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Northampton, Holy Sepulchre

Medieval church in Northampton

From the outside the church initially presents itself as a confident 19th century re build of a medieval foundation. This is the outcome of Sir Giles Gilbert Scott’s restoration of the 1860’s. As you head towards the porch though your eyes are taken by a strange circular element between tower and nave. Step through that porch and the surprise awaits you. You enter an eight sided building which reflects not only on the church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem but also the famous re - interpretations of it, Charlemange’s chapel at Aachen, and San Vitale in Ravenna. Such churches in England, of which there are very few are normally associated with the Knights Templars. Here though the decision to build a round church in about 1110 was that of Simon de Senils, Earl of Northampton, who had taken part in the first crusades. The great space rises up three floors with a marvellous wooden beam ceiling above. In the 13th century the church was extended and now you rise from the circular area up to a central nave flanked on both sides by double aisles and centred on a Victorian chancel. The church has a strong connection with the military life of the county. Note the highly unusual stained glass window by Mayer and Co. of Richard Coeur de Lyon at the battle of Joppa in the north aisle adjacent to two late Morris and Co. windows. Holy Sepulchre Restoration Trust has just launched it's new web site of archival/events/information see; Photo credit to John Kightley MBE Director/Secretary Holy Sepulchre Restoration Trust.

Please refer to the Glossary for any terms in the text that you are unfamiliar with.

Contact & Opening Times

Sheep St, Northampton, NN1 2LY|
[email protected] |
01604 230316

Opening Times


The church is open on Saturday afternoons from 2pm until 4pm from May until the end of September. Private openings by arrangement only, please contact – 01604 754782


Contact Details


Telephone: 01604 754782

Email: [email protected]

Explore the area

Click the pins on the map to see other attractions nearby

Visitor Information & Facilities

  • Baby changing
  • Coach parking
  • Group tours
  • Meeting / conference space
  • Wheelchair access

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