It's Our Turn Now

Securing the Future Appeal

To read all about the Appeal please click here

To make a donation today using Just Giving click on the logo below

1802 Thomas Fisher painting of the Holy Trinity from a top tracery section of Stained Glass which was removed during the Victorian restoration of 1865 and has since been sadly lost. 

Click here to see more about Thomas Fisher and the Hildersham

Medieval Stained glass

The church was heavily restored between 1855 and 1890 led by the Rector Robert Goodwin and his great architect friend

Charles Alban Buckler who he had met in Oxford.  You can see the Buckler arms above, it is surrounded by an S collar and Royal badge as Charles was a Herald Exraordinary for Surrey and behind it is his Maltese Cross from his Order of Malta

To read more about

Charles Alban Buckler click here

Family History

We are always willing to help with family and local history enquiries, please click here

National Schools PDF click here

Old school at Hildersham

Church History Guides

Wall Paintings guide

written by Jim Mynors 2007

Hildersham Church guide

written by Canon P R Philips c.1914

Hildersham Church VCH

Victoria County History 1973

Mary Magdalene

sister of Martha?

1802 Thomas Fisher painting of St. Christopher from a top tracery section of Stained Glass which was removed during the Victorian restoration of 1865 and has since been sadly lost

Tree of Jesse East Window by Clayton & Bell 1865

Chancel Victorian Murals by Clayton & Bell 1890

Church History Guides

The Painted Chancel at Hildersham written by Andrew Westwood-Bate 2012

Wall Paintings guide written by Jim Mynors 2007

Hildersham Church guide written by Canon P R Philips c.1914

Hildersham Church VCH Victoria County History 1973

Mary Magdalene sister of Martha?


Revd Charles Goodwin

Robert Goodwin's father

In 1803 Thomas Fisher painted the memorial brasses at Hildersham, here are these paintings

Close up of the Holy Trinity on the brass below, note the dove whispering in Gods ear

Henry Parys 1466


Robert & Aleinora Parys 1408

depicting a 'Seat of Mercy' as their is no Dove


Mortality Brass 1530

Originally nailed to the Sacristy door to deter people stealing the Holy Sacraments





Various paintings of the church

William Cole 1742



Thomas Fisher 1803



Philips family c.1810



J S Clarke 1894




Wilfrid Harris 1961



George Seaman-Turner 1964



Sketch 1978

Sketch for

village magazine


Bob Smithers 1980


Anthea Robinson 2004

Minton Tile set of the


Agnus Dei



St Luke



St Matthew



St Peter



St John


St Luke


Holy Trinity Church, Hildersham,

The Priest in Charge is:

The Revd Dr. Julie Norris 01223 891350

The Rectory, 35 Church Lane, Little Abington, Cambridge CB21 6BQ

Hildersham Churchwardens:

Mrs. Cathy Myer                           01223 892848   PCC Chairman

Mr Andrew Westwoood-Bate   01223 892430  

If you need to get in touch with the Hildersham Parochial Church Council

Please contact our two Church Wardens for any communications:


For all matters relating to finance -

Please contact our PCC Treasurer::

Mr. David Newble  01223 892425

Little Chilfords, Back Road, Linton, Cambs CB21 4LF

If you are interested in the church building, its history or the Parish Records - Please contact our Churchwarden, and Local & Family Historian - Andrew Westwood-Bate   01223 892430 - 0787 5469538

To find out more click here

Holy Trinity new Facebook page: 



Hildersham Church Events click here


Engraving of the Church by J S Clarke December 1894


St Etheldreda in an Nave West window

St Etheldreda reflected in the Tree of Life glass

Hildersham Church Services and Events Programme 2013

Please click here for a list of services in our 7 church 'patch' in June.

If you are interested in Stained Glass there is a special 5th Sunday joint service at St Mary's, Little Abington at 10.45 on Sunday 30th June, when Andrew Westwood-Bate will give a short presentation on Charles Eamer Kempe (there is a 1901 Kempe window at Lt Abington), Clayton & Bell and various other examples of Stained Glass in our Seven Parishes.

