Record Details

NHER Number:9631
Type of record:Building
Name:St Mary's church, Shotesham


St Mary’s is one of two remaining churches in Shotesham. It stands on a hill away from the main village and has the ruins of St Martin’s to the south. The earliest part of the church is the south doorway which dates to around 1200. Both the flint-built chancel and the north chapel date to 1486, as both have windows of identical from. The nave is brick in part and has a single braced roof in the Perpendicular style. The church tower is also in Perpendicular style and made from brick, flint and ironstone. Also of interest is the medieval south door which features spyhole grating and a decorated doorplate. It has also been claimed that the sanctus bell of the church was brought back from Sebastopol in the Crimean. Inside, there is a double brass of 1528, a reading desk made from old 17th century altar, the Royal Arms of William IV and an octagonal figured font.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TM 2378 9882
Map Sheet:TM29NW

Full description

Oldest part remaining is south doorway dating to around 1200.
(S1) dates chancel to late 13th century on basis of three-cusped-lancet-light east window. North chapel built 1486. But vicar claims chancel also of this date, and indeed chapel east window is exactly the same as chancel east and south windows! Either chancel north window was reset in chapel east wall, or windows are simple local imitations (tracery does not appear to have been renewed). Similar tracery now standing in north chapel - where from? Chancel built of flint with reused tile; has two blank pointed arches on south, one containing window is lowered to form sedilia: piscina here surrounded by decorated bricks. Other arch has blocked window now containing 19th century memorials. On north similar arches lead to chapel. Double brass on floor of 1528 and 17th century tomb. 19th century stone reredos. Archbraced roof with old lamp chains. North chapel has door to north and two blocked windows. East window contains old stained glass. Carved beams at top of walls.
Nave is brick in part. Single braced roof (Perpendicular?) with sanctus bell on chancel arch. North door blocked, irregular, contains old carved fragments. Windows 19th century. In chancel arch is staple for rood cross. Nave contains old clock bell of 1675, reading desk made from 17th century altar rails, royal arms William IV 1834, octagonal figured font, old chest. Tower Perpendicular, of brick, flint, and ironstone, with niche. South porch brick; south door medieval with spyhole grating and decorated doorplate; traces of brackets above. Piscina in porch; hole in pillar for bar to keep out sheep. Chalice and paten 1713.
Visited by E. Rose (NAU) 24 April 1976.

Dr S. Cotton notes a bequest to the tower in 1534.

See NHER 5391 for remarkable west churchyard wall.

(S3) states that the sanctus bell has Cyrllic script and is said locally to have been brought back from Sebastopol (a battle in the Crimean War).
E. Rose (NLA) 31 August 2004.

September 2007.
Emergency visit at time of demolition of boiler house on exterior of blocked north nave door. Due to wet concrete works could only be seen from a distance. The doorway has a hoodmould. The buttresses to either side, of medieval or early post medieval brickwork, stand on massive flint foundations. Below the door was a patch of 19th century brickwork but in the small space west of this was visible what appeared to be stripy ground foundations – layers of stone rubble alternating with greenish pebbly soil.
E. Rose (NLA), 26 September 2007.

Monument Types

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

Associated Finds

  • DOOR (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • PISCINA (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • WINDOW (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • WINDOW (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Protected Status

  • Listed Building

Sources and further reading

---Aerial Photograph: TG2398 A-G,K-M,N-W,X,Y,AE-AN.
---Monograph: Bryant, T. H. 1901. Hundred of Henstead. The Churches of Norfolk. Vol VII. pp 88-92.
---Record Card: Ordnance Survey Staff. 1933-1979?. Ordnance Survey Record Cards. TM 29 NW 18 [2].
---Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
---Monograph: Pevsner, N and Wilson, B. 1999. Norfolk 2: North-West and South. The Buildings of England. 2nd Edition. p 648.
---Leaflet: Welcome to the Church of St Mary's, Shotesham..
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
<S1>Monograph: Pevsner, N. 1962. North-West and South Norfolk. The Buildings of England. 1st Edition. p 313.
<S2>Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1981. Repairs problem faces village. 18 June.
<S3>*Verbal Communication: Cattermole, P.. [unknown].

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