The old medieval chancel was rebuilt in its current form between 1866 and 1868 to the designs of Henry Woodyer. Woodyer used a 14th century grand Decorated Gothic style in the design and was influenced by the Arts and Crafts movement.
The rebuilding of the chancel and all its fittings were commissioned by William Henry Forman in memory of Anne Moore, his sister-in-law, who had been buried in the Forman Chapel of St George’s Minster, Doncaster in 1866. W.H. Forman lived at Pippbrook, Dorking; his family came from Doncaster and had made their money from a Welsh ironworks.
The consecration service took place on 30 April 1868.
W.H. Forman funded the rebuilding of the Chancel between 1866 and 1868. He also paid for all the fittings including the reredos, alter, crucifix, seven sanctuary lamps, alter candlesticks, the two great standing candlesticks and the stained glass supplied by William Wailes of Newcastle.
The recently restored and gilded reredos has a central panel of English alabaster into which a gilt brass crucifix is placed during services. The four carved stone heads are of the Gospel writers.To either side are carved stone panels, one with figures of angels and the other with saints led by Edward the Confessor and St Alban, all looking towards the central cross.
The east window contains scenes from the Resurrection and the Passion, the north-east and south-east windows show the life of St. Martin of Tours, and the remaining windows have standing figures of the Apostles above scenes from the Acts of the Apostles - more details can be found below.
The organ was built by Elliott and Hill and was first installed in 1831. When the new chancel was finished in 1868 it was reconstructed in its present position by J.W. Walker, with the organ case decorated to Woodyer’s design. Further alterations were made in 1894 and major changes, including the new organ case at the east end of the north aisle, were completed in 1933.
There were further tonal improvements made in 1986. The organ console was moved to the south aisle facing the chancel in 1950 and then moved to its present position in the chancel 2002.
The Chancel windows were all made by William Wailes of Newcastle upon Tyne in 1867. They were commissioned, together with the rebuilding of the chancel and all its fittings by William Henry Forman in memory of Anne Moore, his sister-in-law. The glass in the Forman Chapel in Doncaster was made in the late 1850s and has many similarities with what is here.
East window: Five lights and tracery, the subject being Christ’s Passion. The first light shows the Virgin and St John, the second the three Marys, the centre light the Angel of the Resurrection, the fourth St John and the fifth Noli me tangere (Mary recognising Jesus after the Resurrection). Below these figures are scenes from the story of Holy Week, starting on the left with Christ’s entry into Jerusalem, then the agony in the garden, Christ carrying his cross in the centre, then Judas’s kiss and finally Christ before Pilate. In the tracery at the top of the arch is the Lamb with a cross, four angels below and two more to either side holding the symbols of the Passion, below again are the signs of the Evangelists and two heraldic shields, probably for Forman and Moore.
Details of the south windows below are numbered from the east end (from the alter). All are made up of three lights and tracery:
Details of the North windows below are numbered from the east end (from the alter). All are made up of three lights and tracery: