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Church Post Code  LE15 8SE

Open to visitors

It was a warm and humid early September afternoon in 2014, and David and I were exploring churches to the south of Rutland Water; an area of small picturesque villages, beautiful countryside and open churches. The church of St Peter & St Paul was the first church visited, with half a dozen churches lined up before we headed off to an evening prayer service which I think from memory might have been at Oakham.

Some areas that I visit, I have grown very fond of over the years, such as this area of Rutland; especially on an afternoon such as this. Time spent out of the rat race, the sun on my back, out with my friend, seeing beautiful things; this is why we do what we do!

Wing is one of a cluster of villages to be found to the south of Rutland Water; it can be found roughly mid way between Rutland’s two towns, with Uppingham four miles away to the south west, with Oakham a little further away to the north west. The Northamptonshire border is a short distance off to the south; the Lincolnshire border is off to the east, with Stamford some ten miles distant.


The church of St Peter & St Paul is located at the south eastern end of the village. There is a maze or labyrinth on the edge of the village which dates back to medieval times. A quick look at the map of the village when preparing this shows the church is against Top Street, which is intersected by Middle Street, which leads to Bottom Street!

The church that we see today stands on raised ground, with a flight of stone steps leading towards the north porch. It consists of west tower, nave with north and south aisles and clerestories, north porch, north vestry and chancel.

The church dates back to the mid-12th century, but much of the structure is 13th to 14th centuries. There was much Victorian rebuilding here with the chancel being rebuilt in 1875, with more rebuilding in the mid 1880’s at which point the south aisle was rebuilt. There used to be a spire here, which was removed in 1841, being deemed unsafe.

The ‘Church Open’ sign was out, which is typical of this friendly and welcoming area. Looking at the map, prior to putting these notes down, I can’t think of one church in this area that is normally closed to visitors.

Covid would have hit these churches hard, in terms of having to close their doors during the various restrictions. I heard time and time again from various churches, how hard it was for them to have to close; priding themselves of keeping their doors open for those who wished to use them.

In between the first and second national lockdowns, I travelled when possible. On one trip I visited around 15 churches in Lincolnshire; all of which were closed. We popped in to Wing on the way home; with the church being open and welcoming. Dependable; there should you need. An important Christian witness in challenging times!

I am a churchcrawler, I am also a practicing Christian who has gone through tough times and who has had need of an open church as somewhere to go to be at peace when the world is raging outside!


The church is of ironstone; with the late 14th century tower buttressed and battlemented, with the church clock set against the north face. There is a frieze running across the top of the tower, on all four sides, with a repeated quatrefoil design.

The walls of the south aisle and clerestory, which were rebuilt in 1885, were built in alternating bands of ironstone and freestone. The walls of the north and south aisles extend out to half way across the tower.

On the south exterior wall of the chancel is a wall monument to Richard Sharp Esq who died in 1773 aged 75 years. Script on this monument reads ‘Memento Mori’ which translates as ‘Remember Death’. This is a reminder and a warning to the onlooker that Man is mortal and will die. Therefore, live a good Christian life, trust in God and be at peace with God when your own time comes. In those days, when life expectancy was low, your own time could be sooner than you think!

Sadly, this warning came from personal experience. Also listed is his wife Margaret who died in 1754 aged 44 years; a young age yes, but this was not unusual for the day. However, a son of Sharp, whose name I just can’t decipher passed away in 1761 aged 8 years and Mary, a married daughter of his died in 1760 aged 27 years.

It was hard times for people then; and it is probably worth noting that these were people of means. How much worse would things have been then for those living in poverty!

There are five bells in the ring here. When Thomas North published his look at Rutland church bells in 1880 he noted that the first three of the ring were re-cast by Robert Taylor of St Neots in 1789. Each of the three is inscribed with the name Geo Paddy, who was church warden of the day. Taylor re-cast existing bells but I have no information on these pre-existing bells.

The fourth of the ring was suggested by North to be from Newcombe of Leicester. It was inscribed ‘GLORIA IN EXCELSIS DEO’ which translates as ‘Glory to God in the highest’. Since North’s study, this bell was re-cast by Taylor of Loughborough in 1903.

