of the windows at least twice in the 19th century, and the disappearance of all medieval windows from the building.

Sanctuary

There are two small windows, one on either side of the Sanctuary. That on the south side, a double light, is now plain but contained glass in memory of Sarah Wright of Neasden, put in in 1865. Only the top light containing a scene of two angels holding a cross remains of this window.

The matching window on the north side is also a double light, a memorial to W B Marshall, dated 1858. The east light represents the Garden of Gethsemane with the text Luke 22 v 42b. The west light represents the Ascension of our Lord and has a text based on Ephesians 4 v 8. Above are portrayed angel musicians. This window was recently badly damaged in a burglary in September 2006.

Click to see full sized picture 

The great east window is modern. The Victorian east window was destroyed by enemy action during the 1940s and the present window was designed and installed by Messrs Goddard and Gibbs in the early 1950s under the War Damage Compensation Legislation. The window is of stained glass and represents Christ in Glory. He is shown seated on a rainbow in a blue sky and surrounded by tongues of fire of the Holy Spirit. His right hand is lifted in blessing and in His left is the Book of Life, represented by the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet, Alpha and Omega. At His feet are the seven stars referred to in Revelation 3 v 1.

On the north side of the window is the Blessed Virgin Mary, Patron of the Parish, and on the south side kneels King Athelstan, with his name and title written on his sword. At his foot is a bag of money, a sign of the founder of the parish. The text of Job 14 v 6 is written beneath the figure of Christ. Above are the four Evangelists, traditionally represented as the four beasts' heads from Revelation 4 v 7.

Click on the picture to see a larger version.

 

North Aisle

The most easterly of the four windows is a memorial to Marion Baker dated 1878. It is a double light representing the Resurrection morning. In the east light are shown three women with spices and in the west light are two angels with the grave clothes and the text from Luke 24 v 5b. Above are portrayed four angels. The west light of this window was totally destroyed by vandals in 1977 and reconstructed from photographs by Hooker Glass Ltd in 1981.

The next window to the west is a double light in memory of the Harris family and dated 1938. The east light is St. Cecelia, the Patron Saint of Church Music, holding a lyre. The west light shows St. Agnes, an early Christian martyr, with a lamb, probably a play on words as "Agnus" is the Latin for lamb. Above are three lilies, the flower of the Blessed Virgin and a crown, no doubt of martyrdom, Revelation 2 v 10.

The third window on the north side of the church is the modern stained glass Kilburn Grammar School Memorial window by Goddard and Gibbs. This was presented to the church on 27 October 1985 by the Old Boys Association of Kilburn Grammar School. This school, which was closed in 1965, was a great influence on Willesden for over 70 years and the window commemorates the school and incorporates its War Memorial. It is a double light showing Bishop Mandell Creighton, patron of the school, and Rev. H G Bonavia-Hunt, Vicar of St. Pauls Kilburn now demolished, its first Warden. The arms of the Borough of Willesden and those of Middlesex County Council are displayed above.

The next window is plain and no record of any decoration exists.

At the west end of this aisle are two double lights approached from the gallery. They are not dedicated to anyone and have no date. They show four bishops in full pontificals with pastoral staff. William of Wykeham is shown with a model of Winchester Cathedral which he founded. St. Chad of Durham, St. Hugh of Lincoln and St. Alban the Martyr are also represented, but the reason for this choice is unclear.

Above these lights a small rose window depicts four Angels playing harp, violin, and trumpets.

Gallery

The west window is now behind the organ, but can be clearly seen from the gallery. It is a memorial to Emma May Kitchen and dated 1975. It represents Mary Magdalene in three biblical passages. In the south light is represented the scene from Mark 14 v 3, of Mary annointing Christ's feet. In the centre is represented the scene in Luke 10 v 38-42 of Martha and Mary, the two being connected by the remark in John 11 v 2. The north light represents the scene at the tomb with Mary Magdalene and Mary, from Matthew 28 v 5-6.

Nave

Under the organ gallery is a small window at the south side of the west door. It has two lights, the east is plain having been lost, but the west light shows figures with sheep and the text of Isaiah 41 v 11.

Baptistery

The small single light in the south wall is a memorial to Eliza Taylor and dated 1871. It shows Christ standing with little children.

South Aisle

The only window in this aisle is plain but once contained glass in memory of the wife of Rev. J C Wharton, Vicar 1864-1888. Above remain the representations of four angels.

Shrine Chapel

The south window is now plain but contained glass dedicated to the Mulock family dated 1866. [This window, lost as a result of enemy action during the 1939-45 war, was given by Mrs Maria Craik in memory of her mother (one time post-mistress at the local post office next to the Six Bells) and two brothers. Maria lived in a house now known as the "White Hart" and had fame as the authoress of "John Halifax, Gentleman", which the BBC serialised in the 1970s. The subjects of the missing window are believed to have been the Good Shepherd, the Virgin and Child, the Presentation in the Temple, Florence Nightingale, and a geometrical pattern. An extant plaque under the window reads:

"In Remembrance of Dinah wife of Thomas Mulock and her Two Sons

Thomas Mellard Mulock & Benjamin Robert Mulock They died

1845, 1847, & 1863, & all rest here. Her Son in Law George Lillie Craik

& her daughter Dinah Maria his wife have erected this

window. Christmas 1866."]

The east window is an illustration of the story of Joseph. It was presented by William and Elizabeth Graham in 1968. It has three lights. The north light shows Joseph sold into captivity (Genesis 38 v 28). The south light shows Joseph, now ruler of Egypt, accusing his brothers of theft (Genesis 45 v 14-17). The centre light shows Joseph welcoming his father Jacob to Egypt (Genesis 47 v 29). Above the scene is a roundel representing the dreams which form a large element in the story. In the north light, the sun and moon and stars bow down to Joseph (Genesis 37 v 9). In the south light the sheaves of corn of his brothers bow to his sheaf of corn, Genesis (37 v 7). In the centre light is Pharaoh's dream of seven fat and lean cows and seven fat and parched ears of corn (Genesis 41 v 17-24). Above is represented six angels proclaiming Alleluia.

The text across the bottom of the window is the first verse of Psalm 133 taken from the Authorised Version of the Bible (1611) rather than the Prayer Book which uses Miles Coverdale's translation of 1538. An unusual choice in an Anglican church.

 

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