Church Monuments Society


Report of Annual Meeting at St Olave’s Hart Street

By CMS in CMS news, Events

This year’s annual meeting was quite an event. St Olave’s Hart Street is one of London’s few surviving medieval churches, though much of the current building dates from post-war restoration. It was Samuel Pepys’ home church, and he and his wife Elizabeth are buried there. Here is our vice-president Julian Litten


talking about the monument to Elizabeth which Pepys commissioned from the sculptor John Bushnell in the new Italianate Baroque style. Her portrait bust is carved so that it looks towards the Navy Office pew where her husband sat.


Julian gave us an overview of Bushnell’s chequered career and speculated why Pepys would have commissioned this rather unreliable character. Was it snobbery (Bushnell had had royal commissions) – or was it that he was new, comparatively cheap and up with the new fashionable styles?

And here is Jon Bayliss


reading the notes which he and Derrick Chivers assembled on the brasses in the church (see below for the detailed notes);

and here is the former President, Jean Wilson,


talking us round the other monuments. (A link to Jean’s notes is also at the bottom of this page. )

Before all that, we had the AGM. Mark Downing has been elected as our new President. Mark has for many years been our Events Organiser, so we have another vacancy to fill – and we really need another journal editor to help Jonathan Trigg. Volunteers, anyone?

All the other officers were confirmed in their posts. Derrick Chivers and Adam White have come to the end of their term as members of Council and get a well-earned rest. They are replaced by Moira Gittos and Roger Bowdler, both long-standing members and experts (and both speakers at our Hereford symposium earlier this month).

We had a preview of the current Journal (technically 2017 but well worth the wait). More details of that here. We also unveiled the result of the photograph competition. Kris Lockyear was the winner, for a stunning photo of the hands on the monument of Sir Richard Knightley and Jane Skennard at Fawsley, Northants.

fawsley hands winning edit small

The winning entry!

Next year’s annual meeting will be even better than this year. To celebrate our 40th birthday, we are planning a day of free lectures at the St Albans Centre in Holborn, on 21 September. Put the date in your diary now.

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