LeicestershirePECKLETONStMaryMagdalene(matfascioneCC-BY-SA2.0)1 MatFascione

St Mary Magdalene

A lovely building in rural Leicestershire dating from the early to mid 14th century but with some earlier as well as later features.

Peckleton, Leicestershire

Opening times

The churchwarden is always happy to open the church to visitors.


Church Road

The parish of Peckleton comprises a rural hamlet mostly on a single road plus surrounding farms and former Tooley Park estate buildings and it numbers 110 houses in all. The church has excellent acoustics, especially for orchestral and chamber music and the spoken word and consequently hosts a summer concert season.

The church has many features in Decorated Style, plus 15th & 16th century alterations; major restorations in 1869 raised the nave roof and chancel floor. A 12th century font has a later cylindrical pedestal. The west tower has six bells (gifted in 1713 by Thomas Boothby, who is thought to be the model for Squire Booby in Henry Fielding's novel 'Joseph Andrews’), surmounted by a spire. The nave has a south aisle with 16th century clerestories and Victorian north and south porches.

The stained glass comprises two small panels of 14th century fragments in the chancel picturing the Abbess of Polesworth and St Michael (with the pieces misaligned) and the 1894 east window by Charles Kempe with signature haysheaves. Above the tower arch is a hatchment of the arms of Queen Victoria, presented in 1863.

Monuments include a late 13th century female effigy and a slightly later effigy of a knight wearing chain armour, with the effigy of a lady with wimple headdress beside him. On the north wall of the chancel is the incised alabaster top from an early 16th century chest tomb showing Sir Thomas Harvey in full plate armour flanked by his two (consecutive) wives while the side of this chest tomb, with an arcade containing figures, is incorporated into the west wall of the south aisle. Tablets on the south chancel wall are to the Reverend William Wood, died 1814, and Robert Chessher, the first British orthopaedist and very famous in his day, who died in 1831. Behind the altar is a tomb effigy of a face only, slightly spooky!

The churchyard is open and contains a Grade II listed tomb (Henry Bickley) and also the grave of the rally driver, Roger Clark.

  • Captivating architecture

  • Enchanting atmosphere

  • Famous connections

  • Fascinating churchyard

  • Magnificent memorials

  • National heritage here

  • Spectacular stained glass

  • Wildlife haven

  • Accessible toilets nearby

  • Car park at church

  • Church shop or souvenirs

  • Dog friendly

  • Level access to the main areas

  • Space to secure your bike

  • Walkers & cyclists welcome

  • Normally there is a summer concert season featuring both amateur and professional musicians and the spoken word. Programme available to view (when available) at http://www.mailgen.co.uk/arts

  • Owing to Covid we have in 2020-21 not been able to have Christmas and Easter services, let alone concerts. However, we went forward with online films for our Carol Service and Easter Service which can be accessed by links on the web page at http://www.mailgen.co.uk/peckleton

  • Church of England

  • Heritage Stimulus Fund Grant, £25,000, 2021

  • Stonework and roof repairs

  • Wolfson Fabric Repair Grant, £5,000, 2021

  • Wolfson Fabric Repair Grants are awarded for urgent repair projects, based on our recommendation, to help keep churches open.

  • Gateway Grant, £5,000, 2021

  • Our Gateway Grants fund churches developing building projects and also urgent maintenance and repair projects to help keep churches open.

Contact information

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