Norwich Mediaeval City Churches

All Saints south side from All Saints Green [B100] 1931-00-00
All Saints south side from All Saints Green [2183] 1938-03-19
All Saints tower from Westlegate [3289] 1939-10-22
All Saints interior view east [1864] 1937-08-09
Nave arcade 16c. Chancel 14c.
All Saints 15c font [1872] 1937-08-12
Octagonal. Apostles and Evangelists around the bowl and other saints around the shaft. Since transferred to the rebuilt St Julian's church.
St Andrew's north side [0120] 1934-06-15
St Andrew's chancel from St Andrew's Hill [2281] 1938-04-10
Early 16c.
St Andrew's tower from Bridewell Alley [2282] 1938-04-10
96 feet. Built 1478 prior to rest of church.
St Andrew's south porch [6702] 1991-07-07
St Andrew's east end armorial shields [2123] 1938-03-06
Base course of fine shields at east end of chancel. Probably a century older than the church.
St Andrew's east end armorial shields [2124] 1938-03-06
St Andrew's interior view east [1844] 1937-08-07
St Andrew's interior view east [1845] 1937-08-07
St Andrew's tie beam roof and N clerestory [1846] 1937-08-07
Roof early 16c.
St Andrew's modern font and Jacobean cover [1878] 1937-08-14
Cover 1637.
St Andrew's Robert Garsett mural monument [4441] 1956-05-24
Robert Garsett died 18th March 1611.
St Andrew's Robert Suckling mural monument [1877] 1937-08-14
St Andrew's Sir John Suckling tomb [1876] 1937-08-14
John Suckling died 1613, and wife.
St Augustine's from SE [1921] 1937-08-24
From St Augustine's St.
St Augustine's tower from Gildencroft [1920] 1937-08-24
1680's red brick replacing former tower that collapsed 1677.
St Augustine's interior view east [1915] 1937-08-24
16c arcade.
St Augustine's 15c font [1916] 1937-08-24
St Augustine's Elisha de Hague tablet [1918] 1937-08-24
Elisha de Hague, Town Clerk of Norwich, died 11th July 1792 aged 74.
St Augustine's Matthew Brettingham tablet [1917] 1937-08-24
Matthew Brettingham, architect of Norwich, died 19th August 1769 aged 70.
St Augustine's Thomas Clabburn tablet [1919] 1937-08-24
Thomas Clabburn, master weaver, died 31st March 1858 aged 70.
St Bartholomew's Ber St nave blocked window [2980] 1939-05-18
A few yards south along the street from the site of St Michael at Thorn a portion of St Bartholomew's tower stands preserved among a block of new dwellings. Secularised after the Reformation, the church was then adapted for other uses, and as late as the 1930s most of the nave and part of the chancel remained, largely hidden from view by slaughterhouses and other buildings. Brought to light only in recent years, it offers slight compensation for the loss of St Michael.
St Bartholomew's Ber St nave south wall [1841] 1937-08-07
Warehouse at rear of 82 Ber St, incorporating remains of St Bartholomew's church.
St Bartholomew's Ber St partial demolition [2981] 1939-05-18
Desecrated at the time of the Dissolution. Further parts demolished 1939.
Ber St 82 rear St Bartholomew's gabled wall [2979] 1939-05-18
West side of gabled wall dividing nave from chancel.
St Bartholomew's Ber St south doorway arch [4906] 1965-05-01
St Bartholomew's Ber St west tower S wall [4907] 1965-05-01
Interior of south wall.
St Bartholomew's Ber St west tower from SW [6256] 1983-04-15
St Benedict's south side from church alley [0140] 1934-06-28
St Benedict's church was another sad loss caused by that April raid, only its round Norman tower now surviving to mark the site. The church was not a large one. As well as the tower with its octagonal 14c belfry, it consisted of a clerestoried nave with north aisle, north and south porches and a chancel. All the external walls except for those of the tower and south porch had been faced with plaster. The roof was of slate.
Before the war the tower contained two bells, although when L'Estrange made his survey in 1874 there were three, inscribed:
(1) John Brend made me 1636.
(2) Elias Brend made me 1659 E.T. E.S.
St Benedict's interior view west [2196] 1938-03-23
The body of the church exhibited several styles, but that of the Perpendicular period predominated. The arcading between aisle and nave had been altered at some time during the 19c by the substitution of iron posts for two of its three pillars.
St Benedict's chancel and Tudor arch [2195] 1938-03-23
A single wide four-centred arch, bent towards the south, separated aisle from chancel.
St Benedict's interior view SE [2197] 1938-03-23
The supporting timbers of the nave roof were open to view, but the chancel had a ceiled semicircular vault; the arch dividing it from the nave was supported by angels.
St Benedict's 15c font [2198] 1938-03-23
The majority of the interior fittings were modern, but there was a fine (though mutilated) stone font of the 15c, which has standing figures around the stem and a seated one within each of the eight panels of the bowl.
St Benedict's air raid damage [3622] 1946-04-19
During the raids the south wall of the church collapsed, and with it the roof, leaving only the tower with its belfry (damaged but since repaired), the north aisle with its arcading to the nave, the north wall of the chancel, the north porch and the font; the latter was later removed for installation elsewhere.
Archaeological excavations were carried out here in 1972, when four mediaeval building periods were identified, along with traces of earlier religious uses of the site. The first church, possibly dating from late in the 11c, was a simple one of nave and small apsidal chancel only. This was followed about a century later by the building of a tower and enlargement of the chancel, which was then made square-ended. In the third building phase all but the tower was demolished, to be replaced, perhaps early in the 14c, by a slightly larger church having nave and chancel of equal width. Finally, during the 15c the church was again rebuilt, to take on the form that survived up to 1942.
That the north aisle had been built by 1484 is indicated by the historian Francis Blomefield, who stated that in that year "William King was buried in the Church, and made, and glazed a new Window in the North Isle". Certain modifications carried out during succeeding centuries, particularly during Victoria's reign, involved extensive restoration, when much of the east wall was rebuilt and the exterior completely refaced. Sillett's view of the north side of the church, made in 1828, shows that the nave and aisle roofs were then leaded and the chancel tiled; the slates were therefore put on after this time.
Detailed reports by Alan Carter and others on excavations which have taken place both here and elsewhere in the district will be found in the pages of Norfolk Archaeology and East Anglian Archaeology, from which the above notes have been drawn.
St Clement's from NE [B119] 1931-00-00
Mainly Perpendicular.
St Clement's north side from Magdalen St [0171] 1934-07-17
St Clement's interior view east [1865] 1937-08-11
A great span of over 29 feet.
St Clement's 16c font [1866] 1937-08-11
St Clement's Matthew Parker parents tomb [2263] 1938-04-07
Parents of Matthew Parker, Archbishop of Canterbury 1559-75, who resided in this parish.
St Crowche's stone corbel St Andrew St [5123] 1967-02-25
This church, dedicated in honour of the Invention of the Holy Cross, became redundant at the time of the Reformation. It stood across what is now the bottom of Exchange St, and pedestrians had to go round its churchyard to get into St Andrew's. A tavern with the sign of the "Hole in the Wall" was later built partly on the east end. Nothing now remains, but a mediaeval stone corbel set in a flint wall off the north side of St Andrew's St is believed to have come from this church.
St Edmund's from west [3186] 1939-07-30
St Edmund's Church recently had its fabric restored after a long period of redundancy and neglect.
St Edmund's tower from NW [B133] 1931-00-00
St Edmund's north side from Fishergate [2974] 1939-05-13
St Edmund's south side from Quayside [7812] 2001-04-01
St Edmund's tower south side [0753] 1935-09-12
From Hansard Lane.
St Edmund's interior view east [2223] 1938-03-30
16c arcading.
St Edmund's interior view west [2222] 1938-03-30
Two arcade piers have small arches cut through them.
St Edmund's roof and boss [2225] 1938-03-30
Original open timber roof with large central wooden boss.
St Etheldreda's SE corner from King St [B128] 1931-00-00
St Etheldreda's from Mariners Lane [2192] 1938-03-21
View from north-west.
