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St Mary, Bridgham, Norfolk

(52°26′9″N, 0°52′28″E)
TL 955 859
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Norfolk
now Norfolk
medieval St Mary
now St Mary
  • Jill A Franklin
05 Jun 1990

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Feature Sets

Now comprising a nave and chancel, St Mary's also appears to have had a W tower of which no fabric now survives. The church, which has a fine 15thc font and double piscina, also houses the reset remains of a pillar piscina, which constitutes the only Romanesque feature at the site.


Bridgham, in the hundred of Shropham, was held by the Abbot of Ely both before and after the Conquest. The Domesday Survey states that the manor of Bridgham had one priest and held thirty acres in nearby Roudham. According to the Domesday Survey, Roger Bigod (d. 1107), sheriff of Norfolk, once held a Freeman in Bridgham, but Bigod's claim was successfully challenged by the Abbot of Ely. The inquiry into the holdings of Ely Abbey (IE), conducted very soon after the Domesday Survey of 1086, recorded that these included 12 acres of free land and one church in Bridgham, not mentioned in Domesday Book. Prior Solomon and the convent of Ely, which became a cathedral in 1109, instituted John the doctor as persona (parson) of the church of Bridgham, with the consent of Bishop Nigel, c. 1158-1169.



Piscinae/Pillar Piscinae


Pevsner does not record the pillar piscina.


S. Margeson, F. Seillier and A. Rogerson, The Normans in Norfolk, Norwich 1994, 94.

T. Williamson, The Origins of Norfolk, Manchester 1993, 154.

N. Pevsner and B. Wilson, The Buildings of England: Norfolk: North-West and South, Harmondsworth, 1962, revised 1999, 2: 63, 218.

C. Harper-Bill ( ed.) English Episcopal Acta VI. Norwich 1070-1214, Oxford 1990, 74-5, no. 87.

P. Brown ( ed.) Domesday Book. Norfolk, 2 vols, London and Chichester 1984.