St Peter's Church Empingham
The church was built mainly in the 13th century, and the
porch and West front
added about 1300 -1330. In the 15th century the roof was
raised and round clerestory windows replaced with larger ones;
one remains opening onto the North transept. Carved figures
were added on the roof and some lancet windows replaced with
perpendicular ones. There were six altars: the high altar, two
in each transept and one by the font. Their positions are
indicated by the piscinas consisting of a niche with a drain
for cleansing the communion vessels.
In December 2003 the then unused South porch was converted
into a toilet and servery, and in 2009 a nave altar and
It was a Prebendal church under the jurisdiction of the
bishops of Lincoln until about 1870. A complete list of the
prebendaries dates from 1221, and the vicars and rectors from
1245. These lists can be seen on the West wall.
Originally the walls were covered by paintings. In the South
transept part of a painting of the Virgin Mary can be seen and
in the North transept the heads of St Anne and St Joachim. An
extensive restoration took place in 1894 and the pews replaced
by chairs. These were replaced in 2014.
Only one window, above the font, has stained glass. This depicts Simeon holding Jesus with Mary and
Anna nearby. Recently an embroidery depicting "Peace" was
hung in the chancel, another depicting St Peter's catch of
fish in the South porch. To celebrate the millennium a map
of the village was made and placed on the North wall. This
showed every house in the village at that time.
A comprehensive record of details of the building and
furniture was compiled by members of the Rutland NADFAS. In
1981 the local Womens Institute listed all the gravestones in
the churchyard in a document which is available in the church
for those seeking family ancestors. The Leicestershire Records
Office have registers of Baptisms up to 1932, Burials to 1956
and Marriages to 1991. After those dates they are held in the
Renovation of the pipe organ in Empingham Church.
At this date (14th February) we hope that the work will be complete in May 2020.
The organ is being renovated by Malcolm Spink Ltd of Leeds. It will be partially dismantled
so that access to all areas can be gained for vacuum cleaning and servicing. All the pipes
will have their tone creating parts reset and their sound tested on a special voicing machine.
The various mechanisms operating the pipe valves and the stops will be repaired as necessary.
A new motorised blower will be fitted.
After the renovation
As part of the National Lottery grant, next year will see the delivery of a series of exciting school
and community activities at St Peter’s, to celebrate the restoration of our organ. The organ will be
adapted to make it possible to see all the internal parts. The side panels will be unlocked and
removed and internal lights switched on. This will be done when an authorised person can explain
the various parts and how they operate.
On 20th June a lunchtime recital will be held. David Hill a well known organist will be playing.
More details in the Parish Magazine.
Details of the organ
It was built by Henry Jackson of Stamford in 1895.
58 reed pipes are tuned by adjusting the small reed within each pipe. 552 fluepipes are
tuned by shortening or extending their effective length. This makes 610 in total. There
are two keyboards and a pedal board. Each keyboard has 5 stops which select the timbre
required e.g. flute, oboe etc.
Access to the church
Normally during daylight hours the door at the West end
above the steps is kept open. The North door is kept locked
except for services. Access by wheelchair is possible along
the path from the North gate. Instructions as to how to
obtain the key for the North door are in the notice boards.
A portable ramp can be used down the two steps into the
To view the web site for the Rutland Water Benefice please click here.