Record Details

NHER Number:58704
Type of record:Monument
Name:Remains of the church of St Martin, Shotesham St Mary

Summary

One of four churches within the parish of Shotesham, St Mary’s appears in historical documents from the 11th century, when Edward the Confessor granted it to the Abbot of St Benet’s, but the majority of the existing fabric appears to be of late 15th or early 16th century date. The church appears to have been abandoned sometime during the 17th century, and may have been partially destroyed during Henry VIII’s dissolution of the monastery of St Benet’s. The building was overgrown and in ruins by at least the early 19th century and is currently roofless, consisting of chancel, nave, west tower, and fragmentary remains of the south porch.

Images - none

Location

Grid Reference:TM 2382 9869
Map Sheet:TM29NW
Parish:SHOTESHAM, SOUTH NORFOLK, NORFOLK

Full description

One of four churches within the parish of Shotesham, St Mary’s appears in historical documents from the 11th century, when Edward the Confessor granted it to the Abbot of St Benet’s (S2), but the majority of the existing fabric appears to be of late 15th or early 16th century date (S3). The church appears to have been abandoned sometime during the 17th century, and may have been partially destroyed during Henry VIII’s dissolution of the monastery of St Benet’s (S7). The building was overgrown and in ruins by at least the early 19th century (S9) and is currently roofless, consisting of chancel, nave, west tower, and fragmentary remains of the south porch.
See detailed descriptions below.
See also (S10) for short description, undated report on condition survey (S11), and photographs (S12)
H. Hamilton (HES), 05 March 2013.

November 1959. Listed Building. Grade II.
Former parish church. Late medieval. Flint with stone and brick dressings.
West tower and aisleless nave. Unbuttressed west tower with 2-light Y-
traceried bell-openings with mainly brick dressings. Other features ob-
scured by abundant vegetation.
Information from (S1)

Pre 1969. Excavation.
The roof of the church had fallen in and the walls were covered with ivy.
A ‘small cutting’ on the interior of the south side of the tower revealed evidence of a mortar floor approximately 15 inches deep. A small body sherd of Late Saxon or early medieval pottery was recovered from above the floor.
Information from (S2).
H. Hamilton (HES), 26 February 2013.

September 1975. Field Observation.
Late 13th century tower with putlog holes in east side and bannerstaff locker within. Nave and chancel in one; only fragments of stone frame remain of pointed east window; rest only ruins, flint and brick. Brick pilaster against south wall of chancel. Possible niche in nave south wall.
E. Rose (NLA), 6 September 1975.

1990. Survey.
St Martin’s is described as a roofless church consisting of chancel, nave, west tower, and fragmentary remains of the south porch. The churchyard is delineated by raised ground, above the level of the road. The remains of the church are covered by abundant ivy and dense undergrowth, making recording difficult. There is historic evidence that this church was constructed in the 11th century, but none of the surviving fabric appears to be that early. The chancel and tower likely date to the late 15th or early 16th century, but the nave appears to be of a different date.
Information from (S3).
H. Hamilton (HES), 26 February 2013.

Before October 2009. Building survey
See (S4), (S5) and (S6). No further details available.
A. Cattermole (HES), 18 July 2011.

2009-2010. Scrub and tree clearance.
The remains of the church had been compromised by ivy roots and saplings since at least the 1950s. Volunteers removed trees and scrub to expose the remaining masonry and the walls were capped to prevent any further collapse.
This work exposed several features which were previously obscured, uncluding two single double splayed windows in the nave, remains of a holy water stoup in the south wall, and a recess for a banner staff cupboard within the tower.
See (S7) for further information.
M. Langham-Lopez (HES), 15 February 2013.

March 2010.
Section 17 agreement signed for St Martin's church.
See (S8).
D. Robertson (NLA), 11 August 2010.

June 2011.
The designation status of St Martin's church is currently being reviewed by English Heritage.
A. Cattermole (HES), 20 June 2011.

Monument Types

  • CHURCH (Late Saxon - 851 AD? to 1065 AD?)
  • FINDSPOT (Late Saxon - 851 AD? to 1065 AD?)
  • CHURCH (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • FINDSPOT (Medieval to 13th Century - 1066 AD? to 1250 AD?)

Associated Finds

  • POT (Late Saxon - 851 AD? to 1065 AD?)
  • POT (Medieval to 13th Century - 1066 AD? to 1250 AD?)

Protected Status

  • Listed Building

Sources and further reading

---Monograph: Bryant, T. H. 1901. Hundred of Henstead. The Churches of Norfolk. Vol VII. pp 84-87.
---Record Card: Ordnance Survey Staff. 1933-1979?. Ordnance Survey Record Cards. TM 29 NW 9 [2].
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
---Collection: Norfolk Historic Environment Record Staff. 1975-[2000]. HER Record Notes. Norfolk Historic Environment Service. NHER 5391.
<S1>Designation: English Heritage. National Heritage List for England. List Entry 1152468.
<S2>Article in Serial: Smith, D.. 1969. A Preliminary Report on the Deserted Medieval Village of Shotesham St Mary, Henstead Hundred, in the County of Norfolk, England.. Gwynedd Journal. pp 170-85.
<S3>Monograph: Batcock, N. 1991. The Ruined and Disused Churches of Norfolk. East Anglian Archaeology. No 51. Microfiche 5:G12. No 55; p 51.
<S4>Illustration: Bouwens, D.. Unknown. Plan of St Martin's Church, Shotesham. Paper.
<S5>Illustration: Bouwens, D.. 2009. Measured plan and elevations of St Martin's Church, Shotesham. Paper.
<S6>Photograph: Bouwens, D.. Unknown. Digital photos of Shotesham St Martin church prior to clearance of ivy.. Digital. Paper.
<S7>Leaflet: Knights, M.. 2010. The Ruined Church of St Martin..
<S8>Unpublished Document: Norfolk County Council. 2009-2010. Norfolk Monuments Management Project Section 17 agreement.
<S9>Illustration: Dixon, R.. Unknown. Shotesham Old Church.
<S10>Monograph: Pevsner, N and Wilson, W. 1999. Norfolk 2: North-West and South. The Buildings of England. 2nd Edition. p 648.
<S11>Unpublished Contractor Report: Jeffries, C. [unknown]. Ruined Churches in Norfolk. Pilot Survey of Church of St Martin, Norfolk. Colin Jeffries.
<S12>Photograph: Ashley, H.. [unknown]. Photographs of St Martin's Church, Shotesham. Black & white.

Related records - none

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