The hour is read from the shadow cast by the gnomon, the dial is engraved to local time, and reads approximately one hour slow during British Summer time.
Lines of declination cross the face of the dial from left to right. This detail, seen on the right from near the top of the dial face, shows the winter month labelling of the lines of declination.
A protrusion under the gnomon as seen in its shadow follows these lines, indicating the month and sign of the zodiac.
Names of various places in the world are arranged around the gnomon near to the top of the dial. As the shadow passes over a name, it indicates noon at that particular location.
The Latin engraving at the top of the dial translates as "Cultivate an enquiring mind", and on the corbels, "Like a shadow, so passes life".
Names of two contemporary church wardens - William Lee and Thomas Froggat - can be seen near the top.