St Thomas' Church, Winchelsea

Dedicated to St. Thomas the Martyr, Archbishop of Canterbury, after his brutal murder in Canterbury Cathedral in the 12th century.

Standing proud on a two acre plot in the centre of Winchelsea, records show there has been a church of St Thomas here since 1215.

Construction in stone began in the late 13th century with raw materials from Caen, Normandy, Sussex marble and oak for the supporting timbers.

Over the centuries, St Thomas was damaged by war and social decline leaving the church as we know it today. Restored during the 19th and 20th centuries, magnificent Douglas Strachan stained glass windows were added after the Great War of 1914-18, remodeling the church forever.

Inside, look for the five medieval tombs and marble carvings, while outside, see if you can find the tomb of Spike Milligan – 'Goon but never forgotten'.

The very picturesque village of Winchelsea has been ravaged by severe storms over a millennium, being a far cry from its humble beginnings. It was the first of its kind to be laid out on a grid system and has had notable residents such as Lord Nelson.

Winchelsea can be found on the A259 from Hastings or Rye.

Note: St Thomas' is the cross by the 38 on the map.

winchelsea9 (1)

Map copyright Ordnance Survey