The fifth of the ring was cast by Thomas I Newcombe of Leicester and dates from 1510.


Moving inside, the visitor enters in through a late 12th century north doorway. There are three bay arcades to north and south; the south arcade is earlier, dating from around 1140. This arcade has rounded arches with zig zag decoration, substantial rounded piers with square capitals with fluted decoration.

The north arcade dates from around 1180; again having rounded arches, but these not having the decoration on them. The rounded piers are more slender and the capitals have a waterleaf design.

The chancel arch is pointed, and dates from the early 13th century. Looking towards the west, we can see that the arches on the western most bays of the north and south arcade disappear in to the west wall; this due to the fact that the tower, which was built after the arcades, encroached in to the body of the church.

Some bizarre stone human heads peer out throughout the interior; these include on peering out from behind a column that appears to have had many fights and lost each one.


As mentioned earlier, the chancel was rebuilt in 1875 but it does retain some medieval features, with the sedilia and ogee headed piscina on the south wall having been retained. Two arches to the north of the chancel lead in to the vestry. There is an aumbry against the north wall which is a Victorian copy.

There is plenty of stained glass here, with the east window being of three lights. At the centre is the risen Christ at the resurrection, hand raised in blessing with crucifixion wound visible on one hand and one foot. He holds a processional cross in his other hand. Christ is flanked by angels, with a solitary Roman soldier asleep off to one side.

In the tracery sits Christ, throned in majesty with angels in roundels below carrying shields which have the signs of the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end.

On the south wall of the chancel is a fine depiction of the raising of Lazarus. Jesus points upwards towards Heaven as Lazarus emerges from his tomb, shrouded with hands raised in prayer. Mary and Martha are present, Lazarus’ sisters.  Mary of Bethany is in the foreground, depicted with long hair. It was to be her who anointed Jesus’ feet with expensive perfume shortly after, in preparation for his death; wiping Jesus’ feet with her hair.


A two light window shows St Peter and St Paul. St Peter is easily identified by his receding hairline and his carrying the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven. Peter looks really sorrowful in this depiction.  St Paul has his head tilted to one side slightly but still looks you directly in the eye. As is usually the case, he is shown carrying a sword, with the tip of the sword pointing in to the ground.

St Peter is also depicted in a two light window. Jesus restores a kneeling Peter after he denied knowing him three times on the night of his arrest. The sun was shining through this window, with multi coloured reflections being cast on to the surrounding wall.

Some modern glass shows Jesus after meeting the two disciples on the road to Emmaus. Jesus is shown with a very large nimbus (halo). The script at the top is from Luke Chapter 24 verse 31 which reads in the King James Version ‘and their eyes were opened and they knew him’. Some modern translations replace the word ‘Knew’ with ‘recognise’. To my mind the older version has more impact!

A three light window has King David central, as usual easily recognisable by the fact that he is carrying a harp. He is flanked by Miriam and Deborah, each of whom was prophets. Miriam is depicted playing the cymbals; in Exodus Chapter 15 Miriam is said to have led the Hebrew women in singing and dancing after they had crossed the Red Sea.

Deborah was the only female Judge and judged for 40 years. She holds a scroll which reads ‘Awake awake utter a song’, this coming from Judges Chapter 5 verse 12.


It was good to take a look around the church grounds. There are plenty of finely crafted 18th century gravestones here but nothing in the grounds has its own Grade II Listing and there is nothing of any great rarity or importance.

A friend once said that my churchcrawling is, to an extent, a means to an end to travel and see new places. Yes, this is true to an extent. It is about the churches, that it why I do what I do. But it is also about visiting places that I wouldn’t otherwise have ever visited, with my life and memories being enriched that little bit more as a result!

This is a church with a big heart, which I have a great deal of time for. Worth taking a look at if you are in the area.

The majority of photographs used on this page are from my September 2014 visit. A few interior shots are from a subsequent visit, in February 2023 if you happen to notice a slight change in lighting conditions!

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