Thorington St Peter

What you need to know about this church

St Peters Church Thorington

Where to find this church

Church Information

St Peters church is located in Thorington, a village in Suffolk about 2 miles south-west of Blythburgh.

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Thorington St Peter church
Tower from the west
Thorington St Peter church

Visiting Thorington St Peter

When we visited St Peter’s in Thorington, construction work was being carried out on it, as you can see on some of the photos. This means of course we have to revisit this church. The short tower has a band of eleven blank arches in the flint work in the second stage. These recesses are about 30 inches wide, 3-4 inches deep and the pilasters between are 12 inches wide. Within these arches are set three stone-framed round headed slit windows. They are not set centrally within the arches, but directly north, west and south of the tower. The double belfry openings, supported by a central stone pillar with a cushion capital, are set back beneath a larger super-arch. The jambs of these openings start with flints, but change to dressed stone. This is probably the level above which the top of the tower was extensively rebuilt in the 16th or 17th century, with brick work inside. The embattled stepped brick parapet was added at that time. The west window is definitely the 19th century idea of the 12th century pattern. The nave and chancel walls are all rendered, with large 15th century windows to the nave, and 14th century to the chancel, though the east one is a 19th century replacement. Many of the windows have fine headstops on either side, but there are also single heads at the same level scattered along then north nave wall. These perhaps supported an earlier roof. A 19th century vestry was added to the south nave, but above its roof, on either side, can be seen parts of a 12th century arch with chip carvings. There is a 16th century sundial further to the east. The north porch now has a brick and cement gable, but lower down it has cut black flints for its faҫade.

The tower arch is now adorned with an exuberant 19th century version of 12th century carved decoration. Above it, the flint wall has been left exposed, enclosing a flint framed upper doorway. Beneath the tower stands the font, with a 13th century Purbeck marble bowl and two pointed arches to each side. This now stands on a 15th century font stem, with four seated lions, two of which are lionesses, one with pointed ears. The nave walls have been cut back to about seven feet in height, to allow for more width for the pews. Most of the furniture and fittings are 19th century. The 14th century chancel was largely rebuilt in the 1860s, and the 14th century piscina has flushwork in its spandrels, where flints have been set into the tracery patterns. The interior of the piscina niche is a red colour, and there are three finials to its ogee arch. The reredos was made in 1881, probably in France or Austria, and it shows Christ and St Peter with the miraculous draft of fishes, the Crucifixion, and Christ with St Peter walking on the water.

Conclusion: open and welcoming village church which has undergone many alterations

Thorington St Peter church
Thorington St Peter church
View into the nave