Church of St Nicholas


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
Church of St Nicholas, Church Plain, Great Yarmouth, NR30 1NE


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Statutory Address:
Church of St Nicholas, Church Plain, Great Yarmouth, NR30 1NE

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Great Yarmouth (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
TG 52435 08036


TG5208SW 839-1/11/22

GREAT YARMOUTH CHURCH PLAIN (North side) Church of St Nicholas



Parish church. Founded in association with a Benedictine Priory 1101 by Bishop Herbert de Losinga and completed in 1119. The base of the tower is early C12, the remainder rebuilt in stages throughout C13. Derelict state in C17 and C18: north nave aisle removed 1705, replaced 1847 by JH Hakewill. East end rebuilt 1813 by PH Wyatt, again rebuilt and lengthened 1862 by JP Seddon. Further restorations in 1847, 1862 and 1889 (the last by JL Pearson). Fire-bombed in 1942 and gutted completely leaving only the external walls, most of which were by then C19, rebuilt 1957-60 by Stephen Dykes Bower. Quaternary and Quarry flint, mostly knapped, chert and Lincolnshire Limestone ashlar dressings. Copper roof cladding.

PLAN: cruciform plan of nave, nave aisles, transepts with central tower, chancel and chancel aisles.

EXTERIOR: the west front presents three gables, the central one lit through three early C13 lancets over an arched and moulded doorway. Wide south aisle added c1250 showing three stepped lancets each with two Y-tracery lights and cusping of C19 design. Punched trefoils in the spandrels. Equally wide north aisle of 1847 lit through stepped lancets with Y-tracery. Four polygonal turrets with C19 pinnacles. Eight nave aisle bays, the windows to the south side of three lights each of Geometric Decorated design. Gabled south porch with an arched and moulded doorway, corner pinnacles and flushwork panelling. Inside a two-bay quadripartite rib-vault and an inner doorway with three orders of shafts carrying stiff-leaf capitals. Two three-light flowing side windows. The porch restored in 1991. The north nave aisle has seven three-light Perpendicular windows of C20 origin and a re-used C13 doorway with multiple roll mouldings and a string course carried over it. In the angle with the north transept is an altar tomb of 1851 protected by iron railings. Seven-light transept windows with Decorated tracery; angle pinnacles again. The chancel has three-light cusped north and south windows and a five-light east window by JP Seddon. In the angles between the chancel and the transepts are various low C19 and C20 vestries. The tower has an arcade of C12 arches, then a string course below round-arched windows lighting the ringing chamber. The belfry is almost all 1862, by Seddon: three tall lancets to each face, a punched parapet and corner pinnacles.

INTERIOR: four-bay nave arcade entirely of 1957, in design and execution: rectangular piers with engaged shafts and fan capitals. Boarded nave and aisle roofs. The west end has an internal wall passage. Wide arches from the aisles into the transepts and four transept arches re-cased in C19. The chancel has five aisles (since 1960), the outer two aisles separated by a four-bay octagonal arcade of 1960. Pitched boarded central roof, flat boarded aisle roofs. Chancel pulpitum with two arched C13 doors decorated with quatrefoils in the jambs and in the arch and with encircled quatrefoils in the spandrels. Norman octagonal font with a 12-sided bowl with waterleaf decoration from Highway, Wiltshire. Simple nave pews from St George's, Yarmouth, 1714. Panelled pulpit also from St George's.

Listing NGR: TG5243508036


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: North East Norfolk and Norwich, (1962), 143-146
British Geological Survey, Strategic Stone Study, accessed 11 March 2020 from


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

Images of England

Images of England was a photographic record of every listed building in England, created as a snap shot of listed buildings at the turn of the millennium. These photographs of the exterior of listed buildings were taken by volunteers between 1999 and 2008. The project was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Date: 07 Aug 2004
Reference: IOE01/13055/14
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Michael Parker. Source Historic England Archive
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