Burnham Norton St Margaret

What you need to know about this church

St Margaret's Church Burnham Norton

Where to find this church

Church Information

St Margaret’s church is located in the small rural village of Burnham Norton, just to the north of the famous larger village Burnham Market in North Norfolk.

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Tower west view
Drone photo

Visiting Burnham Norton St Margaret

St Margaret’s in Burnham Norton sits in a beautiful position to the north of the far more famous village of Burnham Market; from the churchyard, you have a nice view to the sea and to the old windmill.

This tall round tower shows signs of being made after the Conquest, but built by workmen from earlier times. The flint framed openings are typical of early 11th century work, but the belfry openings being recessed is a late 11th century style. There was originally a circle of twelve round openings, above the line of the six round-headed belfry openings, and below the 15th century battlements. The west quoins of flints for this early church can still be seen within the present west wall, with the aisles added in 13/14th century. The chancel has been shortened, but still shows two fine windows with differing 14th century Decorated tracery on the north side.

One of the fourteen square fonts from the 11th century that still remain in west Norfolk can be found here. It is carved with different patterns on the faces of the bowl, and stands on five pillars, also carved with patterns.

The Rood screen donated in 1458 is still here, though it was given a new top part when restored in 1955. The Saints on its lower parts were scratched off in the 16th century and covered with “improving” texts, which have mostly disappeared. The wineglass pulpit, given in 1450, miraculously still has its painted Saints. It shows the four Latin Doctors, St Ambrose, (north), St Gregory, St Jerome, St Augustine, all learned men who did much to set out the church beliefs and doctrines in 4th – 6th century. The remaining two panels show John Goldale and his wife Katherine, who donated the pulpit in 1450, unusually shown as the same size as the Saints!

The east window, given in 1927, shows two St Margarets, St Margaret of Antioch and St Margaret, Queen of Scotland, who lived about 1046-1093.

Conclusion: beautifully positioned church with plenty to discover

11th century font
Wineglass pulpit