Record Details

NHER Number:597
Type of record:Building
Name:St Saviour's Church, Magdalen Street, Norwich


St Saviour's Church is a small church with a 14th and 15th century nave, chancel and abruptly shortened tower. For a city church, particularly one in a city so fond of them, this building is small, and looks all the more diminutive for the almost complete lack of nearby contemporary buildings. The church is also a bare few metres from the Stump Cross Flyover which straddles a carpark under which the churchyard lies, and casts a gloom over the surrounding area.

Despite this unpromising situation, St Saviour's has recovered from redundancy and is currently leased by the Norwich branch of the New Frontiers International Church. They have conducted a renovation, refitting the church for use as a youth outreach centre and revealing an intricate scissor-braced roof.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TG 23187 09256
Map Sheet:TG20NW

Full description

St Saviour's Church, Magdalen Street.

1954. Listed Grade I.
Listing Description Excerpt:
"Former parish church now redundant and used as squash club. 14th and 15th century with 19th-century re-working. Flint with brick and stone dressings. West tower. Nave and chancel. South porch and 19th-century north vestry. Short tower with two-storeys of diagonal buttressing."
Information from (S1).
Please consult the National Heritage List for England (S1) for the current details.
Amended by P. Watkins (HES), 19 January 2018. Amended H. Hamilton (HES), 8 November 2019.

1970s or 1980s. Building Survey.
Examined as part of Norwich Survey.
See draft report (S2) for further details.
P. Watkins (HES), 19 January 2018.

March 1973. Building Survey.
Church assessed by Council for Places of Worship ahead of proposed closure.
See report (S3) for further details including lists of fittings and monuments.
P. Watkins (HES), 19 January 2018.

July to August 1996. Watching Brief.
Observation by NAU during conversion of building to Christian youth centre.
Hole by porch on exterior revealed only redeposited human bone. Removal of nave pew platforms produced no archaeological deposits. Stanchion holes within chancel indicated that ground level had been dug away to a depth of 2m to insert brick vaults for the Beevor family in the late 18th century; the fill contain clay pipes. Beneath the north vestry a number of brick vaults were noted, one containing a skeleton without coffin.
See report (S4) for further details. The results of this work are also summarised in (S5).
E. Rose (NLA), 29 November 1996.

The vestry was inspected by E. Rose (NLA) 25 March 1998. It is a small gabled brick building, the bricks having diagonal skintlings (pre around 1770). The north window is blocked by a tomb slab of 1747, but this may be reset. The east window has been altered. The vestry cuts a Decorated chancel window which was not restored in the 19th century as the others were. This means the vaults beneath are neither a Victorian feature nor indicate a medieval chantry, and are therefore even more unusual.
E. Rose (NLA), 27 March 1998.

Note however an 18th century burial in the vestry of St George Tombland.
And Tom Martin's note of vault beneath a ruined vestry at Kimberley.
E. Rose (NLA), 16 November 1999.

Monument Types

  • CHURCH (Medieval to 21st Century - 1066 AD to 2100 AD)

Associated Finds

  • CLAY PIPE (SMOKING) (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • COFFIN (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • HUMAN REMAINS (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Protected Status

  • Listed Building

Sources and further reading

---Monograph: Batcock, N. 1991. The Ruined and Disused Churches of Norfolk. East Anglian Archaeology. No 51. Microfiche 5:G12. No N45; p 175.
---Publication: Cox, J. C. 1911. Country Churches: Norfolk. Vol II. p 189.
---Monograph: Pevsner, N. and Wilson, B. 1997. Norfolk 1: Norwich and North-East. The Buildings of England. 2nd Edition. p 251.
---Publication: Messent, C. J. W. 1932. The City Churches of Norwich. p 75.
---Leaflet: Norwich Historic Churches Trust & HEART. St Saviour, Magdalen Street..
---Unpublished Document: Cattermole, P. 1985. Some Norwich Churches as seen in the Obedientiary Rolls of Norwich Cathedral Priory, 1276-1536.
---Record Card: Clarke, R. R. and NCM Staff. 1933-1973. Norwich Castle Museum Record Card - Norwich - Post Roman.
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
<S1>Designation: Historic England. National Heritage List for England. List Entry 1372838.
<S2>Unpublished Report: [Unknown]. 1983. St Saviour's [draft report]. Building Report.
<S3>Unpublished Report: Council for Places of Worship. 1973. Norwich, St Saviour.
<S4>Unpublished Contractor Report: Shelley, A. and Forrest, K. 1996. A Watching Brief at St Saviour's Church, Norwich. Norfolk Archaeological Unit. 191.
<S5>Article in Serial: Gurney, D. and Penn, K. (eds). 1997. Excavations and Surveys in Norfolk 1996. Norfolk Archaeology. Vol XLII Pt IV pp 547-564. p 557.

Related records

Site 1274Parent of: Church of St.Saviour, Magdalen Street (Monument)
Site 1979Parent of: St Saviour`s Church, Magdelen Street (Monument)
Site 2052Parent of: St Saviour`s Church, Magdelen Street (Monument)
Site 2053Parent of: St Saviour`s Church, Magdelen Street (Monument)
Mon 757Parent of: St Saviour's Church, Magdalen Street (Monument)
Mon 1444Parent of: St Saviour's Churchyard (Monument)
851Parent of: St Saviour's Hospital, Coslany (Monument)

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