About this church
St Hilary's was built to replace an earlier church, which was dedicated to St Hilary & St Albinus. That name itself was due to the fact that there had originally been two churches in the village, however the site of St Albinus is not recorded. It is built almost entirely of local blue Oolite stone, dressed with Ancaster stone, and is in the geometric style of gothic architecture. It was built in memory of the rector, Revd HF Hutton, who was incumbent for 32 years. A brass plaque commemorating this is on the west wall. The church's design follows a simple box plan with no separate chancel. This was done intentionally so as to avoid aisles that would obscure sight and impede hearing. The rector in 1875, Revd Arthur W Hutton (son of the former rector) observed 'that experience must decide whether the effort has been successful'. The west end stained glass windows depict the early life of Jesus, and are colourful and detailed. There is a rose window above. This was releaded in 1993. The chancel makes good use of wooden panelling. The cancellum screen has wrought iron gates and three steps, creating the chancel area. The side panelling forms the vestry and organ loft. Oak carvings of angels either side of the chancel were carved by the same sculptor who carved the figure of Christ the Good Shepherd by the entrance. The east window shows the figure of Christ in Majesty, with St Peter and St Paul on either side, and St Hugh of Lincoln, St Hilary and St Gregory below. Many features in the church indicate the influence of the Oxford Movement of the 19th century. There is one bell dating from 1802, however Revd AW Hutton noted that 'there is ample room and strength in the tower for a peal of six or eight bells, which perhaps will find their way here some day'. Above the doorway in the north tower wall is a niche containing the figure of Christ the Good Shepherd, carved by Ruddock. The priest's door contains a carving of St Hilary, Bishop of Poitiers, born around 300 AD in France.