Church Monuments receive national award and inspire community arts festival

9th June, 2017

The Montagu Monuments at St Edmund’s Church will receive a National award from the Church Monuments Society in recognition of their excellent guidebook.  The church will also host a series of community events to celebrate and raise money for these world class treasures on 15-19 June 2017.

The Monuments are four 18th and early 19th century memorial sculptures, including acclaimed works by Louis-Francois Roubiliac, that take pride of place in the modest setting of St Edmund’s Church in Warkton, Northamptonshire.

Following a year-long restoration by St Edmund’s Parochial Church Council (PCC), the Buccleuch Living Heritage Trust (BLHT) and The Prince’s Regeneration Trust (PRT), the marble statues were unveiled in 2015 having been returned to their original magnificent glory. The monuments, commemorating the Montagus of Boughton House, ancestors of the Duke of Buccleuch, are available for viewing on Thursdays until the end of July and throughout August Monday to Saturday.

The award-winning guidebook includes input from experts in the field of art, history, and conservation.  It also includes extracts from poetry and prose written by school children from Hawthorn School and people from the local community.

Anne-Marie Sandos, Education Officer for the Montagu Monuments, said: “We want all visitors to the Montagu Monuments to come away with a real sense of their historical and artistic significance.

“As such, we have taken great pride in creating our guidebook and to be recognised by the Church Monuments Society is a lovely honour.”

“We look forward to the presentation and the festivities surrounding the community arts festival this month, and we hope we can raise a fine sum for the ongoing upkeep of these wonderful monuments we’re so lucky to have here in the heart of Northamptonshire.”

A prize-giving ceremony will take place on Saturday 17 June 2017 2pm–4pm and will include a short presentation on the work of Roubiliac by Dr Clive Easter who will also present the prize on behalf of the Church Monuments Society.  This will be open to the public and all are welcome to attend.

The prize giving event is part of a community arts festival to raise funds for the upkeep of the monuments supported by debbie&andrew ‘bangers and cash’ micro-sponsorship and the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The festival starts on Thursday 15 June 2015 with free guided tours of the Monuments 10am-12noon, 3:30pm-5:30pm.  This is followed by an Evening of Song provided by local choirs ‘Songbirds’ and ‘Melody’ and an organ recital from Rev. Graham Bell. Tickets are £10.  In addition to the Guidebook prize giving on Saturday, there is a very special workshop with local artist Lyn Hewitson. 10am-12noon with tickets £15.

An afternoon of family fun is planned on Sunday 18 June 2017 1pm-3pm with ‘Steam, Sausages and Spoken Word’.  The event is a BBQ for the local community with the added attractions of a spoken word tent and steam engines.  The event is free although food will be charged.  The festival finishes on Monday 19 June with a talk from Alan Frost ‘Architect by Royal Appointment’ recipient of the LVO for his services to restore Windsor Castle.  This renowned architect also worked on the project to restore the Montagu Monuments.

For more information about the arts festival or to book your ticket visit. or contact or telephone 07909254598.