Church of St Mary Wigford

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Review type

Things to do


Date of travel

September, 2016

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Travelled with

On your own

Reasons for trip

St Mary Wigford predates “Lincoln Cathedral”: and is described as the oldest church in Lincoln. It is set at the junction of Wigford Way and High Street, close to the railway crossing and is surrounded by mature trees.

The large stone building near the church is St Mary’s conduit and was built from stones from the de Kyme chantry of the now demolished nearby Friary of White Friars. It supplied drinking water until 1906 when it was replaced by the “Westgate water tower.”:

The tower is pre-Conquest and has the characteristic Saxon long and short corner stones, Saxon doorway and a Saxon window. It would have had a wooden church attached to it. The crenellations at the top were added in the C13th when the stone church was built.

To the right of the doorway is a Roman memorial stone, which was recycled as a dedication stone. This had a new inscription carved on it which translated reads “Eirtrig had me built and endowed to the glory of Christ and St. Mary”. Little is known of Eirtrig who was probably a successful merchant.

The nave, north aisle and chancel date from the late C13th, replacing an earlier building. The south aisle and vestry are C19th.

Inside it is a large fairly plain church. The most memorable feature is the green ceiling. At the back of the nave, a Saxon doorway leads into the base of the tower. Another Saxon doorway leads into the vestry.

Inside the north doorway is a fairly battered alabaster Grantham tomb to Sir Thomas and his wife, which was moved here from another church.

The carved font is C14th and is in the north aisle, with the Lady Chapel beyond it. The window has a stained panel of Christ Crucified. The tomb on the north wall is that of Lady de Kyme. Her husband was a benefactor of the church. It is separated from the chancel by a wrought iron screen. This has a sedilia, piscina and aumbry cupboard.

I visited the church during the Heritage Open days when it was being used for concerts. A service is held in the Lady Chapel every Wednesday at 12.30 and the church hosts many activities. For many years, the church was used as a centre for the homeless. It is now open Monday to Saturday from 10-4 serving coffee in the nave. There is no parking by the church although there are pay and display car parks close by. The post code is LN5 7EQ and the grid reference is SK 975710.

There are more pictures “here.”:


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