St Etheldreda's tower south side King St [0161] 1934-07-08
Norman round tower with octagonal top.
St Etheldreda's south side from King St [4764] 1964-05-09
St Etheldreda's nave Norman stringcourse [6259] 1983-04-28
Norman stringcourse on north side of nave. Possibly the blocked arch of the original north doorway.
St Etheldreda's Norman south doorway [1923] 1937-08-25
St Etheldreda's interior view east [1852] 1937-08-07
Comparison with Sillett's view drawn in 1828 shows the present 14c style east window to be a modern replacement..
St Etheldreda's 15c font [2228] 1938-03-30
With panelled bowl.
St Etheldreda's William Johnson monument [2227] 1938-03-30
William Johnson, Alderman of Norwich, died 1611.
St George Colegate from SE [6637] 1990-09-03
St George Colegate from SW [B120] 1931-00-00
St George Colegate tower from north [1550] 1937-05-03
St George Colegate tower from SW [2265] 1938-04-07
94 feet.
St George Colegate south doorway spandrels [2264] 1938-04-07
Spandrels show the Annunciation and St George being girded with armour by Angels.
St George Colegate interior view east [2216] 1938-03-30
St George Colegate interior view west [2217] 1938-03-30
St George Colegate altar and reredos [2219] 1938-03-30
18c reredos.
St George Colegate John Crome memorial [2218] 1938-03-30
John Crome, founder of Norwich school of painters, died 22nd April 1821.
St George Colegate John Herring monument [2221] 1938-03-30
John Herring, Mayor of Norwich 1799, died 22nd September 1810.
St George Colegate Robert Jannys tomb [4736] 1963-07-20
Robert Jannys, Mayor of Norwich 1517 and 1524, died 1530. Terracotta altar tomb
St George Tombland south side from Tombland [2268] 1938-04-07
"W tower, N and S porch, nave, N and S aisles, chancel and chancel chapel. The tower has nice sound holes. Late 15c S porch, groined and with parvise over. Typical 13c hexagonal Purbeck font with very nice 17c cover. Under the tomb of John Symonds 1609 there is a marble top which looks like a dole table. Clerestory windows to whole of nave and chancel. Very nice 17c pulpit with back board and canopy, iron-bound chest, mace and sword stand, and Royal Arms over tower arch, but too dark to make out." (H.Munro Cautley F.S.A. A.R.I.B.A. in Norfolk Churches, 1949).
"East of Princes St and south-west corner of Tombland. Square west tower, a clock and 5 bells, nave with aisles, Chancel and south porch. Chiefly in the Perpendicular style, slight evidences of earlier work. The tower was erected by the parishioners in 1445. The clock was given by George Maltby in 1786. There is also a sanctus bell. The clerestory of brick, built with dark grey headers and red stretchers. Several monuments to city worthies, including one to the founder of the Great Hospital. A Jacobean pulpit and sounding-board. The font has a Jacobean cover. The Rev W.Bridge was ejected from the incumbency of this parish for refusing to read the Book of Sports. He afterwards became pastor of the Old Meeting House. Registers from 1538." (Claude J.W.Messent A.R.I.B.A. in Parish Churches of Norfolk and Norwich, 1936).
"The five arches of the nave are conspicuous in the irregular arrangement of their columns, which are neither opposite nor equal in number. The shafts are octagonal, the capitals exhibiting some bold cutting; whilst the moulding around the arches forms a succession of simple rectangular recesses. It is considered that the western arch of the south arcade was reformed in the fifteenth century when the present tower was erected. The roof of the nave, with its hand-corbels, has been rebuilt in Perpendicular times; when a flatter roof of the period was substituted for the old high-pitched Decorated one, the rake of which is shown by the stone-string on the tower. On the spandrels shields and scrolls are painted." (Edward A.Tillet in St George Tombland, Norwich, Past and Present, 1891).
St George Tombland south side from Tombland [B131] 1931-00-00
St George Tombland tower and south porch [2210] 1938-03-26
Tower built 1445.
St George Tombland interior view east [1853] 1937-08-07
17c pulpit with backboard and canopy.
St George Tombland 13c font and 17c cover [1879] 1937-08-14
Purbeck font.
St Giles' east side from St Giles' St [B114] 1931-00-00
St Giles' east side from St Giles' St [B199] 1931-00-00
St Giles' tower north side from Cow Hill [0152] 1934-07-04
St Giles' tower from SE [0741] 1935-08-26
St Giles' tower from SE [2880] 1939-02-23
Dominating St Giles' Plain, as the western end of Bethel St is known, is the magnificent tower of St Giles' church. Battlemented and crowned with a small wooden bell-cot, it is quite the tallest of the city's church towers, for it is over 112 feet high, and the ground on which it stands is some 85 feet above sea level. In 1549 it was selected as a suitable site for a cresset or fire beacon (the old wrought-iron basket is still carefully preserved in the church). In more recent times its favourable position rendered it convenient for semaphore signalling practice by soldiers from Britannia Barracks.
St Giles' tower from SE during restoration [4377] 1955-09-08
Tower restored 1955.
St Giles' tower floodlit from Cleveland Rd [5736] 1977-03-12
St Giles' churchyard from south [B084] 1931-00-00
St Giles' chancel south side [6643] 1990-09-26
The present chancel is modern, built in 1866. The original one was demolished by Dean Gardiner in 1581, when, it is said, a bell was purchased out of part of the money received from the sale of the old materials.
St Giles' south porch [1858] 1937-08-07
The porch is very fine and compares favourably with any other in Norwich. It is of two storeys, with fan tracery vaulting. The front, supported by diagonal buttresses, is of freestone, and the parapet and cornice are enriched with carving reproducing a series of crowns above the ancient form of the letter "G".
St Giles' south porch [2882] 1939-02-26
Fine parapet and cornice.
St Giles' bells in churchyard after tuning [B239] 1932-04-00
St Giles' is particularly noted for its peal of eight bells, which I was able to photograph when they were lying in the churchyard in April 1932, before being rehung. They had been taken down for retuning when the bell frame was rebuilt; the original beams having been ravaged by the deathwatch beetle. It was indeed fortunate that they did not come crashing to the ground when an earth tremor shook the region a year earlier.
According to John L'Estrange, the three largest bells were the original peal put up shortly after the tower was built; they were cast by Richard Baxter, who lived in Norwich about 1410-20. The fourth bell was by William Brend, whose foundry was on All Saints' Green. The fifth was one of Richard Brasyer's of Norwich; the sixth has no inscription but was added about 1690, while the two trebles were added by subscription in 1738 and were cast by Thomas Newman of Norwich.
St Giles' bells in churchyard after tuning [B240] 1932-04-00
St Giles' interior view east [1856] 1937-08-07
Inside the church are a number of monuments, many dating from the 18c, but of particular interest is a brass to Robert Baxter, Sheriff of Norwich in 1418, and his wife. It was etched and published by John Sell Cotman in his book The Sepulchral Brasses of Norfolk and Suffolk.
Among the mural monuments are two to the Churchman family, who lived in the nearby mansion which bears their name.
St Giles' interior view west [1857] 1937-08-07
St Giles' font [2233] 1938-03-30
From the east.
St Giles' brazier beacon formerly on tower [0149] 1934-07-02
Iron beacon grate.
St Gregory's south side from Pottergate [B121] 1931-00-00
St Gregory's church, lying between Charing Cross and Pottergate, has come on happier times. Following extensive restoration its use as a costume museum was considered and eventually vetoed, since when it has been taken over by the Friends of St Gregory's as a music and drama centre.
St Gregory's south side from Pottergate [1505] 1937-03-25
St Gregory's east end from Strangers Hall [4339] 1955-07-30
St Gregory's processional path below altar [0624] 1935-08-06
Now a public alleyway.
St Gregory's west tower and south porch [6356] 1986-04-04
St Gregory's south porch [2303] 1938-04-12
South porch with canopied niche.
St Gregory's interior view east [1890] 1937-08-17
Nine steps up to altar to allow for processional path around church, underneath.
