Guisborough St Nicholas

A Perpendicular church built at the end of the 15th century and restored to glory by Temple Moore.

Like so many churches in Yorkshire, St Nicholas' was rebuilt in the 18th century. Moore was drafted in to restore the medieval chancel, only part of which had survived intact, so that today's chancel is part-original, part-restoration. His work cost the then rather lavish sum of £6,389.

Moore was also responsible for new tracery, roofs and buttresses, the parapets on the aisles, and the stair turret at the north end. He moved an old window from the east of the chancel to the south of the tower, and had a matching new one made for the north.

The Perpendicular was a style of architecture which represented the third stage of English gothic. It became prevalent during the 15th and 16th centuries. It was characterised by vertical tracery in large windows. The more hardline members of the ecclesiological movement regarded the Perpendicular with distrust. For them the “true” gothic belonged to the second stage, the “Middle Pointed” or “Decorated” style which was prevalent from the late 13th to the mid 14th century.

Nearby Hutton Hall is a reminder that the Gothic Revival wasn't restricted to church-building. This fantastical creation, all pointy turrets and mullioned windows, was designed by Alfred Waterhouse for Sir Joseph Whitwell Pease in 1866–67. Pease came from a prominent family of Quaker merchants and industrialists. He was a Liberal MP from 1865 to 1903. Such was Pease's influence that at one time Hutton Hall had its own railway station on the Middlesbrough–Guisborough branch line!