The Friends of Bromham and Sandy Lane Churches

Charity Registration Number 296477

You might like to know that you do not have to be a member of the church to join, just share an interest in historic buildings and our lovely communities of Bromham, Chittoe and Sandy Lane.

In the middle of the village of Bromham a large stone building has been standing for over 900 years.  It has been altered and added to over the years and you will recognise it especially by its spire and all the crenellations and carvings around the outside as well as all the table tombs surrounding it.  This is the parish church of St Nicholas.  Have you explored inside or attended a service? The church contains many interesting clues to the history of the village and surrounding communities as well as the development of religious worship.  Its 15th century chantry chapel is of national importance.  Its painted panelled ceiling has a greater area of original medieval paint than any ceiling in our great cathedrals.  Anyone is welcome to enter and look around.  Information is provided to help you to explore.  Tours can be arranged by contacting the telephone number below.

When you drive into the village of Sandy Lane on the way to Chippenham from Bromham, take the first turning on the right (Back Lane) and a little way up on the right you will see a thatched wooden building set back up a slight slope.  This is the church of St Mary the Virgin and St Nicholas.  It is possibly the only timber and thatch building in the country originally built as a church.  It was opened in 1892 as a mission church to counteract the rise in the number of chapels of various denominations being opened nearby.  It had close associations with the church in the nearby village of Chittoe and was re-consecrated in 1980 to hold marriage services, baptisms and funerals when the Chittoe church was being closed.  As with the parish church, anyone is welcome to enter and look around.

The Friends of Bromham and Sandy Lane Churches was founded as a Charitable Trust in March 1987 to raise and manage funds which will assist in meeting what is the constant need for repair and maintenance of the buildings and grounds of both churches and the improvement of their fittings, furnishings and amenities.   Its biggest project has been the conservation of the chantry chapel completed in 2007 at a cost of over £300,000 but other work continues.   The Friends also help with the use of both churches as centres of Christian worship and appropriate village and cultural activities for the benefit of the local community.

The Friends invite you to become a member of the charity and support its fund raising by making a donation to its funds each year (usually £10 but more if you can afford it) and supporting any fund raising events that are arranged.  If you are interested in donating some time as well, new members of the Management Committee are always welcome.  I repeat, you do not have to be a member of the church to join.

For further information please call Carol or John Drew on 01380 850908 or email jc.drew@btinternet.com.  Membership forms can be found in both churches

BOOK AVAILABLE

A History of St Nicholas Church,  Bromham, Wiltshire its Chantry Chapel and early Patrons

by John Drew 2013.

This book with illustrations, charts the history and development of Bromham and its parish church from the Saxon period to the reign of Elizabeth I. The book looks at political reforms during this period and how they forced change and affected the local community. A section of the book deals with the lords of the manor of Bromham Battle, many of whom were patronised by the Kings and Queens of England and were influential not only locally, but also nationally and in some cases internationally. This book also dispels the myths which have grown around the Bromham monastery and Battle House.

The book is priced at £8.00 and all proceeds from this publication will go to the ‘Friends of Bromham and Sandy Lane Churches’. The book is available from the author by ringing 01380 850908 or emailing jc.drew@btinternet.com.