History

The History of St Mary’s Thakeham

Thakeham (Thaceham) village is noted in the Domesday book recording the Great Norman survey of 1085.  The oldest part of the village church is the nave, which dates from the mid 12th Century, the North transept is probably late 12th Century and the chancel from the 13th.

So the church is part Norman but mainly early English with windows of lancet type (slender pointed arches) and triple lancets.  Local materials were used in construction including Horsham slab for the roof which required massive English oak beams to support their weight.

The perpendicular tower is considered to be from the 16th Century and was probably built by the same masons who built the tower of Pulborough church as they are very similar.  The porch also dates from this period.

The list of Rectors of the Parish can be traced back to 1200 and is recorded on the South wall of the Nave.  Originally, the church was dedicated to St Peter and St Paul but it is not known when or indeed if a re-dedication to St Mary occurred.

We hope this short note has whetted your appetite to discover more and on visiting the church a history booklet is available to guide you around this most peaceful West Sussex church with its timeless views across the lower village and farm land beyond.