St Mary the Virgin, Henham, Essex


The church of St Mary the Virgin in Henham, Essex dates back to 13th century. The tower is dated to 1325 and the south porch to the 15th century, as does the font. 


The south porch is where most of the graffiti is to be found. It has a good collection of circle designs, including an elaborate one which is pecked into the stonework rather than scratched. It also has a swastika pelta and some Marian marks.

There are a few merels of the Three Men’s Morris design. All three are in a vertical orientation.

A little sketch of a dog can be found on the tower arch. The rest of the graffiti is made up of crosses, cross hatching and names and initials. The dates are mostly 17th and 18th centuries.

Report by Anthea Hawdon and Linda Wilson

St Mary the Virgin
Church Street
Bishop’s Stortford
CM22 6AN

The church is usually open during daylight hours.

Search terms: PG, 1782, Marian mark, W, Compass circle, JH, EG, 1782, IM, W, WP, W, 1630, 1631, S GAY, 1745, 1619, 1669, Dog, Daisy wheel (compass), Compass circle, IM, SC, 1707, other marks, IHS, other marks, Merel 3 Men’s Morris, TM, Marian mark, M, IN, T, RW, Circle design, Unidentified marks, AIR, cross, sword, face, cross hatching, swastika pelta, Cross, H, 1717, WP, 1693, A, Cross, IR, dot patterns, WC 1818, Circle (hand drawn), sun cross, Compass drawn circles (concentric), 1780s, 1700s, 1630s, 1600s, 1740s, 1610s, 1660s, 1710s, 1690s, 1810s, 1800s