St Mary the Virgin Church

Rector: Tiffer Robinson Tel: 01449 737197 Mob: 07789 772024 Email:

Rector of Rattlesden, Hitcham, Brettenham and Thorpe Morieux

Churchwardens: Annie Tavener, 01449 736412

The present pattern of services is as follows:-

  • There is a Family Communion on the 1st Sunday of the month at 11.15 am
  • 2nd Sunday of the month – Holy Communion (BCP) at 8.30 am
  • 3rd Sunday of the month – Mattins at 9.45am
  • When a 5th Sunday occurs, a United Benefice service is held in one of the four churches, Brettenham, Thorpe Morieux, Hitcham or Rattlesden
  • There are occasional Special Services and Evensongs – details given in the Brettenham Magazine

Picture of St Mary the Virgin ChurchThe present church building dates from the 14th century, when the nave and tower were erected. The tower, which contains a medieval bell frame and three bells, is on the south side of the nave and its base serves as a porch. Only 14 Suffolk churches were so constructed. The chancel was added during the 1420’s and the church contains examples of decorated and perpendicular styles or architecture. A major restoration was carried out in 1866 and important renovations were done in 1931, 1962, 1979 and 1995.

Notable internal features include the 14th century octagonal font, the late 17th century Communion rails and the fragments of medieval glass incorporated in a north chancel window. Late Victorian paintings of the three Magi and of Jesus with two disciples on the road to Emmaus adorn the wall on each side of the beautiful east window. The chancel contains several memorials to the Wenyeves, an ancient family associated with Brettenham for almost five centuries. In the church is a copy of the Vinegar Bible (1717), so called from a mis-spelt headline above chapter 20 of St Luke, which reads “Parable of the Vinegar” instead of “Parable of the Vineyard”.

The Lord Chancellor is patron and the registers date from 1584.