All Saints', Burnham Thorpe

All Saints' church is situated across the green from the village's pub (the first one to be called the Lord Nelson).  The original building dates back to the 13th century.  It was renovated in the l840s and was completely restored in time for the centenary of Trafalgar (1905). 

The interior was lime washed in the late 1990s and is light, bright and airy.  Most of the seating is on individual chairs.  This lends itself to versatile usage. The capacity is approximately two hundred, plus seating in the choir stalls.

The acoustics and lay out make an excellent venue for concerts and visiting choirs, which in past years have included the Norwich Cathedral Choir, the European Youth Chamber Orchestra, the Hatcham Orchestra and a performance of Haydn’s Nelson Mass. We also have an annual visit by the Richeldis Singers (based at Walsingham) for a choral evensong, usually in July.

The church has a loop system.

Burnham Thorpe Village

Burnham Thorpe nestles in the valley of the River Burn. It is situated about a mile and a half from Burnham Market.

Although not a large population, a healthy percentage of the village's residents is of school age.  This adds to the vitality of village life both in church and outside.  Several pieces of play equipment comprise the play area at one end of the village green.

The village green has ample room for major team games such as cricket and football.  There is also a well-used bowls green adjacent to it, near the pub.

The Nelson Memorial Hall

The hall was built in the 1890s and licensed for worship while the church was being renovated in time for the centenary of Trafalgar.  When, in 1901, the services were once again held in All Saints', the hall was leased back to the villagers as a parish room. 

Currently the hall is used for village meetings, table tennis, toddlers music group, village and church activities and can be hired for private functions.

Admiral Lord Nelson's Birthplace

Admiral Nelson’s father, Edmund, was the Rector from 1755 to 1803 and lived with his family at the old parsonage (pulled down in 1803).  This is where Horatio Nelson was born and where he spent his childhood.

Returning to the village only occasionally during leave ashore in England, he nonetheless lived here 1788-93 while being held in reserve on half-pay.  He returned to sea when given command of HMS Agamemnon, which was recommissioned the day before the outbreak of the Nepolionic Wars.

The graves of Nelson's mother and father are situated on the north side of the church chancel; a brother and sister are buried in the churchyard.

Key facts

  • 13th Century church; largest of the benefice churches.
  • Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson baptised here, lived at the rectory of the time, as his father was rector.
  • Church renovated for the centenary of Trafalgar.