Heart of Albion










Project Gargoyle and LARC Project

Project Gargoyle is a voluntary scheme set up in 2009 to photograph all the figural carvings in Leicestershire and Rutland churches. The photographs and associated information form part of the Leicestershire County Council's Historic Buildings, Sites and Monuments Record.

If you're not sure what a figural carving might be you should get the drift from the instructions to the photographers: 'If it's got eyes, shoot it.'

About 300 churches in Leicestershire have figural carvings – some with only a few and some with very many. At this stage we do not know how many figurative medieval carvings here are in the two counties, but a best guess is about 6,000. In addition the Project is also recording a representative selection of the nineteenth century Gothic Revival carvings. The comparatively small number of Anglo-Saxon and Romanesque (or 'Norman') carvings have also been recorded, but these sculptures are part of two major academic studies.

The Leicestershire and Rutland Carvings Project – or LARC Project for short – was inaugurated in 2016 and aims to develop a database to enable those photographs to be accessible via the Web for further study. More details on the LARC Project's web site: larcproject.uk. Note that in 2021 an entirely different LAARC Project was started.

Three videos provide more information about Project Gargoyle and discuss a selection of the carvings of Leicestershire and Rutland:

Four free-to-download PDFs relate to the aims of Project Gargoyle:

Project Gargoyle newsletters

Five newsletters can be downloaded as PDFs. These contain the latest information about Project Gargoyle and the LARC Project together with short articles providing background information for selected carvings.

Who is running Project Gargoyle?

Project Gargoyle was set up by an advisory committee which included representatives from relevant departments of Leicestershire County Council, the diocesan archaeologist, representatives of Leicestershire Fieldworkers, a committee member of the Leicestershire Archaeological and Historical Society and an art history graduate.

Currently Project Gargoyle is run by Bob Trubshaw. He co-ordinates the allocation of churches to photographers, prepares the photographs for submission to the Historic Environment Record, and also gives talks about Leicestershire's medieval carvings.

Bob Trubshaw's contact details (updated June 2022):-
Syringa Cottage, Chapel Street, Orston, Nottingham, NG13 9NL
phone 01949 850631
email bobtrubs@indigogroup.co.uk

Project Gargoyle has three main phases:

Phase One

The pilot phase took place during 2009.

Phase Two

The main survey phase where Heritage Wardens and volunteers survey and record all the churches in Leicestershire and Rutland. This started in February 2010 and is ongoing.

Leicestershire County Ccouncil's staff are also incorporating the images and information into the Historic Buildings, Sites and Monuments Record database.

A limited number of photographs taken for Project Gargoyle can be accessed via Heritage England's Heritage Gateway.




Barrow upon Soar

Breedon on the Hill





Frisby on the Wreake

Long Whatton

Newbold Verdon

Peatling Magna






Thorpe Langton


Tilton on the Hill

Documents relating to Phase Two of Project Gargoyle

Project Gargoyle village by village (PDF)

Project Gargoyle photography guide (PDF)

Project Gargoyle copyright assignment and consent form (PDF)

Project Gargoyle record sheet master (Excel spreadsheet)

Project Gargoyle 'dummy' record sheet (Excel spreadsheet)

Gargoyle Hunting Guide (PDF)


Phase Three LARC Project

LARC Project aims to make the photographs and associated details available via the Web. This in turn will enable the more detailed cataloguing of each carving, enabling stylistic comparsions and searching by 'motifs'. This will be carried out by volunteers working from home; the timing for this is currently open-ended.

Until July 2016 this was referred to as 'Phase Three' of Project Gargoyle. However it is now known as the 'LARC Project' – an abbreviation of 'Leicestershire and Rutland Carvings Project'.

The LARC Project has received sufficient funding to allow the development of a 'beta' database.

More details on the LARC Project's web site: larcproject.uk.

Note that in 2021 an entirely different LAARC Project was started.


For more information about Project Gargoyle and the LARC Project please email Bob Trubshaw.



If you would like to receive an email when Heart of Albion publish new titles then
please email with the subject line 'Join HOAP update list'.
Let us know if you have specific interests e.g. local history; folklore; mythology.
Heart of Albion Press does not sell or share any information you send.
New title emails are typically sent out every 2 to 3 months.


WWW Heart of Albion only

Need help? Just email us!

This website does not gather or store any visitor information.

Heart of Albion hopes that this site is accessible to all visitors.
However please email any suggestions for improvement.

www.hoap.co.uk - albion@indigogroup.co.uk
Heart of Albion Press
Syringa Cottage, Chapel Street, Orston, Nottingham, NG13 9NL
telephone 01949 850631