Record Details

NHER Number:2642
Type of record:Building
Name:St John the Evangelist's church, Oxborough


Despite losing its roof in 1948, the church of St John the Evangelist remains in use, with worship taking place in the attached chancel. The destruction of the nave roof was caused by the collapse of the large tower, which had been hit by lightning in 1878 and repaired over many decades. The remaining church is highly picturesque, the walls of the main buildings remaining and their floors carpeted by green turf. Luckily enough, the chancel also shelters some of the finest terracotta tombs and tombstones in England, examples of the peak of Catholic art on the eve of the Reformation.


  • Armorial corbel, Oxborough parish church  © Norfolk Museums & Archaeology Service
  • Bedingfield Memorial, Oxborough Parish Church  © Norfolk Museums & Archaeology Service
  • Terracotta Screen, Oxborough Church  © Norfolk Museums & Archaeology Service


Grid Reference:TF 7440 0144
Map Sheet:TF70SW

Full description

Ruined church of the Perpendicular period. Part still roofed contained very important terracotta monuments.
See notes in secondary file.
E. Rose October 1990.

This is one of the sixty five Norfolk churches selected for (S1).
D. Gurney (NLA), 17 February 2006.

August 2008. Building Survey.
Examination of the Bedingfeld Chantry and consideration of repairs required to the roof.
See report (S2) for full details.
S. Howard (HES), 29 October 2010.

See (S3) for a discussion of the Bedingfield monuments.
H. White (NLA), 22 October 2009.

The roof timbers taken for tree-ring analysis yielded no conclusive results (S4).
D. Gurney (NLA), 1 April 2010.

Monument Types

  • CHURCH (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • CHURCH (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Associated Finds

  • COFFIN (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • DOOR (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • DOOR (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • TILE (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • TOMB (Medieval to 19th Century - 1066 AD to 1900 AD)
  • WINDOW (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • WINDOW (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)

Protected Status

  • Listed Building

Sources and further reading

---Article in Serial: Manning, C. R. 1864. Lost brasses. Norfolk Archaeology. Vol VI pp 3-26. p 22.
---Aerial Photograph: TF7401 D,E-G,J-M,Y,AT.
---Aerial Photograph: TF 7401/ ABU.
---Serial: Bryant, T. H.. 1898-1915. The Churches of Norfolk. Vols 1-19. Vols 1-19..
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1996. TF 7401ACB - ACH..
---Record Card: Ordnance Survey Staff. 1933-1979?. Ordnance Survey Record Cards. TF 70 SW 7b [3].
---Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
---Publication: Butler-Stoney, R.. 1986. The Church of St John the Evangelist, Oxborough.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1996. Dispute holds up vital chapel repairs. 21 June.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1997. Artists' work helps save rare church treasures. 1 August.
---Newspaper Article: Lynn News. 1999. Collapsing tower of Oxborough!. 12 April.
---Publication: Country Life. 1929. Oxburgh Hall, Norfolk. 17 August.
---Article in Serial: Purcell, D.. 1973. Sixteenth-century terra-cotta in East Anglia.. ASCHB. Vol 1.
---Monograph: Pevsner, N and Wilson, W. 1999. Norfolk 2: North-West and South. The Buildings of England. 2nd Edition. pp 582-583; Pl 31.
---Monograph: Pevsner, N. 1962. North-West and South Norfolk. The Buildings of England. 1st Edition. pp 280-282; Pl 44a.
---Unpublished Document: Heywood, S. 2008. Repairs to the Bedingfield chantry chapel at the church of St John the Evangelist, Oxborough.. August.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2011. Grants given to 18 county churches. 17 February.
---Photograph: Photographs of St John the Evangelist's church, Oxborough. Black & white.
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
---Photograph: CBH 13.
---Newspaper Article: [Photograph of St John the Evangelist's church, Oxborough].
---Website: Knott, S.. 2005. St John, Oxborough. 24 November 2006.
---Collection: Norfolk Historic Environment Record Staff. 1975-[2000]. HER Record Notes. Norfolk Historic Environment Service.
---Monograph: Bryant, T. H. 1903. Hundred of South Greenhoe. The Churches of Norfolk. Vol XII. pp 191-211.
<S1>Publication: Jenkins, S. 2000. England's Thousand Best Churches.
<S2>Unpublished Report: Heywood, S. 2009. The Church of St John the Evangelist, Oxborough. Repairs to the Bedingfield chantry chapel.
<S3>Thesis: Rolfe, M. 1993. Renaissance Terra-Cotta Monuments in East Anglia.
<S4>Monograph: Bridge, M. C. 2009. St John's Church, Oxborough, Norfolk. Tree-Ring Analysis of Timbers from the Roof of the Bedingfield Chapel. English Heritage Research Department Report Series. 80-2009.

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