Record Details

NHER Number:8987
Type of record:Building
Name:St Peter's Church, Rockland St Peter


This church has a round west tower with an octagonal belfry and a south stair turret, all of which are probably 14th century. The thatched nave and shallow transepts are also 14th century. The chancel was rebuilt on a smaller scale in 1908. The light and airy interior of the church is the result of a sympathetic restoration after it was gutted by fire in 1950. There is a neat scissor-brace roof topping white-painted walls. The most striking feature inside is the fine medieval rood screen, moved here from Tottington church in 1951, together with the pulpit and a set of medieval benches. It is understood that the benches have now been returned to Tottington. At the west end of the nave is a large medieval octagonal font.


  • St Peter's Church, Rockland St Peter  © Norfolk Museums & Archaeology Service


Grid Reference:TL 9899 9704
Map Sheet:TL99NE

Full description

July 1958. Listed, Grade II.
Listing Description:
Parish church. C12 west tower, C15 nave, C20 chancel and details of different dates. Flint built with ashlar dressings, thatched nave, chancel with plain tiles. Round tower of 3 stages, the lower blank. Stair turret to south pierced by slit and trefoil lights with conical roof and stages continuous with tower deliniated by string courses. 4 slit windows to ringing chamber. C14 octagonal belfry with ashlar quoins and 2-light ogeed windows alternating with blind windows under continuous string course. C15 gabled north porch with diagonal buttresses and wave moulded entrance arch with chamfered inner face on circular responds and polygonal capitals. Brick hood mould on labels and other repairs 1624. Central tablet inscribed IEAMS. RAINOR. GEAVE. THIS. GODLI. WORK. 1624. Other inscribed tablets irregularly placed. C20 shouldered parapet. 2 brick round-headed lancets to west and one 4-centred light to east, also 1624. Nave carries west parapet on kneelers with fleuron decoration, 2 3-light C15 panel traceried nave windows under 4 centred arches. Short transeptual extensions to east with 2-light C14 windows in form of cinquefoil lights supporting a cusped spherical triangle. Diagonal buttresses at east. Chancel of 1909. Diagonal buttresses and 5-light east window divided by rising mullions with reticulation in sub arches. Gabled vestry at south west of nave 1908 with 3-light Perpendicular south window. Interior. Tall tower arch with hollow chamfer moulding. Scissor braced roof 1950. Stair turret lit from nave by one slit and 2 trefoil windows and entered through C14 timber door with 3 strap bands under shouldered lintel. Tower screen is fragment of rood with one-light ogee divisions below Perpendicular panelling rising to top rail. Rood screen from Tottington church of 3 one-light ogee bays flanking wider ogee opening. Lights have cusps and crocketed finials rising to top rail and rest on panelled base. Base in 3 bays each side with crocket canopy carved on face of stile. Each bay of 2 cusped and sub-cusped lights supporting petal lozenge under super-arch. Angels and diaper fill spandrels. Rood loft parapet of 12 panelled lights below beam which carries figures of crucified Christ, St. Mary and St. John. 20 benches from Tottington with traceried ends, poppy heads and some animal arm rests, all late C14. Early C17 panelled pulpit with C20 stem and plinth. Front rail before pulpit dated 1631 with frieze of scroll work. Fine mid C14 octagonal font with tracery panels on bowl and encircled quatrefoils on stem.
Information from (S1).

Round tower listed as 12th century but no dateable evidence pre 14th century, which is the date of the tower windows, belfry, stair turret, arch etcetera. Nave and transepts 14th century, windows and buttresses 15th to 16th century, 14th century north porch rebuilt in 1624. Chancel half demolished, half of 1908. Interior gutted by fire in 1950. Interesting priests room on first floor tower. Excellent medieval rood screen and set of twenty carved benches from Tottington. See full report (S2) in file.
E. Rose (NAU), 21 February 1985.

1984. Late Saxon/medieval sherd found. See file.
A. Rogerson (NLA), 30 July 1992.

Monument Types

  • CHURCH (Medieval to 19th Century - 1066 AD to 1900 AD)

Associated Finds

  • POT (Late Saxon - 851 AD to 1065 AD)
  • DOOR (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • FONT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • PISCINA (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • POT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • ROOD SCREEN (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • WINDOW (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)

Protected Status

  • Listed Building

Sources and further reading

---Aerial Photograph: TL9897C-E.
---Monograph: Bryant, T. H. 1898. Hundred of Wayland. The Churches of Norfolk. Vol I. pp 90-93.
---Documentary Source: Martin, T. c. 1700-1799. Collections of Church Notes. Norfolk Records Office. 1736.
---Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
---Website: Knott, S.. 2006. St Peter, Rockland St Peter. 24 January 2007.
---Illustration: Ladbrooke. c.1830. [unknown].
---Monograph: Pevsner, N and Wilson, W. 1999. Norfolk 2: North-West and South. The Buildings of England. 2nd Edition. p 616.
---Monograph: Hart, S.. 2010. Medieval Church Window Tracery in England. pp 30, 64.
---Leaflet: Cotton, S. & Tricker, R.. All Saints, Saint Peter's, Rockland..
---Photograph: 1990. St Peter's Church, Rocklands. Print.
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2013. More funding help for round tower churches. 14 March.
---Collection: Norfolk Historic Environment Record Staff. 1975-[2000]. HER Record Notes. Norfolk Historic Environment Service.
<S1>Designation: Historic England. National Heritage List for England. List Entry 1277935.
<S2>Unpublished Document: Rose, E.. 1985. Building Report.. Building Report.

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