LincolnshireHome / Church Life / Big Ted / St Mary's Churches / Lincolnshire

I've visited lots of St Mary's Churches in Lincolnshire. Click on a picture to read a bit more about the church (and maybe see more pictures of me!).

Alvingham [North Cockerington] (9)


Claxby (19)


Covenham St Mary (10)


East Barkwith (189)


Evedon (179)


Fotherby (12)


Hainton (190)


Hatcliffe (7)


Hogsthorpe (17)


Knaith (186)


Ludborough (11)


Mablethorpe (18)


Manby (13)


Marshchapel (15)


Marston (180)


North Somercotes (14)


North Witham (139)


Riseholme (188)


Stamford (136)


Stow (185)


Swinstead (184)


Syston (177)


Thoresway (8)


Wainfleet St Mary (16)


Welton (187)


West Torrington (191)


Wilsford (178)


Go back to my St Mary's Churches page


9. Alvingham [North Cockerington]

This was an interesting church. I had to walk past a mill pond then through a smelly farmyard. Then, when I got to the church, there were actually two churches, not one. One church was called St Mary's and the other was called St Adelwold's (what a really funny name).

St Mary's was actually the parish church of North Cockerington (another funny name!), which is the next-door village (St Adelwolds's is the parish church of Alvingham), but both churches used the same churchyard. The church doesn't have an organ, it has a harmonium instead. This is me inspecting it.

Sadly, St Mary's isn't used any more, so it's looked after by some nice people called The Churches Conservation Trust (go to their website).

19. Claxby

The last St Mary's church I visited on my trip to Lincolnshire was in a place called Claxby near to Market Rasen.

I went inside the church and I played in the pulpit.  It had weird holes in it and I tried to climb through one of them and pretended to get stuck. It was really very, very funny!

This was my 19th church and I needed a serious snooze by this time (not to mention a clean T-shirt).

10. Covenham St Mary

I was not very happy in this photo, can you tell? Somebody (actually, it was Auntie Fiona) made me sit on a really prickly holly hedge.

189. East Barkwith

big ted and poppiesThis St Mary's has a noticeboard and a handy wall to sit on. We went inside and I found lots of leaflets to read on the font.

There were also a lot of poppies around the pulpit (you might be able to see them behind me in my font photo). I decided to look a bit closer at them; I'm not sure red is my colour.

179. Evedon

This is a funny little church a long way down a narrow road (that the Sat Nav lady didn't know about! "Here be dragons" - or bears to be really accurate - snigger!). There wasn't even a noticeboard and we couldn't go inside. But Uncle Les took a photo of me outside the church sitting on a handy headstone.

12. Fotherby

I went inside this church and found that as well as being a church, it's sometimes used as a post office! Isn't that a clever thing to do?

190. Hainton

Another church without a sign or noticeboard! The church was open with lots of purple people walking round it. [It was a group on pilgrimage from Louth to Lincoln, they were wearing purple t-shirts, Big Ted]

7. Hatcliffe

St Mary's in Hatcliffe did have a handy fence for me to sit on while having my photo taken by their notice board.

I've got my white t-shirt on again now, I think it looks much smarter than the green one (but it does show the gravy and chocolate).

17. Hogsthorpe

This was a nice church and it had lots to look at. There were also a lot of photos in an album. I had a good look at it but I couldn't see a bear in any of them.

That can't be right - every church should have a bear for the children to hug, and to be in the photos ('specially if he's a photogenic bear like me!).

186. Knaith

This was quite a contrast to Stow (which is knearby [snigger!]). It's quite a little church next to a manor house (we had quite a job finding it too).

The church is next to the River Trent as well. It doesn't have a tower as it collapsed at some point and they didn't feel like building a new one.

11. Ludborough

This wasn't as bad as the holly hedge, but it still wasn't great. I got my t-shirt a bit dirty and there was a nasty nail on the top of the board.

18. Mablethorpe

What a really colourful sign this one is! Perhaps our sign in Plumtree could be coloured like this instead of just boring blue. You'd see it from right down at the bottom of the hill. And we could add flashing lights to make it really exciting.

13. Manby

This is the notice board outside St Mary's church in Manby. As you can see it didn't say very much.

