Dereham – Church of St. Nicholas

The Church of St. Nicholas in Dereham is quite a lumpy affair (this isn’t a proper architectural term and I imagine that Pevsner would be appalled at my language here) and there’s a separate bell tower arrangement (more on which in another post) because the previous one wasn’t strong enough to support the lovely new bells the church had acquired. There was a church here as early as the mid-seventh century (although the Danes destroyed that when they came to visit), although the current structure primarily dates from between the twelfth and fifteenth centuries.

What is left of the lantern tower is visible in the above photo, it was reduced in height in 1539 following the completion of the bell tower. It has been done neatly, but it means that to me the church doesn’t feel like it has enough height.

The southern side of the church.

The south-west porch, the inner door here to the church is the earliest part of the building, dating to the twelfth century.

The west end of the church.

The east end of the church, which is also the chancel end.

The north side of the church.

I decided against going into much detail here, as the church is so complex I’ll need to break it up (the blog post I mean, not the church itself). Partly to ensure that I can understand what’s going on, but fortunately, there are some pretty complete histories available for this church.

I have visited the interior before, I’ll locate the photos, although hopefully I’ll get to see the interior again soon enough when things return to some sort of normality. I have though written about St. Withburga’s Well before, which is located in the churchyard.