St Nicolas

About St Nicolas
St Nicolas, North Stoneham is the ancient parish church, dating from the 15th century and of considerable historical importance. It has a fine peal of bells and has a traditional ‘country church’ feel about it. There is a small but loyal congregation that meets every Sunday morning, and offer a warm welcome to all at its 10:30am service. Worship is strongly Eucharistic. St Nicolas is a popular venue for Baptisms and Weddings, being greatly valued locally as a traditional church of great attractiveness.

Bells and Music
St Nicolas’ Church Choir is a small but dedicated group of church members who assist at the singing of Sunday morning services. A weekly practice is normally held on Fridays, between 7.30 and 8.30 pm. A supplemented choir is often available to assist at weddings by request.

The organ is a single manual instrument of eleven stops, build by Positive Organ Co around 1935. A specification is available on the National Pipe Organ Register

History
The land on which St Nicolas’ Church stands (along with the rest of the parish and much of England) was originally owned by the crown. In 932 King Athelstan gave the land by charter to his Theign, Alfred, who in turn gave it to Hyde Abbey in 941. This was the beginning of the manor of Stoneham Abbitas (later North Stoneham), which would exist largely unchanged until at least 1850. Some historians have suggested that there was a church at North Stoneham as early as 885, though this is disputed. However a church certainly existed by the time of the Doomsday Book in 1086, which would have been constructed of wood. The first recorded Rector was installed in 1248.

The founding of the current stone church cannot be dated precisely. Originally there would have been only the central section of the current church, without the north or south aisles. Evidence exists to suggest the north aisle of the church was added before 1534, so the original central section must have been well before this. The earliest reference to the church having been dedicated to St Nicolas (without an ‘h’) also comes from 1534.

Further history: The Croatian StoneReformationAdditionsWWII