The second church on my visit to Norfolk was another that I have been to previously.
St James, Bawsey
Once the star of Time Team, This stunning Norman church is one of the easiest finds in Norfolk. If you are travelling towards Hunstanton it stands proudly on a rise in the land and can be seen for miles.
Whilst the tower and nave of current church appears to date back to the 11th century, it is possible that it dates back further than this. Some historical research suggest it may have been occupied since the Bronze age. Other parts of the church appear to have been added later (perhaps 14th/15th century).
It’s possible that the Bawsey parish dates back as far as the Palaeolithic period. Some data suggests that as the parish developed it would take on some religious importance.
Whilst the church now sits lonely on the hill, evidence found at the site tells us that it was surrounded by a village from early Saxon times until the late 16th century.
What’s interesting about this church is its location. It looks out of place on a hill these days, but when built this hill was really an island. Located close to the sea the village would have been an important harbour town.
It is believed that the church went to ruin between 1740 and 1770. Today it is a listed building and scheduled monument.
Despite the road to it now being only passable by tractor I managed to find my way up to this beautiful church. It was hot, bright, probably not the best light to take photos in, but I pushed on regardless.
It was during this stop that it became more obvious I had damage to my wide angle lens (which is now repaired) and some of the pictures took a bit more work. Here they are.
My wander was cut short by a number of teenagers out on a hike who decided to use the church walls as seats. Not wanting them to get in my pictures I packed up.
Even thought I have been here a couple of times now, this church hasn’t lost any of it’s charm. Despite its cracks and bits of stone scattered all around, it still stands as prominent as it would have done in it’s original state.
The church remains accessible and there are no restrictions getting to it. The only issue now is that the road I used previously is much damaged by constant farm use. It’s possibly passable if you have a 4×4, but I would recommend parking further down the road and walking up.
Worth a stop if you are in the area.
As always. Thanks for looking.