Scarning Church

St Peter and St Paul Parish Church

The parish church of St Peter and St Paul has occupied its prominent position in the village of Scarning since the 12th century and there have been Rectors of Scarning since 1299. The whole building, which is mainly in the perpendicular style, was extensively restored in 1869, when the gable of the chancel roof was raised to its original pitch for £1000. In 1894 the tower was restored, the nave buttresses were entirely rebuilt and new churchyard gates were fitted - all at the expense of Dr Jessopp.
The single gate was replaced in the 1950s by the Scarning Mothers' Union and was refurbished in 2007 in memory of Fred and Lilian Hoskins. The churchyard was levelled and re-seeded in 1970 and Scarning Parish Council contributes to its upkeep.The church and vestry were re-roofed in 1979.The double gates were replaced by the PCC in the 1980s. You will find a lot more information about the church and its history here.

The Parish Office, Church House, Church Street, Dereham NR19 1DN
open 9am-12noon, Tuesday-Friday
telephone 01362 693143

If you would like to know more about the Dereham and District Team Ministry click this link: or if you would like to know more about the church click this link: history and architecture of the church

Team Rector

Sally Theakston 


day off: Thursday

Assistant Clergy:

The Revd Jane Nursey


day off: Wednesday

The Revd Kenneth Pilgrim


The Revd Jenny Taylor


Team Vicar

Rev’d Adrian Aubrey-Jones

Team Curate


Alan Glister


Ron Steward


PCC Secretary

Sue Rockley


Parish Office


Parochial Church Council

Alan Glister and Ron Steward are our Churchwardens – with Alf Webdale and Charles Steward as deputy Churchwardens.  Mike Quinnell is the treasurer and Sue Rockley is the secretary to the church council.   Other members of the PCC are: Corinne Steward, Stephen Archer, Charles Pope, Tricia Foreman, Diana Rowland and Tim Farnham.


A warm welcome is assured to everyone who would like to join us for a service at 11.15am each Sunday.

1st Sunday Morning Prayer – Common Worship
2nd Sunday Common Worship
3rd Sunday Parish Communion – sometimes with Baptism
4th Sunday Parish Communion (1662)
5th Sunday Songs of Praise– Lay led

The latest Dereham Benefice newsletter which has details of Church Services is available on the Benefice website and can be downloaded directly by clicking on the following link: The newsletter for each week is usually uploaded on the preceding Thursday.

Services May 2016

1st Morning Prayer-Alan Barrett
8th Parish Communion -  Kenneth Pilgrim

15th Family Service -Dominique Turnham
22nd Festival  Service
-Sally Theakston
29th Songs of Praise– Lay led

Coffee Mornings throughout 2015 have now become an integral part of village life.  The hubbub experienced in the Village Hall on any one of these occasions is exceptional and it is so pleasing to see people come from far and wide to enjoy a coffee and cake, perhaps purchase local produce/cakes but, more importantly, experience a relaxing, leisurely morning with like-minded villagers.

With the instigation of bacon butties, which have become a roaring success, we have again exceeded expectation with raising funds for the Church.   The total for the year, including the Christmas Craft Fair, was £3,825.91 making a grand total of £8,536.46 since inception in July 2013.  
Once again, may I thank everyone who has supported this very worthwhile venture for the village – without you it would not happen. Well done for what has become a most enjoyable occasion.
Coffee Mornings in 2016 will continue to be the second Saturday of each month at 10 am through to November.
Saturday 9th April 2016
Saturday 14th May 2016
Saturday 11th June 2016
Saturday 9th July 2016
Saturday 13th August 2016
Saturday 10th September 2016
Saturday 8th October 2016
Saturday 12th November 2016
Please take time to come and meet some of your fellow villagers and enjoy a cup of coffee/tea, a cake and a chat.
If you would like to help in any way please contact Tricia Foreman on 01362  687082.  All funds raised are for Scarning Church


Would you like to ring those bells?

Scarning's  bellringers are making excellent progress after deciding to learn the skill and they want more people to join them. Anyone who wants to get involved should telephone Tricia Foreman, tower secretary on 01362 687082.

Scarning Church Restoration Appeal

The PCC and Incy Wincy Spider would like to thank everyone for their generous support.
The good news - We are delighted with the response to the appeal and have raised the £25,000 required in match funding for the initial grant offered by English Heritage. This has been achieved through many fund raising events, donations and offers of grants from other charities. In the meantime we will continue fund raising to ensure that we can do as much of the urgent work as possible.

