DescriptionThe Herbert Memorial and side chapel at St Nicholas parish church, Brushford, Somerset.
The memorial is located at the entrance to the side chapel which is on the north side of the main church. Both are designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens. The memorial itself consists of a life-sized recumbent effigy of Aubrey Herbert, on a stone tomb, his sword on an oak board above his head, and above a fine timber canopy with coats of arms.
The building of the Chapel was begun in the early Spring 1925 by Messrs G B Fisher & Son, Dulverton, Feb 23 1925. The Architect was Sir Edwin Lutyens RA, 17 Queen Anne’s Gate, Westminster, London.
Externally, the chapel is built using moorland stone to match the main church; a yellowy ashlar stone (Hamstone possibly) is used around the windows and door openings and as a banding to suggest a cross shape at the east end. Inside, the closely-spaced roof beams are segmented to form a rugged barrel vault or perhaps, an upturned boat. The chapel is a subtle piece of work that complements rather than eclipses the little church alongside.
The Carving of the Effigy of Colonel Herbert was made by Mr Cecil de Blaquière Howard of 14 Avenue du Maine Paris.
Lt Colonel, the Honourable Aubrey Nigel Henry Molyneux Herbert, died Sept 26 1923 and was buried at Brushford Friday Sept 26 1923. The Chapel was erected at the expense of the Honourable Mrs Aubrey Herbert, Elizabeth Countess of Carnarvon and the Honourable Mervyn Herbert. Herbert was a colourful character. He was born at Hichclere Castle. His older brother was the Earl of Carnarvon who discovered Tutankhamun’s tomb. He lived near Dulverton in Somerset. Despite being a Member of Parliament, he fought in the First World War and after being wounded, joined military intelligence. As a consequence of his interest in Albanian politics he was twice offered the throne. He was supposedly the inspiration for John Buchan's fictional, swashbuckling Sandy Arbuthnot in the ‘Greenmantle’; series. He died aged 43 from blood poisoning, the result of a botched dental operation.
Text: EXTRACT FROM THE LOG BOOK OF ST NICHOLAS CHURCH, BRUSHFORD (Contributor: Mark Lutyens)
Also Cited InOrbach, J. and Pevsner, N. (2014) Somerset: South and West. The Buildings of England. New Haven: Yale University Press.
Pevsner, N. (1958) South and West Somerset. The Buildings of England. Harmondsworth: Penguin