St Gregory's interior view west to gallery [0635] 1935-08-11
Ringers' gallery and battlemented capitals to arcade pillars.
St Gregory's 15c font and Jacobean cover [1889] 1937-08-17
St Gregory's brass eagle lectern [0636] 1935-08-11
1493 lectern.
St Gregory's George and Dragon mural [0634] 1935-08-11
West wall of north aisle depicting St George and Dragon c1450.
St Gregory's vestry door sanctuary knocker [0125] 1934-06-17
Escutcheon of 14c sanctuary knocker. Showing a wolf holding a head having a bifurcated beard, possibly St Edmund.
St Helen's tower from SW [2287] 1938-04-10
This church is now part of the Great Hospital of St Giles, and only the centre part is used for Divine Worship. The greater part of the nave and quire having been adapted for inmates. The whole is 15c.
St Helen's cloisters NW corner [2296] 1938-04-12
St Helen's cloisters SE corner [1898] 1937-08-18
St Helen's interior view SE [1891] 1937-08-18
St Helen's northern arcade of nave [1895] 1937-08-18
St Helen's south transept [1892] 1937-08-18
Where the present altar stands.
St Helen's south transept vaulted roof [1894] 1937-08-18
Groined roof of south transept with stone bosses.
St Helen's T and E Ivory pew [1893] 1937-08-18
Erected by T.William and Elizabeth Mary Ivory 1780.
St James' south side from Cowgate [B113] 1931-00-00
St James' south side from Cowgate [2266] 1938-04-07
St James' north side [3193] 1939-07-30
The tower stands in the body of the church on arches, only the west wall being solid.
St James' interior view east [1884] 1937-08-16
St James' old rood screen panels [1885] 1937-08-16
Two of the ten surviving panels from the old rood screen. They now flank the north wall of the chancel. The present rood screen is modern.
St James' 14c font [1883] 1937-08-16
Octagonal. Figures of the Apostles and Evangelists, and eight female saints.
St John Maddermarket north side [2279] 1938-04-08
Showing the raised level of the churchyard. There is supposed to have been a chancel but there is no documentary or structural evidence of this.
St John Maddermarket south side [B122] 1931-00-00
St John Maddermarket south side [2278] 1938-04-08
At the top of the tower are four figures at the angles forming pinnacles.
St John Maddermarket east window exterior [7896] 2002-07-26
"The chancel seems to have been demolished already in the 16c. Its east window must have been set back to become the east window of the church. It is a sumptuous Decorated piece of forms more fantastical than customary in Norfolk." (Pevsner)
Ancient sundial in top left hand corner.
St John Maddermarket north porch [0136] 1934-06-28
St John Maddermarket tower passage view N [0392] 1935-03-17
Tower stands over an alleyway with arches north and south.
St John Maddermarket interior view NE [3757] 1948-09-11
St John Maddermarket altar and reredos [1839] 1937-08-07
St John de Sepulchre north side from Ber St [2277] 1938-04-08
Largely 15c.
St John de Sepulchre from N [B141] 1931-00-00
St John de Sepulchre north porch [2276] 1938-04-08
Vaulted ceiling and parvise above.
St John de Sepulchre from SE [3346] 1940-03-23
St John de Sepulchre tower south side [6235] 1982-07-05
With stair turret.
St John de Sepulchre interior view east [1861] 1937-08-09
Nave 28 feet 2 inches wide with four-centred arches.
St John de Sepulchre East Anglian type font [1862] 1937-08-09
St John Timberhill south side from Ber St [2301] 1938-04-12
Roof with two modern dormers.
St John Timberhill south porch [2300] 1938-04-12
Vaulting and parvise over. The square western tower fell in 1784 and was not rebuilt.
St John Timberhill east end [2308] 1938-04-15
St John Timberhill interior view east [1863] 1937-08-09
Screen and rood beam are modern.
St Julian's south side of tower [B129] 1931-00-00
Opposite Old Barge Yard and Dragon Hall in King St is one of the two entrances to St Julian's Alley. The other "arm" of the lane is a few yards further south and skirts the east end of the churchyard before linking up with the main part to the north of the church. It now opens directly into modern Rouen Rd, but before the area was cleared it led to St Julian's St, the centre of a network of 19c terraced houses.
Many of the buildings around King St were demolished under slum clearance or other redevelopment schemes. Enemy action, however, was the cause of the destruction of St Julian's Church.
To which of the saints named Julian the church is dedicated is uncertain - the parishioners at different times seem to have adopted the one which suited their purpose best.
Ian Hannah, following Blomefield's errors called it "St Julian King and Confessor", but this is really a contraction of the title "St Julian with St Edward King and Confessor". A church of St Edward formerly stood between this one and that of St Etheldreda, the two rectories being united at some time between 1269 and 1305. After the Dissolution St Edward's fell into disuse, and although early in the 18c its ruins were still visible all traces of it have long since vanished.
Before the Second World War St Julian's consisted of an aisleless nave and chancel, north porch, south vestry and a round western tower, the latter considered to be of Saxo-Norman date. In 1940 when a visit was paid by the Norfolk and Norwich Archaeological Society, Arthur Whittingham pointed out how its walls were levelled up every foot or so instead of being coursed. Other typical features of that period included blocked circular windows to the east and west and traces of a round-headed west doorway. Although the body of the church appeared to have been rebuilt several centuries later, inspection revealed that the plan and much of the fabric remained from the earlier period. St Julian's, therefore, was probably one of the 29 new churches mentioned in Domesday as having been built in the city between 1065 and 1086.
Most of the interior fittings were of modern date, including the screen, which was made a little too long and had to be set in the chancel arch slightly askew. The original round-headed Saxon or Norman chancel arch was destroyed in about 1460, when it was replaced by one in the contemporary pointed style. At about this time, too, the finely carved bosses of the chancel ceiling were made.
The small octagonal font was of some interest. Dating from the Perpendicular period, it had suffered a certain amount of mutilation at different times. The shaft was covered with shallow panels, once probably containing figures of saints, while the eight panels of the bowls had angels holding shields. These formerly bore painted coats-of-arms, but all traces of these disappeared in 1845 when workmen scraped off numerous coats of whitewash and with them the remains of the figures around the stem.
Inside the tower was one bell inscribed AVE GRACIA PLENA DOMINUS TECUM. On its crown were three shields, the mark of the 15c bellfounder Richard Brayser.
During the early hours of Saturday morning, 27th June 1942, German raiders flew over the city causing widespread damage, mainly by fire, particularly in the St Stephen's St and Ber St area. In King St high-explosive bombs caused the destruction of St Julian's. A shapeless heap of rubble was all that was left of the tower; of the remainder of the church only the north and east walls were left standing.
Thus did it remain until nearly ten years later, when work was put in hand to clear away the rubble and rebuild the church. As much as possible of the surviving fabric was retained, in particular the north wall of the nave with its circular Norman window. A 15c font brought from the redundant All Saints' church took the place of that which had been broken beyond repair, while a Norman doorway from the neighbouring church of St Michael-at-Thorn, gutted during the same raid, replaced one of similar date, which had been sketched and etched by John Sell Cotman. This now gives access from the nave to a sacristy built on foundations, laid bare in 1906, of what was thought at the time to have been the cell of Dame Julian, the 14c anchoress or religious recluse, famous for the series of visions vouchsafed to her. Descriptions of these visions have been published in several editions under the title of Revelations of Divine Love.
St Julian's tower south side [0154] 1934-07-05
Pre-conquest round tower.
St Julian's King St from NE [0155] 1934-07-05
Norman except for modern upper part to east wall.
St Julian's Mother Julian memorial tablet [0163] 1934-07-08
Commemorating The Anchoress Julian, who lived in a cell attached to the church c1342-1430.
St Julian's interior view east [1870] 1937-08-12
Screen is modern.
St Julian's 15c font [1871] 1937-08-12
St Julian's air raid damage [3626] 1946-04-21
Partial destruction in the blitz of 27th June 1942.
St Julian's reconstruction south side [4078] 1952-07-06
St Julian's reconstruction north side [4080] 1952-07-06
Much of the original north wall and lower stages of the tower were retained in the 1952 reconstruction.
