St Martin’s History
Thompson is an ancient settlement dating from the 10th century and the church of St Martin dates from approximately 1300. Our timeline shows a fascinating history since its endowment as a Collegiate Church in 1349 and the building of the college in which six priests resided. Several influential people have been associated with the church, including John Pory, who was born in Thompson in 1572 and became the first Speaker of the first Legislative Assembly in Virginia, and Prince Frederick Duleep Singh who helped save the church 100 years ago.
Our church is once again in need of help. The work to the nave roof was much more extensive, complex & unfortunately more expensive than we expected and as a result we have had to postpone works to the chancel roof, which is likely to be suffering from the same issues as the nave, and also the below ground rain water drainage system, without which the fabric of the church will not fully dry out. This is before we start on the interior....
Why is St Martin's so important?
It has a rare 5 cant scissor-braced nave roof which we have recently restored.
It is a unique and largely unmodernised gem of historic importance; a Grade 1 listed mediaeval building, said to be the finest example of the Decorated style in East Anglia.
It has many unusual medieval and Jacobean features which need to be preserved.
for this unique building...
The roof structure is a rare example from the first half of the 14th century of a scissor braced roof and consists of 40 pairs of rafters. Sadly the rafter ends had rotted away and only thin clay lump walls prevented the roof from spreading. Luckily we caught the problem just in time and have repaired each of the 80 rafter ends using traditional techniques and new materials to match existing. The work was far more extensive than originally envisaged and although we had a generous grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund we also managed to secure extra funding from many generous donors.
Your donations will:
• Help to re-focus religious and community activities in the church and its immediate surrounds.
• Enhance community cohesion and outreach (local, national and international).
• Using the church as backdrop, enable the PCC to deliver hands on experience to visitors of archaeology, history, heritage, education
• Secure the mediaeval fabric and associated artwork.
• Protect the environment, ecology and wildlife.
There is a lot to do, enable and deliver.
PLEASE BE GENEROUS
How you can donate
Just Giving Page
Cash or cheque
Cheques and cash can be sent/delivered to:
The Treasurer, College Farm, College Farm Lane, Thompson, Thetford IP24 1QG
Online banking transfer (BACS)
Bank account name: Revitalising St Martin’s
Sort Code: 20 28 20
Account Number: 9391.4356
Many people have contacted me to thank David and Rachel Butterworth from Breckles Hall for the wonderful cakes etc. they have given to people. Many thought that it was a gift from Fortnum and Masons!We will await directions regarding the re-opening of churches, and I will let you know as soon as possible. The Government…Read More
A Homily – The Sunday after the Ascension This week the Archbishop of Canterbury along with Prince William courageously emphasised the importance of remembering the problems of mental health. We know that 1 in 5 people will be affected by mental issues at some time during their lives, but up until recently it was never…Read More
Rogation Sunday HomilyToday is Rogation Sunday which was encouraged by King Henry 8th. During that time there were processions around the fields in rural communities with clergy leading the occasions. This was supported by the national church following a period of prolonged rain in 16th Century which threatened to ruin crops. These processions were very…Read More
I am hearing so many good things are happening in our communities with many people helping the housebound and needy. Griston Relief Charity is helping a number of people, Thorp House has received meals from the Waggon and Horses, many villages have arranged for the housebound to receive help, postman and those collecting refuse have…Read More
Welcome to the 4th Sunday of Easter – today we should have been at Stow Bedon Church and so our prayers are with the congregation there. Also, it should have been the Wayland Show today and so our thoughts are with our farming community and also the many charities that would have been at the…Read More
Homily – the Road of Emmaus Welcome to the Third Sunday of Easter – today we should have been at Breckles Church and so our prayers are with the congregation there. Last week our choir members came together for tea and cakes at Henry Hardiment’s home in Thompson but it actually it was on Zoom,…Read More
A Mediaeval response to the aftermath of a time of crisis in Thompson Instead of dwelling on the only previous time in our history to compare with the current Covid-19 crisis, I am focussing on the measures taken in the aftermath. But first a little background. The Black Death, as it is usually known, was…Read More
NoticesWelcome to the Second Sunday of Easter – today we should have been at Great Hockham Church and so our prayers are with the congregation there. Thank you so much for your Easter messages and thoughts and our prayers are with you. Hopefully soon we will be able to resume church services. Also I would…Read More
Jesus is Risen Alleluia!This is the first year since my confirmation at the age 11 that I have not taken communion at Easter in church, but thankfully we can have a service at home. Along with thousands of people in our country we are in ‘lock-down’ for the sake of the NHS and its staff…Read More
HOLY WEEK – A MESSAGE FROM REV ADRIAN BELLDuring Holy Week I have created 5 short homilies and a reading for you to use as well as including the ancient Office of Compline used in monasteries and religious houses and we would have used it at Great Hockham.Please keep safe, and please remember that we…Read More
If you would like more information about the renovations or would like to discus making a donation then please write to The Treasurer St Martin's Church, c/o College Farm, Thompson, Thetford IP24 1QG, get in touch by phone on 01953 483.318 or fill in the form below.