Titchwell St Mary
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St Marys church is located in Titchwell, a Norfolk village right on the A149 North Norfolk Coast road, and close to Brancaster Beach.
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Visiting Titchwell St Mary
St Mary’s in Titchwell is another church that is a sheer pleasure to visit on a sunny day like the one when we were there. You can (and should) combine it with a visit to the RSPB Titchwell Marsh, where plenty of birds can be spotted, and the beautiful beach beckons.
The lower part of this tower is 11th century, but about four feet below the string course there is a change in the flintwork, and it slightly tapers. Perhaps the tower was finished after the Conquest? Certainly the belfry openings are double-arched with stone-frames, which indicate late 11th century. There is a triangular-headed flint framed opening in the lower part, which could be early, but the ground floor west window is a 19th century insertion. The tower is topped by a tall slender spike. Within the west wall there are the flint quoins of the early narrow nave. The nave now has large 15th century windows. The north nave wall has certainly been heightened, as has the chancel, where the extra walling is of chalk. In the 1903 restoration two round-headed windows were found in the east wall of the chancel. None of the chancel windows are original. The south porch is 15th century.
The large 11th century tub font (suitable for total immersion of the baby) is at the north-west corner of the nave. It was used for a time as a water trough in a neighbouring field and given a new spiral-carved base when restored. The tower arch has flint jambs of early 11th century, and a somewhat uneven arch. The 14th century screen was restored in 1902. The ogee and mouchette tracery in the arches is supported on turned shafts. The base is somewhat battered and has some renewed woodwork. Within the chancel are various openings which reveal changes over the years. There were three windows with deep splays in the east wall. The piscina has half an ogee arch, but has been interfered with by a new larger window being inserted. There might be the remains of an aumbry (cupboard) to its left. Further west is the reveal of a 12th century window. Opposite is part of an arch, which may have indicated the position of the founder’s tomb. Nearby is an ancient piece of stone, the head end of a stone coffin? In the north-east corner stands an ornate 18th century pedestal font, with a cover, which was in use while the tub font was banished outside.