St Mary, Crawley

  • About Us
  • Find Us
  • Contact Us
  • Services and Events
  • Features and Facilities
  • More Info

The site of the present church building has been occupied by a church for more than a thousand years. The earliest building was probably a timber Saxon church, followed by a Norman church using some stone of which small fragments survive and then in the 1380s, under the direction of William of Wykeham, Bishop of Winchester and Chancellor of England, a new church was built in the Early English style. Somewhat unusually the nave is built with four massive oak pillars supporting the roof like a farm barn.

Further substantial building work took place in the late 16 century under a very active Archdeacon, a favourite of Elizabeth Tudor, who held the living and then in the late 19th century the chancel was completely refurbished under a Victorian rector and at his expense. The present building is therefore a 12th century foundation with extensive rebuilding in the 14th, 16th and 19th centuries. Finally at the end of the 20th century a church meeting room with kitchen and toilet facilities was built adjacent to the west end with entry from within and without the church. St Mary's now presents itself as a pretty and historic parish church able to serve its village community for Christian worship and use, traditional and modern, yet incorporating and displaying the inheritance of an English parish Church.

This inheritance includes a list on the wall by the main door of all the Rectors of Crawley from 1324 to the present day; a hagioscope or squint through which in the middle ages the congregation in the nave could see the priest at the altar; an aumbry, a small recess in the wall in which the reserved sacrament may be safely kept; a 19th century organ of considerable quality which has recently been rebuilt and new ranks of pipes added; a very striking sculpture of the madonna and child in wood by the New Forest artist Ron Lane and a small tower with a ring of five bells, some dating from the early 18th century. St Mary's has much to show and the interior furnishings reflect the love for the church of the many generations of Crawley residents who have looked after the parish church.

The churchyard in which the church stands has been closed for burials since the 1890s. Many gravestones still stand, the earliest from the start of the 18th century. Not far from the main door there is a large yew tree - the Hampshire weed - undoubtedly several hundred years old. The church building is placed close to the far boundary of the churchyard so that a visitor, making way up the main village street and looking to the right, can appreciate the simplicity, the elegance and the beauty of a small rural, yet historic, parish church.

David Dunbar and Simon Every 

Parish boundary view Bird's eye view

This space is for a Google Map.

You are seeing this message instead because your browser has not loaded the program code to produce the map.

This could be for a variety of reasons, including:
  • Your browser does not support Javascript;
  • You have turned Javascript off
In addition we are aware of some problems with Internet Explorer which are currently being worked on. Firefox and Chrome show the map correctly.
Benefice Administrator
Benefice Office
The Rectory, Church Lane, Littleton
Winchester SO22 6QY
(01962) 880845

Send an Email

Features

Toilets
Organ

 
Other information
A Church Near You ID (venue number): 18361
Archdeaconry: WINCHESTER (411)
Deanery: ANDOVER (41103)
Benefice: The Downs Benefice (41/066CM)
Parish Legal Name: Crawley (410338 )
CofE Church Info: (641338 41/338)
Short URL: acny.uk/18361/
QR Code:

The current editor is: Benefice Office

This page was last updated on Monday 9th October 2017
 
 
 
St Mary : Main Road, Crawley, Hampshire, SO21 2PZ

Our Other Churches

Other Links

Our Web Site

Calendar of Events

About the Parish

Update this church