Kempe's Makers Mark at Little Abington

Kempe's 1901 Adoration of the Kings at Little Abington




Engraving of Hildersham Church by William Cole 1742

Engraving of Hildersham Church by J S Clark 1894

Painting of Hildersham Church by Rob Howard 2012


Photograph of Hildersham Church by Colin Franklin


He called them, and immediately they left the boat and their father,

and followed Him

Matthew 4:22 KJV

Below is some of the iconography at Holy Trinity, Hildersham, which portrays the story of the verse above:

Medeival Glass at Holy Trinity, Hildersham

Click here for Matthew Chapter4

And he said to them:

"Follow me, and I will make you Fishers of Men"

Matthew 4:18 KJV




Below is some of the iconography at Holy Trinity, Hildersham, which portrays the many images of the Holy Trinity

Holy Trinity

Below is some of the iconography at Holy Trinity, Hildersham, which portrays the many images of the Holy Trinity

Mural of the Holy Trinity above the east side of the chancel arch

painted by Clayton and Bell in 1890

The arms of the Holy Trinity

The Holy Trinity as three fish on a nave kneeler

Holy Trinity as three fish made from mosaic tiles

The Holy Trinity as three hares in Medieval glass

The Holy Trinity shown rarely as three men at the coronation of the Virgin Mary who has a new head at Holy Trinity, Goodramgate, York

Holy Trinity from the Memorial brass of  Henry Paris (Parys) 1466

below is a painting of 1803 by Thomas Fisher, when it still had it's head and dove.  It shows Adam's Skull at the bottom of the cross, click here to read about the story of this from the Golden Legend of 1275


Holy Trinity 'T' in chancel stained glass

Holy Trinity 'T' in chancel roof murals

Above are two Clerestory windows showing the inter-woven Holy Trinity Star a common image at Hildersham here are some more

Holy Trinity star on a candelabra

Holy Trinity star on a Chancel Chair

Holy Trinity Fleur-de-lis on of many designs in the church

Holy Trinity in the south transept roundel

Holy Trinity in East Window top tracery stonework

Holy Trinity star on a gravestone

Ascension Season Victorian Wall Paintings at Hildersham

(Designed by Charles Alban Buckler and painted by Clayton & Bell)


Jesus Ascension into Heaven

Acts 1 1-11

Jesus Taken Up Into Heaven

 1 In my former book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus began to do and to teach 2 until the day he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen. 3 After his suffering, he presented himself to them and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God. 4 On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. 5 For John baptized with[a] water, but in a few days you will be baptized with[b] the Holy Spirit.”

 6 Then they gathered around him and asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”

 7 He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

 9 After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.

 10 They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. 11 “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.”



Easter Sepulchre prior to 19th restorations with brass clearly on top

Easter Sepulchre as it is today post Victorian transformation into a Knight's Templar tomb

William Bustler & his Lady 1334

(as seen in north corner of the nave)

William Bustler & his Lady 1334

William Bustler & his Lady 1334

(as painted in the old Bustler Chapel in 1803

just prior to the chapel being demolished)


Holy Trinity, Hildersham at Christmas 2010

Hildersham Church at Christmas 2010

Here are some photos of our candle lit service of Nine Lessons & Carols held on Sunday 19th December 2010. 

This is the 130th anniversary of the first service of Nine Lessons and Carols first performed in a wooden shed outside the Truro Cathedral that was being constructed.  Bishop Edward White Benson held the service at 10pm on Christmas Eve 1880, held at this time to encourage his parishioners to spend the evening in church instead of going out carousing.  As the story is told by his son:

"My father arranged from ancient sources a little service for Christmas Eve - nine carols and nine tiny lessons, which were read by various officers of the church, beginning with a chorister, and ending with the Bishop". 

The suggestion had come from the Revd. GHS. Walpole, later Bishop of Edinburgh.

 In the following years the service became popular amongst Church clergy, no doubt helped by Benson's elevation to the Archbishop of Canterbury in 1883.  By 1884, a London publisher was distributing Nine Lessons with Carols: A festal service for Christmastide, and another edition was published by the church's SPCK (Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge) making special reference to the Truro original.

The world famous service of Nine Lessons and Carols is of course the one held locally at Kings College, Cambridge.  This was first held on Christmas Eve 1918 inaugurated by the new Dean of King's College, Eric Milner-White. 