St Julian's reconstructed interior view E [4568] 1960-08-06
With Norman doorway taken from blitzed church of St Michael at Thorn.
St Julian's reconstructed from SW [4572] 1960-08-13
St Julian's reconstructed from SE [4573] 1960-08-13
St Julian's reconstructed from north [4670] 1962-06-11
St Lawrence's St Benedict's St from SE [2260] 1938-04-07
St Lawrence's tower NW from Westwick St [0133] 1934-06-17
The rebuilding of St Lawrence was completed 1472. It is said to stand on the site of an ancient quay for landing fish. Now one of three redundant churches in St Benedict's St, it was the subject of an appeal for funds to complete its restoration. Much work has been done towards safeguarding the structure, in particular the strengthening of the exterior stonework of the clerestory; some of the retaining wall on the Westwick St side of the churchyard had to be virtually rebuilt.
St Lawrence's south porch [6658] 1990-10-12
St Lawrence's west doorway arch [2261] 1938-04-07
St Lawrence's west doorway arch [6649] 1990-09-28
Left and right carvings show martyrdom of St Lawrence and King Edward.
St Lawrence's interior view east [1847] 1937-08-07
St Lawrence's rood stair turret door [1887] 1937-08-16
Linenfold pattern in panels.
St Lawrence's 15c font [1888] 1937-08-17
St Margaret's S side from St Benedict's St [2259] 1938-04-07
St Margaret's always appeared well kept; although damaged by raiders during the war it was later repaired, the tower in 1948, the remainder by 1951. In 1965, while the church was still in use as a place of worship, it was decided to take down four of the bells, of which two had come earlier from St Swithin's, and to transfer them to St Andrew's Church, Holt, to make up their peal. Two years later a new stained-glass window, the work of Michael King, was fitted into the east end of the church. Its subject, the Ascension, was described at the time of its unveiling as "a modern representation without any clearly recognisable figures, the window is a blaze of colour, which shows up all the more in the clear white light of the remainder of the church, and gives a wonderful impression of Christ ascending".
By January 1977, the church had come under the threat of redundancy. The remaining bell was transferred to Morley St Botolph, and the building was subsequently stripped of its furnishings; by 1981 it was in use as a gymnasium.
St Margaret's south porch [6639] 1990-09-03
St Margaret's vestry wall stone crucifix [6020] 1979-07-17
Mediaeval stone crucifix set in modern north vestry wall.
St Margaret's interior view east [1848] 1937-08-07
St Margaret's openings to chapel and aisle [1882] 1937-08-14
Arched openings in the nave walls leading to the eastern chapel and aisle.
St Margaret's 14c font [1881] 1937-08-14
When I visited here in 1937 to record some of its treasures the font seemed the most prominent feature. Of its three elements, the bowl displayed a circle enclosing a shield on each of its eight sides; engaged columns supported the shaft, and a tall pedestal, the sides of which were enriched with quatrefoils enclosing Tudor roses, raised it some two feet or so above the ground.
St Margaret's 15c parish chest [1849] 1937-08-07
The late 14c chest was also noteworthy; it had traceried panels greatly resembling those on a chest of similar age at Litcham.
St Martin at Oak west side from Oak St [B138] 1931-00-00
Oak street is named from the church of St Martin-at-Oak. In its churchyard formerly grew an oak tree bearing an image of Our Lady, visited with great reverence in pre-Reformation days. St Martin-at-Oak is a redundant church, whose belfry was destroyed during the war. The tower has since been taken down to the level of the nave roof and now serves as a porch. During the course of the alterations some of the stringcourse of carved stonework that had formed a base to its battlemented top was re-used lower down in the reconstruction.
After serving for a time as the parish hall, St Martin's was for some years in use as a night shelter. Among the monuments here the most elaborate in that to Jeremiah Revans and his wife; the former died in 1727, the latter in 1711. They are represented as near-lifesize kneeling figures, one on each side of a reading desk. The furnishings were mostly modern, but there was a very nice Jacobean priest's chair.
St Martin at Oak tower from west [2047] 1937-10-12
The base forms a western porch.
St Martin at Oak tower air raid damage [4079] 1952-07-06
St Martin at Oak with truncated tower [4363] 1955-08-20
Tower after restoration and conversion of the building into a parish hall, 1955.
St Martin at Oak interior view east [2244] 1938-04-01
St Martin at Oak interior view west [2246] 1938-04-01
St Martin at Oak interior gallery view [2250] 1938-04-01
St Martin at Oak south aisle [2249] 1938-04-01
St Martin at Oak south arcade [2245] 1938-04-01
Slender and refined late Perpendicular piers.
St Martin at Oak 15c font [2248] 1938-04-01
St Martin at Oak Jacobean priest's chair [2247] 1938-04-01
St Martin at Oak Jeremiah Revans monument [2243] 1938-04-01
Jeremiah Revans and wife, died 1727 and 1711.
St Martin at Palace south side [0021] 1934-01-21
The neighbouring church of St Martin-at-Palace was another victim of redundancy, and after some interior reorganisation was officially opened as the Norfolk Probation Centre on 16th February 1990. Mentioned in the Domesday Survey of 1086, St Martin's retains some long-and-short work in the eastern angles of the chancel that probably dates from that time. Apart from this, the church was largely rebuilt in the 15c, the work supposedly being completed by Walter Lyhart, Bishop of Norwich from 1446 to 1472. Dr J.C.Cox, writing in 1911, mentioned that Lyhart's rebus appeared on the south doorway, but it does so no longer.
The church now consists of a square western tower, a nave with north and south aisles, a south porch with room above, and a chancel. The upper part of the tower fell in 1783, and all but one of the five bells were sold to pay for the repairs. Sillett's view of the church in 1828 shows it much as it is today, except that the tower was then somewhat lower; it was raised to its present height in 1874.
St Martin at Palace east end [4066] 1952-03-20
St Martin at Palace east end [6634] 1990-08-22
Saxon "long and short" work in the angles of the Chancel.
St Martin at Palace east end [6700] 1991-07-07
St Martin at Palace from NW [B140] 1931-00-00
St Martin at Palace south porch [6701] 1991-07-07
St Martin at Palace interior view east [2199] 1938-03-26
St Martin at Palace east window [2203] 1938-03-26
St Martin at Palace interior view west [2202] 1938-03-26
During the Second World War the building sustained some damage, chiefly to its stained glass. This was later repaired, and some of the old figures went into the new windows. On 3rd July 1952, Bishop Herbert officiated at a service of dedication to mark the completion of the restoration and the installation of some new furnishings. By 1973, the parish having been united with that of neighbouring St James's, services were no longer being held here and the organ was transferred to the church of St Mary and St Andrew at Horsham St Faith. This was probably the same organ that was purchased in 1863 for £90 and renovated and enlarged in 1887. The single bell was at a later date sent to St Mary's church, Happisburgh, who in 1985 had it recast into a treble.
The interior of the church, well kept when I took photographs here in 1938, had a number of features of interest to the visitor.
St Martin at Palace early 15c font [2200] 1938-03-26
The early 15c font at the west and of the nave had an octagonal bowl with traceried panels and a stem supported by eight engaged shafts. Above it hung a splendid 17c spider candelabrum of brass.
St Martin at Palace Calthorpe tomb [2201] 1938-03-26
At the east end of the north aisle was, and still is, the altar tomb of Elizabeth Calthorpe with its several coats-of-arms showing her connection with many leading Norfolk families, including that of Anne Boleyn. In a glass case on its altar top was a great rarity, a chained book.
St Martin at Palace candelabrum over font [2204] 1938-03-26
On leaving the church we may spare a thought for the men buried here who were killed during the skirmishes of Kett's rebellion in 1549. Among them was Lord Sheffield, four of whose knights were buried in the chancel of the neighbouring church of SS Simon and Jude. A tablet on the opposite side of the road was positioned to mark the spot where Lord Sheffield fell.
