All Saints, Hacheston, Suffolk

Feature Sets (2)


Hacheston is a village lying on the road from Framlingham to Wickham Market in east Suffolk. This road, now the B1116, follows the line of a stream that rises in Framlingham and runs into the river Alde at Blaxhall. The land is flattish and arable, and the church is built on a rise at the southern end of the village.

All Saints has a west tower, a nave with a S aisle and a N porch, now converted for use as a vestry, and a chancel. The tower is 15thc., of flint with diagonal buttresses at the west and a plain parapet. The nave has a 12thc. N doorway, now inside the vestry and accessible only from inside the church. The nave and aisle windows are all 15thc. now and triangular brick buttresses have been added to shore up the N wall. The exterior nave and aisle walls are mortar rendered. The aisle is of four bays with the S doorway set in the westernmost bay. It has no clerestory and a 15thc. arcade. Inside the nave is a timber west gallery, added in 1836. The N porch is 15thc. and of flint, partly rebuilt in brick. The chancel was originally shorter, and the old E quoins are visible on the N side. The W part of the chancel has a 13thc. window on the S side, but all other widows are 15thc., including a three-light E window. The chancel is mortar-rendered except the E wall, which is of mixed knapped flint, brick and ashlar blocks. Again the N wall is shored up with a triangular brick buttress. Inside, the 13thc. piscina has been reset in the eastern extension, in the E reveal of the easternmost S window. Davy visited the church in 1817, and recorded that the N porch had been block up some years before (c.1815) and was then the vestry. The nave was restored in the 1840s and '50s, and the chancel from 1879. There were repairs to the tower and the nave and aisle roofs around 1990, and in 1997 the chancel roof was retiled. The only Romanesque sculpture is on the N nave doorway.


Before the Conquest 10 free men and two half free men commended to Eadric Grim held 80 acres. This belonged to Count Alan in 1086. Twelve free men and nine half free men commended to Eadric held 60 acres and 2 acres of meadow, held in demesne by Robert Malet in 1086 and valued under Dennington. One sokemen commended to Eadric held 30 acres and two acres of meadow before the Conquest, and another held six acres, while four free men, also commended to Eadric, held 40 acres and seven free men under the same commendation held 24 acres and half an acre of meadow. All of this was held by Gilbert from Robert Malet in 1086. In addition, four half free men commended to St Edmundsbury abbey held 21 acres that belong to the abbey in 1086. Finally, three free men commended to Thormoth of Parham held 19 acres in Hacheston, belonging to the King in 1086 and in the valuation of Parham. No church was noted in any of these holdings. The church said in the Church Guide to stand at Hacheston in 1086 with 16 acres of land was in fact at Marlesford, the next entry in the Domesday Survey. A fair and a market were granted in 1226 to Hickling Priory, Norfolk, to be held at Hacheston. This is confusing since (following VCH) it was not All Saints' church Hacheston but All Saints' Hasketon that was given to Hickling by King John in 1204. There is an error somewhere, and the fact that Hasketon is now dedicated to St Andrew rather than All Saints suggests that it lies with the VCH.

Benefice of Campsea Ashe with Marlesford, Parham and Hacheston.


Exterior Features


N doorway, nave

Round headed, of two orders (now in vestry). The doorway is of clunch.

h. of opening (without step) 2.20 m
w. of opening 0.90 m
First order

Plain and continuous with an unstopped chamfer.

Second order

Detached nook-shafts in sections on attic bases with square plinths on chamfered blocks. The capitals are double scalloped with pyramid wedges between the cones and plain roll neckings. The imposts are chamfered with a row of billet on the chamfer and tall faces. The arch is chamfered too, with a row of nailhead on the chamfer, one nailhead to each voussoir. There is no label.


The sculpture contains little in the way of diagnostic features. Billet is similarly used on chamfered imposts at St Bartholomew's, Orford, but it is extremely common on labels, e.g. at Polstead, Henley, Westhall and Little Saxham. The chamfers found on both orders point to a date afterc.1170, although the plain scallop capitals are rather backward for this date.


  • Victoria County History: Norfolk II (1906), 398-86 (on Hickling)
  • Anon., Hacheston. The History of All Saints Church. Undated (post-1997).
  • H. M. Cautley, Suffolk Churches and their Treasures. London 1937, 266.
  • D. P. Mortlock, The Popular Guide to Suffolk Churches: 3 East Suffolk. Cambridge 1992.
  • N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: Suffolk. Harmondsworth 1961, rev. E. Radcliffe 1975, 243.


Site Location
National Grid Reference
TM 312 585 
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales): Suffolk
now: Suffolk
medieval: North Elmham (c.950-1071), Thetford (1071-94), Norwich (from 1094)
now: St Edmundsbury and Ipswich
now: All Saints
medieval: not confirmed
Type of building/monument
Parish church  
Report authors
Ron Baxter