St Mary’s, Staindrop, County Durham

It was a visit to St Mary’s Church, Staindrop, County Durham, that sparked my passion for photographing church monuments combining history and sculpture.

Staindrop contains the tomb of Ralph, 1st Earl Westmoreland, and his two wives: Margaret Stafford and Joan Beaufort.

What I hadn’t known before my visit is that it also contained the tomb of William Harry Vane, 1st Duke Cleveland,  sculpted by Richard Westmacott; one of his finest works.

Tomb of William Harry Vane, 1st Duke Cleveland

William Harry Vane, 1746-182, a great great grandson of King Charles II. William Harry’s paternal grandfather Henry Vane, 1705-1758, married Grace Stewart, the daughter of Charles Stewart, 1st Duke Southampton, the illegitimate son of King Charles II and Barbara Villiers, 1st Duchess Cleveland, 1640-1709.

Staindrop Staindrop_Church_20161219-103047-Edit

Staindrop Staindrop_Church_20161218-135426
Effigy of William Harry Vane, 1st Duke Cleveland, 1766-1842, at St Mary’s Church, Staindrop, County, Durham. Sculpted by Richard Westmacott.

Staindrop Staindrop_Church_20161218-135702

The arms of William Harry Vane being Vane: three gauntlets sinister (left) indicating either illegitimacy or attainder, and Charles, Duke of Grafton, illegitimate son of King Charles II England differenced by a baton sinister to indicate illegitimacy.

Staindrop Staindrop_Church_20161218-135734

Staindrop Staindrop_Church_20161218-135757

Ralph Neville, 1st Earl Westmoreland

Ralph Neville, 1st Earl Westmoreland, 1364-1425, the progenitor of the Neville family as a result of his having 22 children, 73 grandchildren, 153 great grandchildren and 211 great great grandchildren. A number only exceeded by John of Gaunt.

Ralph’s first wife Margaret Stafford, 1364-1396, was his second cousin once removed and his fourth cousin. They had eight children together.

After Margaret’s death in 1396 he married Joan Beaufort, 1379-1440, granddaughter of Edward III. She and Ralph had fourteen children together.

Given the number of descendants it is not surprising that some were Lancastrians and some Yorkist during the Wars of the Roses:

John, Baron Neville, 1410-1461. Lancastrian. Killed at Battle of Towton.

Humphrey of Brancepeth, c 1439-1469. Lancastrian. Beheaded.

Charles -1449 brother of Humphrey). Lancastrian. Beheaded.

Ralph Dacre, 1st Baron Gilsland, 1412-1461. Lancastrian. Killed at Battle of Towton.

John “Butcher” Clifford, 9th Baron Clifford, 1435-1461. Lancastrian. Killed at Battle of Dintingdale.

Roger Clifford, 1447-1485. Beheaded.

Richard Neville, 5th Earl Salisbury, 1400-1460. Yorkist. Beheaded after Battle of Wakefield.

Richard “Kingmaker Neville, Earl Warwick and Salisbury, 1428-1471. Yorkist and Lancastrian. Killed Battle of Barnet.

His descendants also include King Edward IV, King Richard III, King Henry VIII, King Edward VI, Queens Mary and Elizabeth, and all of the English and British monarchs since James I King England.

Staindrop Staindrop_Church_20161218-140306

Staindrop Staindrop_Church_20161218-140613

Staindrop Staindrop_Church_20161218-140656

Staindrop Staindrop_Church_20161219-102341

Staindrop Staindrop_Church_20161219-102759

Memorial to Sophia Poulett

Sophia being the wife of William Harry’s son Henry, 2nd Duke Cleveland.

Staindrop Staindrop_Church_20161219-103252

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s