St Mary Coslany S side from St Mary's Plain [B137] 1931-00-00
St Mary Coslany S side from St Mary's Plain [1922] 1937-08-24
In addition to the Baptist church and a Zoar chapel there is, on the north side, a parish church. The latter is by far the oldest of the three; its round tower built by Saxon labour some 900 years ago, though the remainder of the church was largely rebuilt about 400 years later.
The future of St Mary's church has been placed in jeopardy on a number of past occasions. At the end of the 19c it had been allowed to fall into such a state of disrepair that services were held only irregularly, and it is said that in rainy weather umbrellas were a necessity inside as well as outside the church. When the Norfolk and Norwich Archaeological Society visited there in 1898 it was, according to their annual report, "sad to see the state of ruin into which this fine building has been allowed to fall, and the hope was expressed that it would soon be re-opened for the benefit of the large population amidst which it stands". Some ten years later that hope had been achieved: the stonework had been repaired, the roof put in order and the semi-collapsed 14c belfry taken down. At the same time the true date of the tower was revealed when the four original belfry windows were discovered and unblocked, revealing double-angular heads supported on round central shafts.
St Mary Coslany circular tower [3425] 1940-05-19
Pre-conquest round tower.
St Mary Coslany from NE [1719] 1937-06-17
Another occasion when St Mary's was in danger came on 2nd August 1942, when in the early hours of the morning fire bombs ignited the roof timbers at the "crossing" of nave and transepts. The blaze was fortunately extinguished before too much damage had been done, and after repairs had been carried out and the walls colourwashed a re-opening service was held in June 1950. After that, the church was seldom used for its original purpose, and in 1974 it was declared redundant.
In 1979 plans were drawn up to convert the church into a theatre, to be named the Luke Hansard playhouse after the reporter of parliamentary proceedings who was baptised here, but because of lack of support this idea was not taken up. A year later the Friends of Norwich Churches decided to rent St Mary's from the Norwich Historic Churches Trust for their new headquarters. They hoped to keep it as a "church of mediaeval times" and to hold concerts, meetings and exhibitions. It was officially opened as such in June 1981, by Lady Harrod, but after only two years the Friends had to give it up on financial grounds. Eventually towards the end of 1985 the building was opened as a craft and design centre, which use not only enables the public to patronise local initiative but permits them to enjoy the surroundings of one of the city's most delightful churches. This use is perhaps all the more appropriate because a number of the Norwich School of Painters have had connections with the church. John Crome was married here in 1792, and several of his children were baptised here. John Sell Cotman was also baptised here in 1782, and Robert Ladbroke was buried in its churchyard in 1843.
St Mary Coslany south porch [6638] 1990-09-03
St Mary Coslany interior view east [1907] 1937-08-21
26 feet 3 inches wide with archbraced roof.
St Mary Coslany panelled chancel roof [1909] 1937-08-21
Of outstanding interest are the archbraced chancel roof, with its traceried panels, gilded on the bay over the altar, and the fine 15c roof over the "crossing", with its remarkable arrangement of timbers adorned with carved angels and bosses.
St Mary Coslany crossing roof [1911] 1937-08-21
Intersection of nave and transept roofs with great cross ribs. Central boss of rayed figure of the Virgin.
St Mary Coslany font and 18c cover [1906] 1937-08-21
St Mary Coslany pulpit with hourglass [1908] 1937-08-21
15c pulpit.
St Mary Coslany Thomas de Lingcole tablet [1905] 1937-08-21
St Mary Coslany Thomas de Lingcole tablet [3767] 1949-04-28
When I took photographs here in 1937 my attention was particularly drawn to the 15c pulpit, carved with the linen-fold pattern and supporting an hourglass; to the mural tablet on the south wall of the chancel depicting Clement Hyrne, who died in 1596, his wife and three children; and to a much older inscription on the west wall of the nave which was then in a sadly deteriorating condition in spite (or perhaps because) of a protective glass frame placed over it earlier in the 20c. This old inscription records in Norman-French that Thomas de Lingcole had given a wax taper and a lamp to the altar of the Holy Trinity; he was a tanner and bailiff of the city who died in 1298.
St Mary Coslany Clement Hyrne mural tablet [1910] 1937-08-21
Clement Hyrne, died 23 September 1596.
St Mary Coslany bells St Catherine's Mile X [1731] 1937-06-26
The six bells which were formerly here were all cast in Norwich. The two largest were late pre-Reformation; two others were made by John Brend in 1640 and the other two by Brasyer. Because of their unusually small size they have been called a "toy" peal. From 1909 until 1939 the church was in regular use for Sunday school and children's services, but the bells were not used; in November 1936, an application was made to the Norwich Consistory Court to have them sold to the modern church of St Catherine, Mile Cross. There they have been hung "dead"; that in to say, they may be chimed but not swung. It is unlikely they will provoke the local inhabitants into wishing upon the ringer a fate once desired for the Mancroft campanologists, whose activities led an old parish clerk to record the following lines:
Ye rascally ringers - inveterate foes,
Disturbers of those who are fond of repose;
I wish, for the peace and quiet of these lands,
That ye had round your necks what ye pull with your hands.
St Mary Coslany bells St Catherine's Mile X [1732] 1937-06-26
St Mary the Less south side from Queen St [4472] 1956-09-09
At the corner of Queen St and Tombland were previously two 19c buildings, one occupied by William Plowright, an antiques dealer, the other by tearooms. The latter was seriously damaged by incendiary bombs during the war, and after remaining something of an eyesore both properties were eventually demolished in 1956.
With the site cleared, the long-hidden church of St Mary-the-Less was opened to view - but not for long; the value of the land prohibiting its continuation as an open space. Nowadays the north side of the church may still be glimpsed from the precinct known as St Michael-at-Pleas, between Princes St and Tombland, while from Queen St the south porch and upper stages of the tower are all that remain visible.
St Mary the Less south porch Queen St [B124] 1931-00-00
St Mary the Less south porch Queen St [2119] 1938-03-06
The church's history is as chequered as any. At the dissolution it was granted to the Dean and Chapter of Norwich Cathedral, who thereupon declared it redundant, uniting the parish with that of St George Tombland. On 16th June 1544, the church itself was leased by the Dean, John Salisbury, to the city for 500 years on payment of £20 and a yearly rent of 4 pence. The furnishings, no longer required, were then disposed of: the choir desks went to the city for 15 shillings, the font and a slab to Thomas Farrour for 6s 8d and the rood loft and desks to the church of St George Tombland for 30 shillings.
52 hundredweights of lead were sold in 1554 and the roof tiled, while a few years later £43 was spent fitting the building out for the use of "strangers" selling their baize. For this they were charged an annual rent of £13.
In 1623 it was converted into a hall for the sale of yarn and woven fabrics, but by 1631 the accommodation had become inadequate and the presses were moved to the much larger "New" (now St Andrew's) Hall. Six years later the French or Walloons took it on for a 40-year lease for their place of worship, later obtaining a grant of it in fee.
As recorded by an 18c mural tablet to Paul Colombine on the south wall of the nave, the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes late in the 17c caused a further influx of emigrants from the Low Countries. By early in the 19c however the congregation had dwindled; most had by then joined the Unitarian or other bodies. The last Elder, in fact, was appointed in 1803.
St Mary the Less north side [2093] 1938-02-26
St Mary the Less from Kerrison's Yard [2094] 1938-02-26
About 1862 the trustees let the building to the "receivers of doctrines enunciated by Emmanuel Swedenborg", and later (in 1869) to the Catholic Apostolic church, followers of Edward Irving, who continued here until moving to other premises in 1953. Since then it has been used variously as St Andrew's parish hall and then as a place of storage.
The building itself is not large, and consists of a nave and chancel with a rood stair turret to the north, a square west tower and a south porch with room above.
St Mary the Less tower from north [2092] 1938-02-26
St Mary the Less tower from NW [2091] 1938-02-26
St Mary the Less interior view east [2355] 1938-04-23
St Mary the Less interior higher view east [2359] 1938-04-23
The furnishings at the time of my visit were quite modern, but hollowed out of the south wall of the nave were two piscinae, with an angle piscina in the chancel at the side of a window whose sill formed the sedilia. Several small consecration crosses were also to be seen. The unusually tall and narrow tower arch, reaching almost to the nave ceiling and having banded shafts, was a feature not to be missed.
