George Fellowes Prynne

 

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TAVISTOCK Devon
St. Eustachius

Fellowes Prynne had considerable dealings with this church, although it is not clear whether all the work cited below was actually done. It is known that some has since been removed.

In a report dated 30 November 1896, Fellowes Prynne made suggestions regarding three pieces of work:

1st The opening up of the West End by removal of the inconveniently placed and unsightly platforms…and refixing Font in a more suitable and convenient position…
2nd As to the best method of re-lighting
3rd As to possible enlargement of Vestries

Fellowes Prynne had at this stage already sent his plan for the first job to the vicar. It included a new base step to the font, and marble paving in the newly formed baptistery, and the cost would be about £70. As regards the second item, he expounded at length on the merits of pendants from the roof:

It must not be thought for one moment that I propose large Coronae in the centre of the nave. What I suggest is a double row of pendants in the Nave and a single row in the Aisles, with very small Coronae, with about seven fairly powerful burners to each Corona… I should approximately estimate the cost at about £180 complete.

As for item 3 on his list, Fellowes Prynne reckoned £300 would allow him to do a …very acceptable addition to the Vestry.

He concludes his report:

The possibilities of rendering your fine Parish Church more beautiful by decoration and otherwise are very great, but the most important and practical part of the work is included in the items particularly noted on this report.

It seems that the parish agreed with Fellowes Prynne over the possibilities of beautifying the church, as the Dart and Francis records show the following sequence of correspondence:

  • 16 Sep 1919 - estimate sent for oak reredos, 2 riddels and angels: £187
  • 28 Jun 1920 - order to go ahead
  • 30 Jun 1920 - design for riddels and wall panelling on the way
  • 07 Jul 1920 - design of gradine returned
  • 17 Jul 1920 - oak riddels, 2 angels, 2 panels for east wall: £135
  • 03 Aug 1920 - letter re. the above, plus reredos
  • 08 Nov 1920 - design for War Memorial
  • 14 Feb 1921 - inscription on panelling
  • 06 Dec 1922 - drawing returned of panelling and reredos

The Dart and Francis records are incomplete, but it is evident that the altar and altar rails are also to Fellowes Prynne’s design, and were presumably in situ prior to the planned reredos. It is not clear whether the reredos was ever installed. The undated postcard (illustrated above) clearly shows a number of features of Fellowes Prynne's work here, some of which can no longer be seen. Note the carved altar with frontal showing through, the reredos and riddels, complete with angels, the sanctuary panelling, the wooden altar rail, the stalls and the prayer stall. The sanctuary was redesigned in 1952, and the wood panelling presumably removed then.

The Lady chapel has a communion rail which is clearly to a design by Fellowes Prynne, and it is possible that he did other work here.