Extracts from the book on the history of the church by David Garnsworthy are as follows:
“King Athelston gave the land at Ide to the Cathedral Church in approximately 932AD”. It is thought that when Ide was a number of hamlets that the church was positioned roughly halfway between Westown and the bottom of the village near the village green.
Leofric, the first Bishop of Exeter, set up the first church in Ide some time after 1057AD and it was one of the first Churches he built in his new Diocese,
although there are no records stating this. The next church which followed was built during the period 1253 to 1291AD. All that remains of this second church is the base of the tower. The third Parish Church was really an enlargement of the second, with work being carried out about 1450-1500AD. The fourth and existing church was built for £900 and the gallery for £87.
In 1907 the screen was set up and the pulpit placed in front of it, where it remains today. The Rood Cross was given in memory of William Braddon who served the Church faithfully. In 1923 the box pews in the central portion were removed and replaced with the present oak ones. The box pews are unique in that they have an historical interest as there are very few of this style, left in the country.
Saint Ida:- The church is dedicated to Saint Ida of Herzfeld in Germany. Herzfeld, which in Saxon times, was called Hirutveld (“Hart’s field”), is a village now of some 3300 people since 1969, a part of the Community of Lippetal, situated in Westfalia (West Saxony), Ida (in German pronounced Eda) , was born in Ripuaria, an area at the lower Rhine around Cologne. She married in 786 the nephew of Duke Widukind, the young Saxon Count Egbert.
Returning with her husband to their home they spent some nights in a field at Hirutveld. One night in her dreams, an Angel told Ida she was to build a church at Herzfeld in West Germany which she did. After her husband’s death she lived in the church and provided food for the poor from the wealth of her estates. She died about 672 and was buried in the church. She was canonized in 980 on 26th November. Her Saint’s day is September 4th. She is always depicted as holding a church in her hand and a stag by her side. Every year the people of Hertzfeld hold a week long celebration of her with various events taking place every evening with a big occasion on the Saturday when they carry a Reliquerry, with her remains in it, through the streets ending with a service in church.
The first recorded bells in the tower was in 1553AD and they were recast in 1693 at a cost of £6-3s-6d (£6-17p), all very reasonable before the days of inflation and value added tax. Over the years various repairs and the recasting of the tenor bell had taken place until about 1880.
A new set of bells in 1880 cost £240-15s-8d . They were purchased from Warner and Co, of London and installed by Messrs Hooper and Stokes of Woodbury.
Repairs and general maintenance has been carried out ever since with a general overhaul in 1975 with new bearings. The clapper fell out of the tenor bell in 1980 and had to be taken away to be recast into the bell. In 2003, after 28 years, it has been decided to give them a major overhaul with retuneing as well.
The bells are housed in the Tower, a structure which dates back to the 13th Century. There are six bells in varying sizes from 208 kg to 418kg, the Tenor being the heaviest, set in a wooden frame with just enough room to move. Each bell is on a set of bearings, and there is a big wheel around which is the rope which goes through a series of holes down to the ground floor from where they are rung. To visit the bell chamber involves climbing a spiral staircase in the turret on the side of the Tower. There is very restricted space and the craftsmanship involved in the peal of bells, the builder who built the Tower, the bell hanger and his carpenters, the bell founder who, in the early days, set up his furnace, moulded and cast the bells in such a way as to produce a predetermined note. Let us not forget the Blacksmith who forged the clappers to strike the bell, the straps and bolts by which they are held.Ringing practice takes place every Tuesday evening at 7-30pm. A dedicated band of ringers meets then and they also ring the bells for the morning service on Sundays. For more details contact the Captain - Simon Tucker on 01392 215237
In the early nineties the PCC at that time, decided that there would be no more burials in the churchyard as it was full. An application was made to do this was agreed and eventually it was passed by the Privy Council. Teignbridge District Council now have the responsibility of keeping the grass cut, the hedges trimmed and all boundary fences repaired. Internment of Ashes is still permitted in the allocated portions of the Churchyard.
Records of the church have been deposited with the Devon Record Office, Great Moor House, Sowton Estate. Exeter. Births, Marriages and Death registers prior to 2009 and documents such as Closing of the Churchyard, Sale of the Vicarage, Bell Restoration and many more to numerous to mention.
The history of the church is contained in a book which is available from the Church at £2.00 or the contact page same price plus postage.
The village of Ide is situated in the lovely Alphin Brook valley, some two and a half miles from the centre of Exeter. Comprising a population of about 600. Divided from the city by the A30 trunk road to Okehampton and Cornwall. It has a single main street which leads on to Dunchideock. In 1950 an estate was built at the back of the street and can be approached on foot, via the Mill Path just below the school or by road from the top of the village. There is a village web site link
Transport there is a daily bus service to the village from the Exeter Bus Station
check with them for times.