St Mary the Less interior view west [2356] 1938-04-23
St Mary the Less Paul Colombine tablet [2358] 1938-04-23
Paul Colombine, son of French refugee, died 30th August 1784.
St Mary the Less piscina and sedilia [2357] 1938-04-23
Piscina and windowsill sedilia, south side of chancel.
St Mary the Less piscina by chancel arch [2360] 1938-04-23
South side of nave.
St Michael at Coslany from NE [2262] 1938-04-07
Mostly Perpendicular.
St Michael at Coslany from SE [0896] 1936-04-12
St Michael at Coslany south aisle east end [0346] 1934-12-26
At the east end of the south aisle is the Thorpe Chapel dedicated to the Virgin Mary. It was founded and endowed by Robert Thorpe in the reign of Henry VII. Its exterior has the finest example in the country of flint and stone panelling, known as flush work. The chancel was refaced as a copy of this in 1883.
St Michael at Coslany south aisle flushwork [3771] 1949-04-29
St Michael at Coslany south aisle flushwork [6234] 1982-07-05
St Michael at Coslany tower south side [2242] 1938-03-31
St Michael at Coslany west doors [2241] 1938-03-31
15c with traceried and carved panel and traceried jamb mould.
St Michael at Coslany interior view east [2235] 1938-03-31
The nave was rebuilt by John and Stephen Staton who were Sheriffs in 1511 and 1512 during which period the rebuilding was completed.
St Michael at Coslany interior view west [2236] 1938-03-31
St Michael at Coslany interior north aisle [2239] 1938-03-31
Arcade early 16c.
St Michael at Coslany interior south aisle [2238] 1938-03-31
Begun by Alderman Gregory Clark and finished by his son who was Mayor in 1514.
St Michael at Coslany interior west door [2240] 1938-03-31
Entrance from nave into tower with carved wooden figures above cornice.
St Michael at Coslany interior altar tomb [2237] 1938-03-31
William Ramsey, Mayor 1502 and 1508. He built the north aisle with its chantry chapel dedicated to Saint John the Baptist in which he lies buried.
St Michael at Pleas tower and south porch [1546] 1937-04-24
St Michael at Pleas tower and south porch [6646] 1990-09-26
St Michael at Pleas tower from west [B123] 1931-00-00
St Michael at Pleas north transept [2298] 1938-04-12
The church is Perpendicular.
St Michael at Pleas south porch [2297] 1938-04-12
Stooled and canopied niches flank the entrance with another above. Carved in the spandrels of the entrance are St Michael and Dragon.
St Michael at Pleas interior view east [1854] 1937-08-07
St Michael at Pleas 15c font and 17c cover [1855] 1937-08-07
St Michael at Thorn south side from Ber St [2180] 1938-03-18
The church of St Michael-at-Thorn stood at the edge of the Ber St ridge, overlooking the Wensum valley. On its south side Thorn Lane led steeply downhill into King St, but since the area was redeveloped in the early 1960s it terminates at Rouen Rd.
The church was completely gutted by the incendiary raid, leaving only the walls and tower standing. As described by Ian Hannah, the building was partly built in 1430 but largely modern. It consisted of a square west tower, nave with north aisle and south porch, and a chancel. The original tower collapsed in 1886 and was rebuilt in the following year. To judge from the view in Sillett's Norwich Churches, published in 1828, the style of the modern work followed very closely that of the old.
Latterly the tower contained only one bell, but John L'Estrange noted in 1874 that "There were three bells here until about 1838, when the two largest were sold, to help to build a hideous north aisle, recently replaced by a much more comely structure. They are now the first and second bells at Bale, near Holt. The inscription on 2, 'Nobis Succurre Michael Raphael Gabriel Quaesumus', is unique." On the remaining bell he observed the following inscription: "Pack and Chapman of London Fecit 1777. John Spratt and Henry Warns Ch. Wardens."
The main entrance to the church was through the porch and south doorway; the latter was Norman probably the oldest remaining part of the building. Having survived the blitz it was later dismantled and re-erected in the rebuilt St Julian's church. It is described as having a shaft on either side supporting a round-headed arch with cable and zig-zag ornaments, with one of the billets of an outer moulding carved into a queer little animal. According to White's Norfolk directory of 1833 the door was then still in possession of its ancient ironwork.
Turning our attention to the interior, an octagonal font with shields constituted about the only ancient fitting. All the woodwork was modern, including a fine roodscreen surmounted with a St Michael's cross.
The historian Francis Blomefield wrote that the living "was anciently a Rectory appendant to the Castle, until the Conqueror gave it to FitzWalter along with St Martin at the Bale." The latter, also known as St Martin-in-Balliva, stood anciently on a triangular piece of ground close by the entrance to Golden Ball St, near the principal entrance to the barbican of the Castle, but was demolished in 1562 when the parish was united to that of St Michael. The strange title of the church stems from its having been built within the bailey, the outer courtyard of the castle.
In 1926 a chapel in St Michael's was dedicated to the patron saint of the Bale to perpetuate this association with St Martin's. In the registers, which date from 1562, are records of burials here of many of the criminals who were executed on the Castle hill.
With regard to the dedication - or rather the "surname" - of the church, Blomefield mentions that it is "called in antient evidences, St Michael in Berstreet, and ad Spinas or at the Thorns, and even to this Day, a very large Thorn remains growing in the Churchyard. I find it also in the most antient Deeds called St Michael Super Montem, or St Miles on the Hill from its situation".
To the last, thorn trees continued growing in the churchyard, though perhaps not the same ones to which Blomefield referred. The name of Thorn Lane is comparatively modern, for two centuries ago it was known as Sandgate, no doubt from the nature of the soil there.
In July and August 1952, the tower and all other remains were demolished, and the site was converted into a private car park.
St Michael at Thorn south side from Ber St [B102] 1931-00-00
The original tower built in 1436 collapsed 3rd November 1886, but was rebuilt in 1887.
St Michael at Thorn south Norman doorway [2179] 1938-03-18
Norman. Since re-erected in nearby St Julian's church.
St Michael at Thorn interior view east [1869] 1937-08-12
Modern oak rood screen surmounted by a St Michael's cross.
St Michael at Thorn tower before demolition [4081] 1952-07-31
It survived air raids in 1942 but the tower was demolished ten years later.
St Paul's from north [1553] 1937-05-03
Apart from its architectural merits, this church was of particular interest in that originally it served not only the parish but also a hospital for poor strangers, vagrants, sick and impotent folk. Founded between 1118 and 1145 (over a century before its sister institution, the Great Hospital) it became known as Norman's Spital from a monk of that name who was one of its earliest masters. In 1571 it was occupied as the city bridewell, but this use ceased after 1583 when William Appleyard's old house in St Andrew's was converted to that purpose. Claude Messent recorded in 1934 that certain remains of old walls and re-used materials in later buildings could still be seen to the south of the square, but all was finally swept away by the construction of the Inner Link road in 1970.
St Paul's tower south side from Barrack St [0172] 1934-07-17
Dedicated jointly to St Paul the apostle and St Paul the first Christian hermit, the church was of ancient foundation; the lower part of its round tower possibly of Norman origin. It formerly possessed an octagonal belfry, but this was taken down in 1819 and replaced with a shallow coping of white brick and stone. It was also about this time that two of its three bells were sold, one to Postwick, the other to Witton, two churches only a short distance apart.
The remainder of the building, which consisted of a nave without clerestory, a north aisle and a rib-vaulted south porch with chamber above, was largely late 15c in style.
St Paul's from SE [3371] 1940-04-21
A small apsidal chancel had been added in 1870.
