This peaceful and remote churchyard, surrounded on all sides by fields supports a healthy diversity of flowering plants, grasses, invertebrates and birds.
Within a designated conservation area to the south of the church you can discover three of the ‘churchyard dependent’ wildflowers: Lady’s bedstraw, germander speedwell and meadow saxifrage. In addition, a whole range of species is scattered throughout that are well worth spotting: yarrow, self-heal, lesser trefoil, common sorrel, and field wood-rush are all also found in the conservation area. To the west of the church, another diverse path supports ox-eye daisy, cuckoo flower, sheep’s sorrel and bluebells. The north-side of the churchyard is damp and shaded, and this is reflected in the presence of liverworts, ferns and mosses, including springy turf moss and the notable maidenhair spleenwort.
All Saints Church dates back to the late 13th century and like most churches of its age has had a number of later additions and alterations. The nave and chancel are predominantly 15th century. Of note are the impressive redbrick buttresses supporting the truncated tower of contrasting carstone. The central eastern window inscribes a parable of the Good Samaritan, and it was erected in memory of the Revd. John Freeman who went above and beyond to save the church and restore it at the turn of the 19th century. Very pretty and also worth a look is the millennium window depicting wildflowers.
The octagonal font, carved in India was presented to the church in 1853 by Major Markham Kittoe in dedication to his young daughter. There is some interesting communion silver, including the extremely old “Bawsey Cup” from the 1600’s beholding the King’s Lynn assay mark. In 2012 a new baptism cup was commissioned and named ‘The Ashwicken Shell’- being cast from a real shell, in solid silver.
Best time to visit
In order to see the greatest diversity of flora and insect life, the best time to visit the churchyard is Spring-Summer. For the meadow saxifrage, cuckoo flower and germander speedwell visit April-June, and to see the oxeye daisies and lady’s bedstraw visit June- September.
To find out about any opportunities to help manage the site, please contact the church warden: