I worked in Newcastle for more than 15 years and for some of that time went past this church twice a day on my way to and from the railway station, but never bothered to take a look inside. On a recent visit to Newcastle, however, I did take the opportunity to have a look.
"The old church of St. John is believed to date from c.1287. It has a low square time-worn tower, standing amongst green trees. Gray calls it "a pretty little church, commended by an arch-prelate of this kingdom because it resembled much a cross". And a pretty little church it is, its quiet simplicity rendered more charming still by the huge piles of modern buildings which surround and overtop it on three sides. It has no pretension to architectural beauty; there is nothing grand about it; its tower, as we have said, is low and square, with little pinnacles at the corners; its windows have flattened arched tops, far from elegant in design but there is something about it which makes it pleasing. Perhaps it is that it recalls to our mind some little country church, and that its aspect is suggestive of green trees and sunny pastures and quiet sylvan delights, amongst all the turmoil and bustle of the busy streets which run past it."
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