It was, no doubt, because the Duke of Richmond was so pleased with what Scott was doing at Chichester, that in 1864, as patron of the living of Boxgrove Priory, he commissioned Sir George Gilbert Scott to take over the restoration of the Priory which is close to Goodwood. Again Scott succeeded another friend, William White, who had been his former assistant and a supporter in the delegation to Palmerston, but White was establishing a reputation for new churches rather than restorations and Boxgrove had some awkward structural problems. It is only a fragment of the pre-reformation church but Scott was so impressed with the design of the chancel arcades, with their pairs of arches grouped under large semi-circular arches, that twelve years later he reproduced this feature in Fulney Church, near Spalding in Lincolnshire. For the restoration of Boxgrove, Scott employed John Chapple as his Clerk of Works for the first time. Scott was no doubt impressed with Chapple’s engineering background, having worked for Brunel, particularly as one of his main tasks was to straighten a leaning wall and rebuild flying buttresses. Scott also provided a new west wall, a timber pulpit and re-flooring. Boxgrove was the type of restoration that Scott could have enjoyed inspecting while the exacting work was going on at Chichester. Two years after his main restoration of the church was completed in 1865, Sir George Gilbert Scott replaced White’s reredos.
Fisher, G., Stamp, G. and Heseltine, J., (eds), The Scott Family, Catalogue of the Drawings Collection of the Royal Institute of British Architects (Avebury Publishing, Amersham, 1981), 22.
Highnett, H. W. G., Boxgrove Priory (Beric Tempest and Co. Ltd, St Ives, 1979), p. 16.
Cole, D., The Work of Sir Gilbert Scott (The Architectural Press, London, 1980), pp. 134, 160.
Hertfordshire Advertiser, 12 February 1887, p. 5.
Beckett, Sir E., Bart., St Alban’s Cathedral and its Restoration (Randall, St Alban’s, 1885), p. 41.