St. Mary's Church

For many years the church tower has been in urgent need of repair and the work was finally carried out during the spring of 2003 -
pictures below

Methodist Chapel
Weslyan Chapel
Mannington Church
St Nicholas

St Mary's Church
St. Mary's church was probably originally Saxon before being rebuilt and enlarged through the gift of Aymer de Valence in the 1200s. The tower was built later in the 14th century and the building was remodelled in the 19th Century. Before the reformation it was known as St. Agnes although we are (as yet) unaware as to why the name was changed. A chapel was also originally built on the outer wall of the chancel in the 15th century but is now ruined. The chancel has rich Jacobean panelling and the pulpit is also Jacobean, being carved with an angel of a strangely classical type. The door to the nave is still on its original hinges.

Church Chapel in 1894
The Church Chapel in 1894

The Church of St Mary the Virgin is an edifice of flint in the perpendicular style, consisting of chancel, nave and a western tower containing one bell and has three stained windows; attached to the church are the ruins of a small chapel : there are 100 sittings. The register dates from the year 1560.
Kelly's 1896

November 2001  
November 2001
The ruined chapel in November 2001. Within it lies the Victorian pink granite memorial to Emily Jane, daughter ot the Revd. Robert Walpole, who died in 1888.

In 1706, the list of ornaments was very simple: one pewter flagon and one silver cup and plate.
However, three bells and their frames were noted.

In 1716 the three bells were described as all in good repair fit to Toll or Ring on ocasion.

In 1764, Thomas Robins, a church warden recorded THE COMMUNION PLATE as:
One Cup
One Plate -
both plates are bracketed with the words  of Silver
One Pewter plate
One Chelsea ? of Pewter
Three Bells with their Ropes and Stocks
One Bible, One Prayer Book
A Surplice, A Communion Table & Cloth
One Cushion for the Desk
The Belief, Lords Prayer and Ten Commandments
A Chest with Three Locks

In 1824 two bells, weighing one ton, were sold in order to finance repairs to the building, leaving just the one that remains to this day.

November 2001
November 2001

Remains of an old chapel are still visible on the north east end of the nave. Although events concerning the bells and the bridge are recorded from the 16th century in the parish registers, no catastrophe is recorded concerning the chapel.
It could have been an early guild chapel which declined after the Reformation - there is mention of a guild of Our Lady in the 16th century.

The church has a tower with one bell and on its south side is the ivy-mantled ruin of a small chapel.
White's 1845

Link to Church Music page

Major events were often written in the flyleaf of the parish registers as a record. In the first register the following is still legible, although faint with age:
Memorandum the 4th December in the year 1601 of Eliz: 44 the bell gallers were burnt downe, how it came no man could iustly tell but by great presumption as after was well knowne it was knowne to be downe by negligence of certain ringers by candle light the day that Mister Wood, Gent was returned home late London.
The said bell gallers were set up the 21st april & the 23 said month the bell frames and the bells were set and hanged up with good coste in the year of our Lord God 1602

15th February 2003
15th February 2003

The parishes of Itteringham and Mannington were formally ...consolidated into one joint benefice and one rectory on 17th March 1780 after the joint petition of Lord Walpole and the Reverend Mordaunt Leathes who both held livings in the gift of Lord Walpole. It was judged that ...the livings together make a moderate provision for a minister.

The Earl of patron of the rectory, valued in K.B. at £5.17s.1d. and consolidated with that of Mannington and incumbency of the Revd Robert Walpole of London.
Whites 1845

The old parsonage house was probably Glebe House which may have been the home of Revd John Rush. A dilapidation report on the old parsonage house, dated 31st July 1747, was presented on his death. It amounted to £14 4s 0d with most of the items relating to repairs to the barn and fence but included work on the thatch of both the barn and the house.

Each new rector was keen to ensure any repairs fell to the estate of the outgoing rector and could sue for the work to be done.

15th February 2003
15th February 2003

A project is under way to map and record all the gravestones and monuments in the churchyard. The first recording session took place in March 2003 and the data will be sorted and analysed by the end of the year.

18th January 2003 18th January 2003
Church tower repairs 18th January 2003
18th January 2003

February 2003   February 2003
Detail of the flintwork at the top of the tower February 2003

30th April 2003
30th April 2003

According to the 1851 religious census returns, on 30th March 1851, St Mary's claimed a congregation of 47 in the afternoon, including 21 Sunday School scholars and 65 in the evening including 25 Sunday School scholars. Whereas the Primitive Methodist chapel claimed 49 in the afternoon and 38 in the evening and the Wesleyan Methodist chapel on the Common, a further 46 in the afternoon and 50 in the evening. All this was from a total population of 329 and included those that went more than once.

Choir c.1935
Choir c.1935

When Mrs Lake from Hill Farmhouse died... we had to stand in the schoolyard in two lines, when the coffin came past, for the funeral... it was a carriage affair pulled with two black horses and they had big black plumes hanging over their heads... we had to stand there till it went past and they'd rung the bell in church... they'd used to ring nine for a woman... and eleven for a man and since we heard the bell toll nine times the teacher said, "Left turn, quick march!" and we had to go back in school and we weren't allowed any more play all that day.
Ruth Harrison

Revd. Ernest and Mary Summers   Revd. Ernest Summers
Revd. Ernest and Mary Summers outside Kincardine (the old police house)
Revd. Ernest Summers

Revd. Summers who died in 1974 will be remembered by many in the village. He was the last clergyman in the village to live in the old rectory, which was later sold. Apparently when living at Kincardine he used to walk back down to the old rectory to shave!

I remember that the Reverend Summers would often wear odd shoes because his dog, Monty, had buried the other ones.
Wendy Callow (Dale) - 31st March 2005 (born in the Walpole Arms)

Dedication of the new church gates in the late '50s
Dedication of the new church gates in the late '50s

Bishop of Norwich blessing the plough
The Bishop of Norwich blessing the plough
27th May 1962

Rogation procession coming down Church Road,
19th May 1963
Procession on the village green

Rogation procession 1963   Rogation procession 1963
Procession at Bintry Farm - 1 of 10 locations visited
Procession at the council houses on
Wolterton Road

Aerial view probably taken in the 1950s


Wedding group 1927
A wedding group outside the old bakehouse
18th December 1927

Rector or vicar?

Where all the tithe and glebe lands have always been used for the maintenance of the minister, the benefice is called a rectory with the cure of souls. However, if the rector was a layman, he would need another to look after the spiritual duties. "Vicarius" in Latin means "in the place of another," so the priest appointed to take the services was called a vicar. They would then share the tithes, the rector retaining the greater tithes, the vicar the smaller tithes. The benefice, or living, of Itteringham is a rectory. The right to "present" a rector to the living is called the advowson and is a legal property that can be sold and inherited.

Non-residency was the gravest and most persistent trouble of the church in the early days. Many parishes fell into the hands of lay rectors who hired low grade curates to take the services; other rectors were pluralists, holding many livings. This also meant that all but one living probably had inferior quality clergy. Whatever the cause, non-residency would lead to neglect of the chancel.

Sir Thomas Butler 1522 Parson
Laurence Sarginson 1585 - 1605 Children baptised 1587 - 1602
Sir John Goote 1597 (Mannington)
William Thackeray c1605 - 1618 (Thacquery) Also held Alby. Wife Helen died 1618
Thomas Jackson c1624 - c1665 Thomas Jackson and his wife Amy baptised their daughter Willoughbria in June 1638. Sadly the baby died the following May. Thomas also signed a petition in 1647 supporting the reintroduction of Christmas Day as a Church Festival.
Richard Burrell 1674 - 1721 .
John Rush 1721 - 1747 Also held Baconsthorpe. Died 1747
Ellis Bullemur 24 Jul 1747 - c1763 (Bullimere) Also held Mannington from 1750. Ellis Bullemur was granted a "personal union" as noted in the Institution Book for 2nd October 1750. This allowed him to hold both the rectory of Itteringham and the vicarage of Oulton. He had been admitted to Itteringham in July 1747 following the death of John Rush. Oulton had become vacant by the death of Timothy Bullemur (a relation perhaps?) It may well be that Ellis lived at Oulton as he had a curate, Benjamin French, in Itteringham. Curates: Nicholas Mathews 1747. Benjamin French (Wrench) 1749-53. John Sibbs 1762
William Barker Rush 1764 - c1777 .
Mordaunt Leathes 1777 - c1804 Also held Mannington. Itteringham consolidated with Mannington into one living in 1780. Curates: Henry Bryant 1769-93.
Ben Suckling1799 - 1802. Stephen Cook 1803. Mordaunt eventually move on to Harty on the Isle of Sheppy. This parish only had 35 souls but the living was worth £20 - compared with the combined Itteringham and Mannington livings of £7 13s 6½d
Samuel Pitman 1804 - 1807 Minister
Hon William Wodehouse 1807 - 1809 Son of John, Baron Wodehouse. Born Wyndham. Also held Carlton Forehoe (in the gift of his father) After 1816 he held a number of livings; all except Itteringham were in the gift of Lord Wodehouse.
Robert Walpole 1809 - 1856 Also held Tivetshall by 1817and Christchurch Marylebone from 1828. Built the village school in 1846. Curates: W H Marsh 1810. George C Gildert 1845. Died 1856.
Peter James Elwin 1856 - 1904 (Elwyn) Born in Norwich. Previously curate 1849-56. In 1857 the old parsonage cottage (Glebe House?) exchanged for a house north of the church, which was made into the new rectory.
William Barker Hemsworth 1904 - c1929 .
Canon W F Brown 1930 - c1931 .
Harry Percy King 1933 - 1936 .
Ernest Charles Summers 1936 - 1968 Previously rector of Kincardine O'Neil hence name of the house he moved to in 1968. (Old Police House)
. 1970 Itteringham Benefice joined with Wickmere (with Wolterton) and Little Barningham. New rectory built on the site of Church Row. Wickmere parsonage house sold.
Derek H Elton 1971 - 1978 .
Richard Scupham Osselton 1979 - 1982 .
Canon Arthur Payton 1984 1988 Priest in charge only; permission to officiate from 1988
Keith Hawkes 1990 - 1997 In 1994 Keith was also made Priest in Charge of Blickling, Edgefield, Oulton and Saxthorpe with Corpusty. From 1996 he became rector.
. Jan - Oct 1998 No rector
David Hares 1998 - Jan 2005 .
Ian Stephen Morgan Nov 2005 - .