Waste paper collection -
Charles Hewson has kindly offered to run a waste paper collection

The Bishop of Norwich with the rector, Sally Theakston and two churchwardens, Ron Steward and Alan Glister after the  re-dedication service in the church on 30th June 2015

Song Book

 Frank Foreman has written a number of songs about life in the village (see below), and the lyrics are now available in book form at £5 and CD at £5 Both will be on sale at the Village Hall Coffee Mornings and other functions, at the church on Sundays or direct from Frank. All profits will go to the Church Restoration Fund, with a donation to Parkinsons UK. For more information please contact Frank on 687082, or


It's Springtime in Scarning , the flowers re-appear,
Lambs find their voices it's lovely to hear.
Clocks all spring forward as daylight extends.
It's getting warmer too.

Chorus These are the seasons they come round so fast, A new one beginning, another just past. The weather is varied with wind rain and sun. Snow in the winter too.

Summer in Scarning the weather is hot.
There's fruit in the hedgerows, a bountiful crop.
The fields are all golden, the skies are all blue.
There's passing showers too.
Autumn in Scarning, the trees lose their leaves.
Winter draws closer theres a Chill breeze.
Clocks all go backwards as daylight recedes.
 It's getting colder too.
Winter in Scarning, there's snow on the ground,
The birds are all hungry they forage around.
The East wind is freezing, Jack Frost's in the air.
There's rain in abundance too.
Chorus Repeat Chorus
© Copyright 2012 FIF

Scarning Church

This picture shows the church as it is today.

Scarning Church

This reproduction of an old postcard showing the church as it was prior to the first World War. The building on the extreme right of this picture was the old Post Office on the other side of Chapel lane.

Report to Scarning Annual Parish Meeting  April 2015

The PCC was still some way short of securing sufficient funds for the restoration project at the church involving high level repairs and the installation of a new rainwater system.

English Heritage funded the lion's share of the project. On the back of the success of the local fund raising campaign, we were able to secure grants from the National Churches Trust, the Wolfson Foundation and the Garfield Weston Foundation to enable the work to go ahead. it began in July but unfortunately has been delayed for a number of reasons and is due to be finished in the next few weeks.

As is inevitable with such a project, there have been some unexpected difficulties including an east wall which was in a very poor state of repair. Fortunately savings have been made in other areas so the project is expected to come in within budget.

The PCC would once again like to record its thanks to everyone who helped in any way with this project. We are delighted that the Bishop of Norwich is coming to Scarning on 30 June at 7 pm to lead a special service to mark the end of the project. We hope that members of the Parish Council will come along to the service.

The PCC would also like to record its thanks to the Parish Council for the maintenance of the churchyard and clock. This contribution is a Significant help to the PCC and is much appreciated.

On behalf of the village, the PCC would also like to thank the Parish Council for the Christmas tree which, together with the lights on the Village Hall, makes a splendid focal point over the Christmas season.
Significant events for the church during the year included:
    the splendid Flower Festival on the theme of Inspiration
    a confirmation service for four members of the congregation
    the special service commemorating the beginning of the First World War
    the re dedication of the memorial to Dr Augustus Jessopp and his wife.

The PCC is delighted with the success of the monthly coffee mornings in the village hall. These were the brainchild of Tricia Foreman and include splendid refreshments - the bacon butties being particularly noteworthy.

Highlights for this year will include a Gardens Open Day and Barbecue on 14 June. On Friday this week we have a first - a Pop Up shop of ladies Luxury fashions by the Francois Bouttier Studio of Holt.

During the year the Dereham and District Team Ministry has been expanded to include Bradenham and Shipdham with an additional part time vicar.
We are pleased that our regular congregation continues to grow steadily - boosted by the support of our own team of bell ringers with their distinctive red sweatshirts.

The choir in the time of Rev.Bignold about 80 or 90 years ago.

scarning hall

Scarning Hall which is adjacent to the church was once the rectory but now a private house.

Scarning Bellringers now have their own website which has all the up to date information about the group and their activities. Click on the image below:


A record is kept in the church and anyone wishing to consult the register should contact Alf Webdale on 01362 687558 or Alan Glister on 01362 696674 who will ensure that the enquirer has access to the register. A record made by Scarning WI is available online.

Click on the picture below to search records up to 1981