The date of the service is very important and it puts the service in context.  It was just at the end of the First World War, Eric Milner White before the war was the was the chaplain of Kings College.  He joined the army in September 1914 and he had spent 4 years at the western front amid "the roar of shaking great guns" and the sight of "bowed and grimy men in mud-brown dress, torn and stained and even bloody".

Milner returned to Kings College in July 1918 and was soon elevated to Dean of the College.  One of his first acts was to hold the memorial service for the war dead of the college on November 2nd 1918, the roll of honour that was read aloud included 199 names of King's men who had fallen in the conflict.  The dead included the poet Rupert Brooke, but also graduates, undergraduates, choral scholars, college staff members and 18 men who had been boy choristers.

The fledgling BBC first broadcast the service in 1928, it missed 1929, but returned in 1930 and has never missed since.

During WW2 you had to be a hardy soul to go to the service as all the Stained Glass had been removed and replaced with shutters and with it went all the heat.  The glass was stored locally in the caves at the Lime Kiln in Balsham.

Christmastide Wall Paintings at Hildersham

There are also two very special wall paintings that are very apt at this time of year, they were painted in 1890 during the last period of Victorian Restoration.  The artists were Clayton & Bell, the architect Charles Alban Buckler, and the designs were paid for the rector's sister Elizabeth Hemington-Goodwin, with the leading Cambridge Camden Society rector, the Revd Robert Goodwin firmly in Charge.

The Nativity - Clayton & Bell 1890

The Epiphany - Clayton & Bell 1890

Engraving of the Church by J S Clarke December 1894

Hildersham Church December 2010

Hildersham Church December 2010


Hildersham Church 9 Lessons and Carols 19 December 2010

Eastertide Images from the Wall Paintings at Hildersham

Palm Sunday

Below are images from the Palm Sunday Procession into Jerusalem

click here for the full image and click on the images below for larger versions of the individual sections

Palm Sunday Procession

Garden of Gethsemane (part 1)

Garden of Gethsemane (part 2)



Instruments of the Passion in the Chancel

Christ crucified on the cross

(East Window - Tree of Jesse - Clayton & Bell 1865)

Alabaster Reredos

(Designed by Charles Alban Buckler and made by Rattee & Kette)

The Resurrection - Victorian Wall Paintings at Hildersham

(Designed by Charles Alban Buckler and painted by Clayton & Bell)


Hildersham's Medieval Stained Glass

Below are some photos of images of Hildersham's Medieval Stained Glass, some still fitted in the church, some long lost, but most of them were recorded in 15 paintings in 1802 by Thomas Fisher in his book Cambridgeshire Churches of Antiquity vol H-L which came up for auction a few years ago and was bought by the Society of Antiquaries, Hildersham paid towards the images being digitised.

"The Fisher (Cambridgeshire) Collection consists of 33 items, most of which are drawings by Thomas Fisher, many dated 1802. The subjects of these drawings are churches and church monuments from various locations in Cambridgeshire. They were probably purchased in 1837 by John Bowyer Nichols, and bound while in his possession. The volume was purchased by the Society of Antiquaries in 2001, from the collection of Lt. Col J C W Francis"

Hildersham in its north wall of the nave has two superb 13th century stained glass windows

13th Century window showing St. James the Greater with St. Martha, the Bustler coat of arms is in the tracery

13th century window of St. John the evangelist & St. Mary Magdalene, the De Vere coat of arms is in the tracery.  Below is a close up of Mary Magdalene & below that a painting by Thomas Fisher in 1802 showing missing glass replaced by Clayton & Bell in 1865


Painting in 1802

There are other fragments of glass in odd bits of tracery like the censing angel in the piece below

Other paintings in 1802 by Thomas fisher show glass lost forever

This beautiful image of the Holy Trinity

St. Christopher

In the South East window of the Bustler Chapel demolished in 1803 were these images of St. Peter and St. Paul.  They artist had great trouble with St. Paul's feet and St. Paul must have struggled with those huge keys.

Thomas fisher wrote on the bottom of the painting "Memorandum the head of St. Paul has been broken and an apparent female head has been placed in it.  Well the head is definitely not Paul, who is normally shown without much hair, with a beard, was this a head of a previous St. John?

