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The Norman church of Northampton
St Peter's Church on Marefair
St Peter's Church on Marefair

People across Northampton are being encouraged to learn more about the Norman history at St Peter's Church.

The building on Marefair, is part of a group of small churches across the country to still have its original Norman architecture intact.

Although the church is not used for daily services, it's still open to visitors.

Local historians and archaeologists want people to make more use of the church and learn about its history.

During the Norman conquest, William the Conqueror ordered a number of castles and churches to be built across the country.

The most famous of these castles include Northampton Castle and Rockingham Castle in Corby.

In Northamptonshire, four mot and bailey castles were built in Towcester, Alderton, Long Buckby and Wollaston, all of which are still accessible to the public.

The most significant legacy left by the Normans were the number of churches they built and how they controlled Saxon life through them.

Iain Soden from Northamptonshire Archaeology says, "The church would have played a vital part during the Norman invasion in Northampton."

A number of churches across Northamptonshire still have examples of their Norman heritage from doors to the chevron patterns inside the buildings, which are a typical Norman design.

The most famous of these churches is St Peter's in Marefair, which is one of a very few number of churches across England and Wales to still have most of its Norman influence and architecture still on show and in tact.

Iain believes, "We should be very humbled to still have this incredible Norman structure still standing in Northampton, so that we can both admire it and learn about it."

Although it is no longer used for daily services, St Peter's is still open to the public to visit and to encourage them to look at its Norman structure.

The church is run by the Churches Conservation Trust.




SEE ALSO
How the Normans built Rockingham
11 Aug 10 |  People & Places
The Norman legacy in Northampton
09 Aug 10 |  People & Places
Rise of black majority churches
01 Jul 10 |  Religion & Ethics

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