Census 1881

Peter James Elwin (63) b.Norwich, Rector of Itteringham and Mannington
Sarah Lucy Elwin (63) b.Norwich, Rector's wife
Elizabeth Bertram (85) b.Bintry, formerly servant
Betsy Baxter (20) b.Itteringham, general servant
Census 1891 Peter James Elwin (73)
Louise ? Elwin
Lilly, general

Robert Walpole Peter James Elwyn Rev William B. Hemsworth 1904 Canon W F Brown
Robert Walpole
1809 - 1856
Peter James Elwyn
1856 - 1904
William B. Hemsworth
Canon W. F. Brown
1930 - c1931

Harry Percy King Ernest Charles Summers Derek Elton
Harry Percy King
1933 - 1936
Ernest Charles Summers
1936 - 1968
Derek Elton
1971 - 1978

Richard Osselton Keith Hawkes David Hares
Richard Scupham Osselton
1979 - 1982
Keith Hawkes
1990 - 1997
David Hares
1998 - Jan 2005

Stephen Morgan   Colin Reed
Stephen Morgan
Nov 2005 - 2008
Colin Reed 2010-2011

Robert Jackson & Thomas Robins 1706
John Birt 1716
Benjamin Lound 1723, 1729, 1735
William Body 1735
Henry Breese & Cornelius Greves
(who made a mark)
Richard & Thomas Robins 1777
John Oakes 1794, 1801
John Smith 1813
Robert Copeman & Thomas Roberts 1827
Richard Sims & George Cook 1834
George Cook & James Brown 1845
James Brown & Thomas H. Bayes 1865
Edward Slipper 1872
Fred Smith & Saul Le Grice 1879
Charles Gay 1926
Sir David Cunningham & W.R. Stackwood 1950s?
No Churchwardens 1941, 1947, 1955
Alec Hobson & Peter Fowell 1968 - 1970s
Molly Fowell & Lord Walpole 1990s to present

This incomplete list of churchwardens is taken from their signatures to the glebe terriers.
Glebe terriers are lists of glebe property which are required to be compiled every few years.

16th February 2013
16th February 2013

One of the duties of the Rector was to ensure parishioners obeyed church law - eating meat in Lent was only allowed by special licence:
Whereas Mistress Wood of Itringham in the countie of Norfolk is very sicke and weake & cannot eate fish withoute great perel to her bodye, for the better reecovery of her health, I, Laurence Sarginson, parson of the towne of Itringham do licence the said Mistress Wood being within my parishe and charge to eat fleshe during the tyme of her sicknes according to the statute therein provided.
In witness whereof I have herewith set my hand and seale the twentieth day of February in the two and fortith year of the Reigne of Elizabeth, by me Laurence Sarginson.

If you have any memories, anecdotes or photos please let us know and we may be able to use them to update the site. By all means telephone 07836 675369 or

Copyright © Jonathan Neville 2004

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