 St. Peter

St. Paul

St. Paul from a image in one of the Clayton & Bell windows in the nave.

There is a painting by Thomas Fisher in 1802 of this lovely bearded saintly figure.


Above is a Thomas Fisher painting of the 4 light north window of what Thomas called the Rector's Chancel.  This window was replaced in the 1855 first restoration period, however the Christ giving a blessing image has been preserved in a Victorian window upper tracery

Painting of Christ giving Blessing

Medieval Stained Glass of Christ giving Blessing


Crowned Mary & baby Jesus

Memling, ca. A.D. 1487

In the Medieval glass inserted into the same window as the Christ image you can clearly see Mary Breast feeding baby Jesus this is an image that is quite common in Mediaeval paintings and stained glass.  Click here & here


Mary's milk was seen as an expression of her Motherly humanity to all mankind, in a scene entitled The Lactation of Saint Bernard of Clairvaux

An engraving of The Lactation of Saint Bernard of Clairvaux. Virgin Mary is shooting milk into the eye of Saint Bernard of Clairvaux from her left breast which allegedly miraculously cured an eye affliction

The Virgin Mary at Ickleton in their Doom Painting, baring her breast to take on the sins of the world.  Her arms outstretched like this was the original way people prayed, they later raised their hands up straight to the sky. It was only in the 8th century that hands were held together

From 'The imagery of British Churches' [M. D. Anderson 1955]:

' The posture with hands joined was unknown alike to pagan antiquity and early Christianity; it appears first in the 8th century, but did not become popular until the 12th century.  Dom Loius Gugaud suggests that it may have been derived from a teutonic feudal ceremony since it was known as a juridical form of homage long before it was adopted as a devotional attitude.  The kneeling vassal placed his hands , held palm to palm, between those of his over-lord who, when the oath of allegiance had been pronounced, kissed him and accepted him as his liege man.  In the Middle Ages it probably suggested a spiritual counterpart to feudal loyalty, and this explains why, on most medieval effigies, we see finely tapered hands pressed palm to palm as though they waited in cinfidence the accepting clasp of their creator'

Your soul was always shown as a baby or young child being carried up to heaven by an angel.  The image below is from the Office of the Dead in a Book of Hours.



Hildersham Village History

Even more Hildersham village history can be found by clicking here or at our new Hildersham page on the Cambridgeshire Community Archive Network (CCAN)

In Cambridgeshire we are extremely lucky to have two fantastic depositories of local records, these are the Cambridgeshire Collection currently located at the Cambridge Central Library and Cambridgeshire Archives at Shire Hall, Castle hill, Cambridge. 

A lot of their records can now be found on their online search facility called "CALM".  To have a look at some of the Hildersham Church records held at the Cambridgeshire Archves relating to Hildersham why not click here.




Securing the Future Appeal : It's Our Turn Now

Holy Trinity church, Hildersham is held in considerable affection by the majority of the village who enjoy its history and regard it as a place of peace and beauty which belongs to us all.  

The Parochial Church Council has been anxious to nurture the integration of Church and Village by promoting a number of initiatives including a regular "Village Teatime", a series of lectures on a wide range of interesting secular subjects, performances of plays in the churchyard and concerts in the church as well as open and inclusive services.  

These and other initiatives have been highly successful and we are anxious to do more and make the church building a living community asset rather than a Sunday museum.

In looking to achieve our aims we face a number of challenges perhaps the greatest being the complete lack of basic facilities within the church building (water, drainage, & WC).

 Not only does a lack of these facilities limit our ability to use the building to full advantage but it also means that a number of people are effectively excluded altogether.

As temporary custodians of a treasure that has existed for over 850 years we are faced with the challenge and duty to pass it on to our successors in at least as good and hopefully better order than it was passed to us - it is not ours to neglect!

Furthermore given the historical, artistic and architectural features of our building we are faced with the obligation not only to keep them safe and in good repair, but also to ensure that they remain available and accessible to the widest possible audience and can be understood and appreciated more fully and simply enjoyed by all.