St Paul's interior view east [2251] 1938-04-02
The interior of the church had been renovated and repaired in 1921 and again in 1933, when the organ was overhauled. The building had not always been so well kept, however, as we learn from certain notes made by William Utten, the 18c public notary. In 1773 he recorded that the very path to the north door was overgrown with weeds, probably a matter of indifference to an indifferent parish, and that the drainage was from the graveyard to the church. Inside, the walls were green and filthy with pavements bad and rain coming into the vestry. Five years later he was still reporting that the pavements, doors, seats, walls and windows were all "wretched". The gallery was out of repair and its removal was recommended on safety grounds; the tower was "bad" and the churchyard walls falling down.
St Paul's interior view west [2252] 1938-04-02
St Paul's apsidal chancel [2253] 1938-04-02
Added 1870.
St Paul's 15c font [2254] 1938-04-02
The font was octagonal, with narrow traceried recesses in the stem and a quatrefoil on each side of the bowl.
St Paul's screen across tower arch [2255] 1938-04-02
Originally forming the western arm of the parclose screen.
St Paul's parclose screen [2256] 1938-04-02
East end of north aisle. Above the doorway, facing north, St George's Arms and a Cross Fleure.
St Paul's doorway to parclose screen [2257] 1938-04-02
Most of the furnishings were modern, but there was a fine parclose screen occupying the easternmost bay of the arcading, formerly a chapel of St Mary; the screen had perpendicular tracery with arms and initials in shields above the doorway. Another portion of this screen had been used to close the tower arch at the west end of the nave. The historian Francis Blomefield identified the initials C.L. on the screen as being those of Christopher Lestrange, who had contributed towards its cost, and E.D. as those of Elizabeth Drury, who had also contributed and who was buried in the chancel in 1445.
St Paul's north aisle [2258] 1938-04-02
The easternmost pier is pierced with a narrow arch.
St Paul's air raid damage from south [3755] 1948-09-10
Part of the site of this church was later absorbed into the Inner Link road, and the remainder was converted into a small public garden and children's play area after levelling and removal of any human remains.
St Peter Hungate view NE from Redwell St [2184] 1938-03-19
St Peter Hungate view NE from Princes St [B132] 1931-00-00
St Peter Hungate view NW [2209] 1938-03-26
The present building, a cruciform structure, was built by John Paston and Margaret his wife (the patrons of the benefice) and was finished in 1460. This church, long disused, was converted into an Ecclesiastical museum in 1932.
St Peter Hungate 15c north doorway [1929] 1937-08-25
With fine Perpendicular tracery.
St Peter Hungate interior view east [1924] 1937-08-25
St Peter Hungate east window [1925] 1937-08-25
15c and 16c glass.
St Peter Hungate crossing roof [1927] 1937-08-25
Great cross ribs and large wooden boss.
St Peter Hungate squint from nave [1926] 1937-08-25
Northerly one of a pair of squints or hagioscopes from nave into side chapels.
St Peter Hungate 15c font [1928] 1937-08-25
Early 15c with traceried bowl and shaft, the bowl having top and bottom battlemented mould.
St Peter Hungate Matthew Goss monument [1930] 1937-08-25
Matthew Goss, died 1779. In 1757 he presented to the City the Mayor's Chain with medal. He was himself never Mayor.
St Peter Mancroft floodlit from SW [5734] 1977-03-12
"A tower, N and S porches, nave, N and S aisles, N and S transepts, chancel aisles and treasury.....Entirely rebuilt and finished in 1455, it stretches between two thoroughfares, and therefore has arches on the S and N of tower and a passage under the E end so that processions around the building could be on consecrated ground.....The tower is very fine with rectangular buttresses, niched and canopied in all stages....The buttresses merge at the top with crocketted octagonal turrets....The west front has deeply recessed jambs to doorway with two rows of ornaments, one with shields in traceried panels and one with quatrefoils....A great W window with the emblems of St Peter and St Paul in the spandrils. The tower is crowned with a modern fleche after the style of that at East Harling. At the E end of the chancel are fine octagonal turrets, the drums pierced and traceried and with crocketted tops. The magnificent clerestory of 17 large three-light windows, has very narrow piers between them with little buttresses outside. The interior is most impressive. At the W end is a nobly moulded and lofty tower arch, with ringers gallery below it. The nave and chancel are continuous, and have the fine feature of the aisles stopping one bay short of the E end to admit windows N and S to light the altar. The loft arcades on clustered columns have canopied niches above the piers, supporting a short shaft capped with large angels from which spring the wall-posts. The lovely roof is similar to those at Ringland and Framlingham (Suff.) but is finer than any of them. It is a hammer-beam and arch-braced roof, but the hammer-beams are concealed by fine vaulting....The font was undoubtedly a Seven Sacrament one though the panels are completely obliterated.....It stands on two traceried steps and has a remarkable 15c canopy 5' 6" square like Trunch. The 10" carved posts at the corners are all that remain of the original canopy, the top being a poor restoration. Space will not permit me to describe the wonderful glass of the E window which has 42 panels (7 modern) but I think the most interesting panel is the Annunciation....Behind the Sanctuary is "The Treasury" so called, which is a three-storey structure, containing the Sacristy on the top floor, below the vestment chamber,...and below that a crypt.....The Sacristy is full of interesting things....not least the magnificent church plate." (H.Munro Cautley F.S.A. A.R.I.B.A. in Norfolk Churches, 1949).
St Peter Mancroft south side from Hay Hill [B125] 1931-00-00
St Peter Mancroft south side from Haymarket [0032] 1934-02-11
St Peter Mancroft south transept [6640] 1990-09-03
St Peter Mancroft east end treasury [2269] 1938-04-07
Vestment chamber and crypt below.
St Peter Mancroft N side from St Peter's St [0139] 1934-06-28
St Peter Mancroft north transept [2232] 1938-03-30
Chapel of St Nicholas.
St Peter Mancroft tower west side [4629] 1961-08-06
About 100 feet. The lead fleche and angle turrets added 1883, architect George E.Street.
St Peter Mancroft west doorway flushwork [2270] 1938-04-07
Flush panelling around lower stages of tower.
St Peter Mancroft interior view east [1842] 1937-08-07
St Peter Mancroft interior view east [1843] 1937-08-07
St Peter Mancroft east window stained glass [2230] 1938-03-30
35 of 42 panels are ancient.
St Peter Mancroft interior view west [2229] 1938-03-30
St Peter Mancroft 15c font and canopy [1867] 1937-08-12
15c font with contemporary posts to otherwise modern canopy.
St Peter Mancroft 19c font in N transept [2231] 1938-03-30
St Peter Mancroft Francis Windham tomb [2186] 1938-03-19
Judge Francis Windham, died 1592.
St Peter Parmentergate from SE [B130] 1931-00-00
St Peter Parmentergate from SE [2134] 1938-03-07
Probably wholly rebuilt late 15c.
St Peter Parmentergate from building site [4648] 1961-09-10
From site of Norman's Buildings.
St Peter Parmentergate from north [7852] 2001-09-13
St Peter Parmentergate south porch [2289] 1938-04-10
Parvise of which is converted to a chapel dedicated to St Anthony.
St Peter Parmentergate west doorway [2290] 1938-04-10
With carved shields and spandrels.
St Peter Parmentergate interior view east [1851] 1937-08-07
The carved oak reredos was erected by Rev W.Hudson vicar 1873-93 in memory of his wife.
St Peter Parmentergate 15c font [2226] 1938-03-30
East Anglian type.
St Peter Parmentergate R Berney altar tomb [1880] 1937-08-14
R.Berney esq and his wife 1623.
St Peter at Southgate ruined tower [B127] 1931-00-00
St Peter at Southgate ruins view east [2191] 1938-03-21
Overlooking what was Read's flour mill in King St from the west is the former churchyard of St Peter Southgate, now a playground. The lower part of the tower with a brick Tudor arch is all that remains of the church itself, which was demolished in 1887 (not as erroneously stated on an adjoining plaque). A sketch of the building was made by James Sillett in 1828 and a photograph taken shortly before its abandonment is in the Local Collection of the Norwich Central Library.
