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. Although we have saved the nave roof from falling by repairing the rafter ends which had rotted away with only thin clay lump walls preventing the roof from spreading we still have a lot of work to do. We repaired the roof just in time with help from the Heritage Lottery Fund and have saved the roof from collapse but would like to repair the rest of the church to save it for future generations.
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
This Sunday, 2nd September, we are holding our annual lunch in memory of Lavender Garnier and hoping to raise lots more money for our restoration fund. Please come and join us at 12 noon at College Farm, College Farm Lane, Thompson IP24 1QG (01953.483.318) for a delicious homemade lunch, good company and music from Pot…Read More
Come along to our QUIZ on Tuesday 1st May at 7pm in the new Thompson Community Village Hall. You don’t need to buy tickets – just turn up in teams of 4 (or we can help you make up a team). Only £3/head to include tea, coffee & cake but please bring your own wine…Read More
We held an information evening in the Thompson Community Hall on Friday 16th March to update everyone with the progress of the building project. The evening was led by Richard Wolstenholme (Fabric Officer & Chair of the HLF Fundraising Committee) We held an Information Evening on Friday 16th March in the new Community Hall to…Read More
There is an awful lot going on behind the scaffolding! The roof coverings have been stripped off and the first 14 trusses have been uncovered to enable the architect and engineer to work out the best method of repairing the rotten rafter ends and to strengthen the roof. After our site meeting today we…Read More
Happy New Year from everyone on the St Martin’s Restoration team. We hope you all had a peaceful & happy Christmas and a have healthy & happy new year. September is a long way off but we wanted to give you plenty of notice to put the date of Lavender’s Lunch in your diaries –…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.