I went inside this church too. It has a really interesting wooden thing called a "Churchwarden's Staff". I had my picture taken holding it but Uncle Les couldn't get the fancy top bit in the photo (I'm glad he centred his photo on me instead).

Auntie Fiona says the staff was used for prodding sleepy bears to make sure they stay awake through the sermon (I'm sure she was just joking though).

15. Marshchapel

It was a bit rainy here and I didn't want to sit on the wall very much because it was very wet and slimy (and I really don't like having a wet bottom - do you?).

180. Marston

Much more sensible; a noticeboard (without the church's name, sigh) and the church was open.

Here Uncle Les took a rather splendid photo of me on the font, it's all backlit and splendid!

14. North Somercotes

This church had lots to read on its notice board and Uncle Les says it even has a Facebook page. You can see it here: (go to their Facebook page).

139. North Witham

The notice board here is attached to the main gate so I had to peer down from atop a spike to see it (not an elegant pose for a bear of my calibre).

Sadly I couldn't get inside this St Mary's. But I sat on a half pillar in the porch for a very artistic photo showing off my splendid fur in the sun (it was still cold though so I kept my hat on).

188. Riseholme

This church is on a college campus, surrounded by greenhouses and cows. [Riseholme College is a Further and Higher Education college, specialising in Agriculture and Animal Management, Big Ted].

It doesn't have a sign but it has a photogenic window in the porch just right for a photogenic bear.

136. Stamford

This is a big church in the middle of the market town of Stamford. There are lots of other churches round about.

I had a good look round and found the font was very comfy to sit on.

185. Stow

This is a HUGE church. It's also called Stow Minster (a sort of cathedral) 'cos that's what it used to be.

Uncle Les tried to get all the church in the photos, but I would have looked very small indeed (and I'm the star of these web pages).

So I had a quiet word with him and he left a lot of the church out (I've had this problem before!).

184. Swinstead

The sign for this St Mary's wasn't very encouraging, and we couldn't get the gate open. But we found another way in and discovered that the church was open!

The font has a very pointy cover and it was slippery, but I hung on really tight for my photo. (I think I'll add it to my "intrepid bear" collection of photos!)

177. Syston

This is a lovely church in the middle of the village. Sadly I couldn't go inside it but I did have a good look around outside. I found a really prickly green thing that hurt my paw. Later Auntie Fiona opened it up and showed me inside - it contained three nuts [It was an under-developed sweet chestnut, Big Ted. Not to be confused with a horse chestnut or conker.]

8. Thoresway

It started snowing when I visited Thoresway which I didn't like at all.

I was really cold so I jumped up and down a lot to keep warm. Luckily Uncle Les managed to take my photo at just the right time for the sign for the church to be in it. (Dear Reader, I apologise that I look a bit scruffy in this photo. I've had my T-shirts shortened since then so they fit me much better now and don't look like frocks. I've also started wearing trousis.)

16. Wainfleet St Mary

This church was down a really long narrow road and took ages to get to. I was driven through Skegness to get to it and I learned lots more rude words 'cos the SatNav lady got lost - twice!

187. Welton

raf commemorative windowThis St Mary's has a very satisfactory noticeboard (unlike some other churches I've visited recently) although I do seem to be sitting a long way away from it.

Inside, I couldn't sit on the font 'cos there was a big arrangement of flowers on it and there wasn't room for me to squeeze in. I seem to be rather small in this photo - Uncle Les messing around again!

There was a really friendly lady curate here called Carol who said "Hello" to me. We had a long chat and she told me a bit about the church.

It has a very special window commemorating the Royal Flying Corps, the Royal Naval Air Service, the Royal Air Force and the Royal Flying Cross. It contains pictures of aeroplanes from the First World War, and was designed by Messrs Burlison & Grylls in 1921 (that's a coincidence, they designed some of my St Mary's windows as well!).

191. West Torrington

This St Mary's is closed now - apparently it's for sale for £30,000 but you can't use it as a house. You get to it up a little grassy path and through a couple of gates.

178. Wilsford

We went inside this church and I looked around and sat on the font for a photo (of course).

There was a really interesting display all about the men from the village who had died in World War 1.


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