Friston Church - a short history
St Mary the Virgin
This is an 11th Century Grade I Listed building, the earliest parts being of Saxon origin. Although originally dedicated to St. Mary the Virgin it became the Church of St. James for about 400 years until its original name was restored in 1957.
During the Second World War the Air Force Personnel based at the local airfield used the church for their services.
It was refurbished in 2001 and a new East window, 'The Ascension', designed by local artist Jane Patterson was installed in 2002. There are many notable features of the building to be seen and a descriptive leaflet is available in the church.
Important features include a fine crown post roof to the Nave, 16th Century font, the Queen Anne pulpit, two 17th Century Selwyn monuments and memorial brasses to the Selwyn family.
The composer Frank Bridge, in whose memory the church door was given, is buried in the churchyard and there is an interesting Tapsell gate as at East Dean church.
The church was described as A Jewel of Sussex by the Diocesan Advisory Committee when they visited to inspect the new lighting scheme and the new window.
In the Sussex Heritage Awards 2004 each of these new features was awarded a prestigious Highly Commended Certificate.
Two awards for one church!
As with East Dean Church, however, the church is more than a building: it is a living community of faith. We invite you to come along and discover more!
This page last modified on: 18 December 2010