St Peter at Southgate ruins view NW [5371] 1974-05-27
This church was used for services until a few years before its demolition in 1887. It consisted of a nave, chancel, north chapel, south porch and a square west tower in which were three bells. Anciently known as St Peter de Bither, it was founded before 1217 but appears to have been rebuilt during the late Perpendicular period. All that now remains is the lower part of the tower with a brick Tudor arch.
St Saviour's church and cherry tree COLOUR [0959] 1936-05-15
St Saviour's tower from Stump Cross [3189] 1939-07-30
Originally much taller it was reduced to its present height in the mid 19c.
St Saviour's south side [2267] 1938-04-07
14c and 15c work.
St Saviour's interior view east [2205] 1938-03-26
St Saviour's interior view west [2207] 1938-03-26
St Saviour's 14c font [2206] 1938-03-26
Traceried and slightly battered bowl. The columns of the shaft spring from beasts.
St Saviour's John Baseley monument [2208] 1938-03-26
John Baseley, Mayor 1791, flanked by sword and mace rests.
St Simon and St Jude view NW from Wensum St [2181] 1938-03-18
At the corner of Wensum St and Elm Hill stands the redundant church of Saints Simon and Jude, for some years the local headquarters of the Scouts' Association. The building consists of a chancel, a nave and the remains of a tower; although a number of books also mention a north porch there is no evidence this, nor is one shown in James Sillett's drawing made in 1828.
A church on this site is recorded in Domesday. The historian Francis Blomefield stated that it "was the Bishop's own Church before the See was settled here" - i.e. before its removal from Thetford in 1094. It was rebuilt in its present form during the 15th century, the tower being begun in 1446.
Regular services ceased to be held here in 1894, but for a short while after that it was used for a Sunday School, and the patronal festival was celebrated annually until 1920. By that time decay had already set in; although the churchyard on its south side was always well kept, the church had become smothered with ivy.
In November 1934, a commission appointed by the bishop condemned it to be demolished, but action was stayed; five years later an appeal for £1,000 to restore it was launched by the Norwich Amenities Preservation Society. Within a month or so work was commenced on the interior of the chancel and the ivy outside was taken down. Unfortunately the war intervened, the work came to a standstill, and within a very short space of time the great east window became half obscured again.
After the war the matter of its restoration was again taken up, this time by the Norwich Society, who in 1950 launched an appeal for £3,000 to finance the work. Two years later, with the work completed, the Norwich Scouts were able to move in; the official opening took place some months later in March 1953.
St Simon and St Jude view NW from Wensum St [B073] 1931-08-03
Some interesting discoveries were made while repairs were in progress, including the doorway and passage to the old rood loft, and a rectangular brass plate marking the burial site of Sir John Pettus, Kt, who died on 9th April 1613, aged 64.
One of those who made a handsome contribution towards the restoration was an American citizen, James T.Pettus, one of Sir John's descendants. In August 1960, when his son, also James, visited Norwich special arrangements were made for his children, Ruth Eve (a toddler) and William Watkins Pettus, aged six weeks to be christened there. Since the font had been removed some years previously, a large silver goblet was used for the baptismal water.
By 1973 the scouts were finding their accommodation cramped and difficult to heat. In that year permission was obtained from the Church Commissioners and the planning authority for an extra floor to be put in. This was done without interfering with the fabric in any way, by supporting it on a framework separate from the church itself.
Some 16c stained glass was taken out just before the war and fixed in a window of the ambulatory of Norwich cathedral. It consisted of two large coats-of-arms, one of Sir Nicholas Bacon, Lord Treasurer in Queen Elizabeth I's time, the other of William Cecil, Lord Burleigh. A sword-rest formerly here, bearing among others the name of Thomas Pettus, Mayor in 1590, was transferred to the St Peter Hungate church museum. The organ, which stood on the western gallery, was sold to another parish in 1920.
In 1874 when John L'Estrange published the results of his survey there were five bells here including one each by Richard Brasyer, William Brend and John Brend junior. Because the tower had become dangerous a faculty was obtained in 1880 to sell four cracked bells. The money thus raised was to go towards rebuilding the tower, but despite this it collapsed in 1913.
St Simon and St Jude north door [2182] 1938-03-18
Perpendicular tracery.
St Simon and St Jude interior view east [2171] 1938-03-16
St Simon and St Jude interior gallery view [2178] 1938-03-16
St Simon and St Jude interior view west [2177] 1938-03-16
St Simon and St Jude vestry door [2176] 1938-03-16
South side of chancel, having St Simon in one spandrel and three fishes in the other.
St Simon and St Jude 15c font [2172] 1938-03-16
Among the furnishings formerly here may be mentioned the font, which stood immediately below the gallery. This had an octagonal shaft and bowl and was carved with designs resembling foliage.
St Simon and St Jude John Pettus monument [2173] 1938-03-16
One cannot leave the church without referring to the most important relic of all, the monument to Sir John and Sir Augustine Pettus, now encased in a wooden cupboard-like structure to ensure its preservation. It is built on the east wall of the nave, extending in height to the springing of the chancel arch. Here in marble is the recumbent effigy of Sir John in complete armour, above which are Sir Augustine and his wife Abigail with their two sons and four daughters. Sir Augustine was buried here on 9th July 1613.
St Simon and St Jude Thomas Pettus monument [2175] 1938-03-16
There is a smaller monument to Thomas Pettus, son of John Pettus, a cloth merchant, south of the chancel arch. He died in 1597, aged 78; according to his epitaph his good name was known in all the towns of England. A picturesque fragment of the family house remains at 41-43 Elm Hill. Pettus House.
St Stephen's south side from Church Lane [B099] 1931-00-00
From St Stephens Church Lane, later called Malthouse Rd.
St Stephen's tower S side from Church St [0173] 1934-07-17
The date 1601 refers to a restoration. The base or porch is 14c. Church St is now called William Booth St.
St Stephen's south side [2272] 1938-04-07
Mostly 16c and is said to have been finished in 1550 after the Reformation.
St Stephen's from NE [3205] 1939-08-07
St Stephen's west end [3348] 1940-03-23
St Stephen's interior view east [1873] 1937-08-12
Four-centred arcades and hammer-beam roof.
St Stephen's east window stained glass [1874] 1937-08-12
15c, 16c and 17c glass.
St Swithin's south side [2015] 1937-09-22
Declared redundant since the war, this church was once at the hub of a flourishing parish. When at the turn of the century, the Rev. John Sawbridge was appointed to the joint livings of St Swithin and St Margaret he found the latter a thriving church; St Swithin's, however, was in a deplorable state. Though the church had formerly possessed a square embattled tower, this had become so dangerous that in 1881 it had had to be demolished, to the benefit of the adjoining alley, which until then had been barely a yard wide at that point. The three bells were transferred to St Margaret's church.
Anxious to get things remedied, the new rector called a meeting to decide whether to turn the church into a parish hall or to keep it as a church and build a hall separately. The latter arrangement was eventually agreed upon, after an anonymous benefactor had come forward with a promise to finance the scheme. He was as good as his word, and by 1910 H.H.Prince Frederick Duleep Singh, who had written a memoir on the church, was able to comment on its judicious restoration, adding that "all Norfolk antiquarians owe this gentleman a deep debt of gratitude".
Mr Sawbridge remained here for some 15 years, seeing the buildings put to full use. He then left for London and later Mildenhall, returning eventually to Norfolk, where he died at Newton Flotman rectory in 1955, aged 78. A few years before his death he revisited St Swithin's and was saddened to see it once more neglected, but he realised that whereas 50 years previously the district between St Benedict's and Westwick St had had a population of some 1,100, it had since dwindled to fewer than a hundred. Were he alive today he would no doubt be much heartened to see it again in full use, this time as an arts centre.
St Swithin's interior view east [2211] 1938-03-30
North arcading fluted columns and pointed arches.
St Swithin's interior view west [2212] 1938-03-30
South arcading classical style with round arches.
St Swithin's roof view west [2215] 1938-03-30
Arch-braced collar-beam roof.
St Swithin's 15c font [2213] 1938-03-30
Carved with emblems of the Trinity and the Arms of East Anglia.
St Swithin's two misericord seats [2214] 1938-03-30

Text and photographs copyright George Plunkett