Ingworth St Lawrence

What you need to know about this church

St Lawrence's Church Ingworth

Where to find this church

Church Information

St Lawrence’s church is located in Ingworth, a Norfolk village about 2 miles north of Aylsham.

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Ingworth St Lawrence church
Tower stump from west
Ingworth St Lawrence church

Visiting Ingworth St Lawrence

St Lawrence’s church in Ingworth probably has the most unusual outer appearance of the Round Tower Churches in Norfolk. This is mainly due to the fact that the round tower has seen better days, as it fell in 1822. Its lower parts were adapted in the 1920s to be useful as a vestry with a boiler house below. It has been thatched, as is the rest of the Church. The 12th century tower was circular all the way up with double-light belfry openings. There are pieces of ferricrete to be seen amongst the flints in the fabric of this church, indicating an early date. The north-west quoin is made from a variety of materials, but mostly lumps of the dark brown ferricrete. The flint courses round the tower, along the west and the north walls are in continuous lines. The buttress between the nave and chancel on the north side has a shield in its base course, showing the Instruments of the Passion, the Cross, the scourges, the crown of thorns, etc. The south nave wall was moved southwards around 1400 to enlarge the nave, and the porch with its parvise (upper room) was added at the same time. It now has an attractive brick stepped gable, added in the 16th century. After the tower fell, a mini steeple was placed on the west gable to support the bell, but this was replaced by the present bell côte in 1895.

The tower arch is made of dressed stone, dating from the 12th century. Behind it is the elevated vestry. In front the 15th century font with cinquefoiled arches on the panels of the bowl, except for a Tudor rose on one. There are small quatrefoils between the engaged pilasters around the stem. The pilasters branch out to support the bowl. The nave is filled with 18th century box pews, made up from earlier benches. The widening of the nave southwards gives space for a niche on its east wall above a side altar. The nearby window has a head of a saint with a forked beard, which dates it to late 14th century glass (a detail I had not spotted on my visits, therefore it is not to be seen in the slideshow).

The Rood screen is unusual, with a 15th century base, now topped with 17th century shafts and a solid top rail. On this stand six spiralled candlesticks and a Crucifix from the 19th century. The panelled choir stalls, with return stalls facing east, were given in 1920. The 18th century altar rails have many shafts, closely packed to prevent dogs approaching the altar! In the east window a panel of 16th century foreign glass shows the Presentation of the Baby Jesus in the Temple.

Conclusion: interesting church with an unusual tower stump

Ingworth St Lawrence church
Font with organ
Ingworth St Lawrence church
Detail of the east window