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Churches

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ALL HALLOWS by the TOWER

All Hallows by the Tower was founded in 675AD - it is the oldest church in the City of London. An arch from this original church remains and, beneath that, a fragment of Roman pavement. The church has looked after the bodies of those beheaded on nearby tower hill, including Thomas More's and, from the tower of the church, Samuel Pepys watched London burn in 1666. The founder of Pennsylvania, William Penn, was baptised here and notable weddings included those of John Quincy Adams, 6th President of the USA, and Judge Jeffries, famous for his 'bloody assizes' in the aftermath of the Battle of Sedgemoor of 1685. All Hallows survived the Great Fire, thanks to the efforts of Pepys' friend Admiral Penn, but was fairly comprehensively bombed during WW2 and rebuilt in the 1950s. A long-serving vicar of the church was 'Tubby' Clayton, founder of 'Toc H', the rest and recuperation centre for troops in Belgium during WW1.

Byward Street
London
EC3R 5BJ
Tudor
All Hallows by the Tower's website
Tower of London
Church authorities
ALL SAINTS’, Brixworth

All Saints', Brixworth, is the largest surviving Anglo-Saxon church in Britain. The Saxon builders re-used Roman bricks when constructing their arches. It is also known that a monastery was founded on the site toward the end of the 7th century, sacked by the Danes. The church includes Norman features, an 11th century round tower and a 15th century spire. It is also famous for the Brixworth Relic - a human throat bone that allegedly once belonged to St Boniface.

Church Street
Brixworth
Northamptonshire
NN6 9DF
Saxon
Brixworth - All Saints' church
6 or 7 miles north of Northampton on the A508
Church authorities
ALL SAINTS’, Earls Barton

A very special church dating from 10th century. The tower is the main survivor from this period and contains some unique Anglo-Saxon architectural decoration. The rest of the church was built between the 12th and 15th centuries. One of several Saxon churches in the area.

High Street
Earls Barton
Northamptonshire
NN6 0JG
Saxon
Earls Barton - our finest Saxon church tower
All Saints' website
Brixworth church
Church authorities
BURROW MUMP

A natural hill rising out of the Somerset levels, with the ruins of a church, St Michael's, on top, giving the place an evocative feel. There was probably a castle on the site once. Burrow Mump also has possible associations with King Alfred, who hid in the marshes around nearby Athelney to escape the Danes.  It is now a war memorial, dedicated to all those from Somerset who died in the First and Second World Wars.

Post Code is for the nearby King Alfred pub. Small free car park at the foot of the hill.

A361
Burrowbridge
Somerset
TA7 0RB
Georgian
Willow and Wetland Visitor Centre. Glastonbury and Wells aren't far.
National Trust
CARTMEL PRIORY

Apart from a gatehouse off Cartmel's village square, the Priory Church of St Mary and St Michael is all that remains of the priory founded in 1190 by William Marshall, Earl of Pembroke, and one of the premier knights of the realm. The Augustinian priory was dissolved in 1536, but, having nowhere else to worship, the village was allowed to keep the church. Hence, for a parish church, it is very grand - with an enormous east window and many fascinating features and fine monuments.

Cartmel
Cumbria
LA11 6PU
Medieval
Cartmel Priory website
Holker Hall, Levens, Sizergh Castle
Church authorities
CHRISTCHURCH GREYFRIARS

A tranquil city garden on the site of the former 13th century Franciscan church of Greyfriars. It was the burial place of four queens and was destroyed in the Great Fire of 1666. A replacement church, designed by Christopher Wren, was destroyed by bombing in 1940, though the west tower still stands.

King Edward Street
London
EC1A 7BA
Modern
St Pauls
Local Authority
GLASTONBURY TOR

Glastonbury Tor is a magical place, with links to Celtic mythology and the legend of King Arthur. Some say this conical hill, rising from the Somerset levels, is the Isle of Avalon. Now topped with the roofless tower of 14th century St Michael's church, there is evidence of other structures on the site since at least the 5th century and it has been used by man since prehistoric times. The Tor has distinctive, but unexplained, terracing on it. The last abbot of Glastonbury Abbey and two of his fellow monks were executed on the summit in 1539.

Post code is approximate.  It is a walk to the top and there are no facilities.  Parking in Glastonbury, cross the A361 and follow the path from either Dod Lane or the bottom of Wellhouse Lane. You can take a circular route.

Near Glastonbury
Somerset
BA6 8YA
Dark Ages
A journey to Glastonbury Tor
Glastonbury Abbey, Glastonbury Lake Village, Cadbury
National Trust
HEAVENFIELD

Site of the Battle of Heavenfield in 634AD between the Anglo-Saxon Northumbrians under King Oswald and the British led by Cadwallon.  There is a small church, St Oswald's, on the site.  It also marks the start (or end) of a long distance footpath between Heavenfield and Holy Island (Lindisfarne).

About a mile east of Chollerford on the B6318
Northumberland
NE46
Dark Ages
Heavenfield
Hadrian's Wall, Chesters Roman Fort
Unknown
HOLY TRINITY, Bosham

Bosham is the oldest Christian site in Sussex and is mentioned by Bede, but settlement in the area probably goes back to at least Roman times. The oldest part of Holy Trinity, Bosham, is Saxon - the church is featured in the Bayeux Tapestry - with Norman and later medieval additions. A notable feature of the church is a grave, thought to be that one of King Cnut's daughters, who drowned in a nearby millstream. There is also speculation that Harold, last king of the Saxon English, was buried in the church after the Battle of Hastings.

High Street
Bosham
Nr Chichester
West Sussex
PO18 8LY
Medieval
Bosham, Cnut, the king's daughter and Harold
Holy Trinity, Bosham's, website
Weald & Downland Open Air Museum, Fishbourne Roman Palace
Church authorities
KELD CHAPEL

Tiny chapel, situated in a rural hamlet, thought to date from 16th century and to have been a remote chantry chapel for Shap Abbey. The chapel has been used as a cottage and for meetings. Instructions for obtaining the key will be found on the chapel door.

Keld Lane
Keld
Cumbria
CN10 3NW
Tudor
Entry on the National Trust website
Shap Abbey, Clifton Hall
National Trust