St Mary the Virgin

Built of local ironstone, St Mary's dates almost entirely from the 14th century, with the nave and chancel from the beginning of the century and the tower and spire from about 50 years later.

About this church

The result is a very pleasing and harmonious whole.

Externally, one of the most impressive features is the large east window, its elegant five lights crowned by an ogee head.

Internally, there is a most unusual architectural feature, a strainer arch inserted in the late 14th or early 15th century to prevent the church collapsing. Its function may be purely structural, but is was made in such a delicate, lattice like way that it looks decorative.

There are other surprises: there are at least five Green Man carvings in the church. As always, their meaning is enigmatic, and their feeling unsettling. They are often thought of as pagan figures, but many experts think they depict the fate of those who only had material lives, and are entirely Christian symbols.

Key Features

  • Captivating architecture
  • Glorious furnishings
  • Fascinating churchyard

Visitors information

  • Level access to the main areas
  • On street parking at church
  • Parking within 250m
  • Accessible toilets nearby
  • Dog friendly
  • Walkers & cyclists welcome
  • Space to secure your bike

Other nearby churches

St Peter

Despite being in the busy Nene Valley between Wellingborough and Thrapston, Irthlingborough church seen from the far side of the river retains a timeless and surprisingly isolated quality, its extraordinary tower remains the highest building in the area.

FrJamesBradley
NorthamptonshireWELLINGBOROUGHStMaryVirgin(frjamesbradleyCC-BY-2.0)1

St Mary the Virgin

A thrilling experience: Sir Ninian Comper’s masterpiece built between 1908 and 1930 is a free essay in the gothic style fearlessly mixed with classical appropriations.

Sacred Heart

One of the few late 19th century Catholic churches in Northamptonshire, the church is distinguished by some highly original details and has a largely intact and lavishly finished interior.

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