Saint Helier Church

St. Helier Church (known as the Town Church) is the oldest building in Jersey’s principal town and for many centuries stood at the water’s edge. St.Helier, a hermit, lived on an offshore rock now attached to Elizabeth Castle in the bay and was beheaded by the Vikings in 555 A.D. The senior Anglican church in the Island, the Dean of Jersey is its Rector, and it was recently extensively renovated.

The church contains one Bosdet window, and possibly parts of another as yet unverified.

The Annunciation

A double window. The left-hand light shows the Archangel Gabriel in profile, standing on a cloud beneath an architectural canopy and holding a Madonna lily in his left hand. The right-hand light depicts the Virgin Mary in three-quarter profile with spinning wheel and distaff. The distaff….symbolises the domestic role of women and was a common attribute of the Virgin Mary in medieval representations of the Annunciation. Mary sits beneath a Gothic canopy, hands clasped above her left breast. The dove of the Holy Ghost hovers above her head. Beneath Mary’s feet is a rich carpet and on the sill near her head stands a bowl of roses. Lower down, two angels carry scrolls bearing the memorial inscription.

This is a particularly rich and balanced composition which was originally in the vestry but was moved to its present position in 1975.

Four small lights with red roses forming part of the original composition remain atop the vestry window. The removal of the window to its present position is unfortunate, not only is it not complete having lost its top lights, it is partly obscured by the floor of the gallery above and it is overshadowed by a chestnut tree growing immediately outside the church.

  • Position: North wall of West porch
  • Biblical ref: Luke 1, vv. 26-38
  • Signature: H.T. Bosdet 1898
  • Memorial inscription: "To the Glory of God and in loving memory of John Le Masurier died August 13th 1896. Erected by his widow."

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Photo Album

See our collection of photos from this location at the photo-sharing website Flickr.