In summary therefore, as a small community we are faced with a wonderful opportunity, a heavy responsibility and challenging targets - we are not  daunted and have ambitious plans to address these matters and fit us for the future.

In order to make the building accessible to all and capable of being used flexibly for a wide range of purposes we aim to provide a kitchen and WC together with a water supply and drainage.  Since the existing space within the building is already well used to achieve this aim we shall need to build an extension to the North of the existing North Door.

Our exceptional wall paintings have suffered some damage from the effects of dampness. 

The Parochial Church Council have already undertaken significant work to tackle the causes of dampness and will now complete a full survey and the necessary restoration work to the paintings not only to preserve their condition but also to enhance their visibility and accessibility to a wider group of interested parties. 

One of the causes identified was the proximity of the Oil Tank to the outside church wall trapping leaves and resulting in dampness to permeate the flint walls.  To resolve this we need to re-site the oil tank to a completely new location, this will also allow us to bring the oil delivery system to the latest Health and Safety standards. 

In order to keep our treasures in good order we must also undertake major repairs to two of the church roofs.


The Costs:

The cost of these enhancements are expected to be over £190,000 - What will this achieve?

If our plans are successful we shall be have available a resource to:


  • Further our mission to the whole village community
  • Provide a well maintained accessible building with suitable facilities for a variety of purposes in the community
  • Protect Hildersham's wall paintings, a significant historical asset for the next generation
  • Enhance our ability to work with children and young people


A wide range of people have been very generous and have invested their time and money in this important project, we always warmly welcome anyone else who would like to become a benefactor of this project and become integral to securing the long term future of Holy Trinity Church, Hildersham; It Is Our Turn Now

Please contact our PCC Treasurer:

Mr. David Newble  01223 892425

Little Chilfords, Back Road, Linton, Cambs CB21 4LF

Click here for a Gift Card Form

To leave a donation electronically please click here


It's our Turn Now Project Photos:









It's Our Turn Now

Securing the Future Appeal


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The Hildersham Impersonator:

Making Cat Christmas Cake

Click on the cat for a bigger image

Click on the above photos to go Granta Deanery Synod Webpage


The arms of the Holy Trinity

as portrayed at Hildersham

Church Services

Church Services

for 2014

[see centre panel

for more details]

1st Sunday of month

9.15am Holy Communion

with children's activities

(Order Two

Large Print Version)

2nd Sunday of month

4pm 'All Praise'

with children's activities

3rd Sunday of month

9.15am Holy Communion

with children's activities

(Order One Large Print Version)

4th Sunday of month

6pm Sung Evensong

(Evensong Large Print Version)

5th Sunday of month

see locally for details

Large Print Versions

of Services

Order One

Order Two



Click on the above logo

to go to the Seven Churches webpage

Bishop Harvey Goodwin

(Dean of Ely Cathedral, later Bishop of Carlise, Founding member of the Cambridge Camden Society)

Revd Robert Goodwin, the driving force behind the Victorian Restoration and Chancel Wall Paints between 1855 -1890

The Resurrection as portrayed at Hildersham


In 1803 Thomas Fisher painted the Wooden Effigies at Hildersham, sadly these were stolen in 1976.  Here are the paintings that make them look like stone!!

William Bustler Knight

Thomas Fisher painting

William Bustler Knight


William Bustler Knight


William Bustler Knight

Thomas Fisher painting

Lady Bustler

Thomas Fisher painting

Lady Bustler


Lady Bustler

Thomas Fisher painting

Lady Bustler


Minton Tile set of the

Apostles attributes

Minton Tile set of the

Eagle of St. John

Minton Tile set of the

Winged Bull of St. Luke

Minton Tile set of the

Winged lion of St. Mark

Minton Tile set of the

Winged man of St. Matthew

Sacristy Floor tiles

Thought to be part

of a sample pack


Hildersham Church 9 Lessons and Carols 19 December 2010

Hildersham Church 9 Lessons and Carols 19 December 2010

Pelican in Piety


Solomon's Seal

Maw and Co.

Lower altar step tiles


Fleur de Lis

Sacristy Floor tiles

Thought to be part

of a sample pack






Hildersham Church 9 Lessons and Carols 19 December 2010


Hildersham Church 9 Lessons and Carols 19 December 2010








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