THE CHURCH

 

In about 1017, soon after his marriage to Emma of Normandy, King Canute granted a land called 'Rammesleah' to the Abbey at Fecamp in Normandy.

 

Construction of the present church in around 1180 was probably funded by the Abbott of Fecamp.

 

Until 1413 Brede remained under the domination of the Abbey and the parish was served by its Benedictine monks until 'alien' (foreign) priories were dissolved buring the reign of King Henry VIII.

 

The name of the village is first found in a charter of c1030 and comes from Olde English 'bredu' meaning breadth' referring to the wide river to the south.

 

The River Brede later took it's name from the village.

 

The Church is dedicated to St. George, probably a soldier martyred in Palestine in the early 4th century.

 

Besides also being Patron Saint of England he is remembered above all for the legend of 'St. George and the Dragon'.

 

There is a window dedicated to him at the west end of the north aisle and a statue near the altar in the church.

 

Very little of the earlier Norman building remains and the structure of the Church developed over a period of some 400 years from the 12th century onwards.

 

From the exterior, much of what one sees is 15th century Perpendicular architecture.  The walls were built of local sandstone and ironstone.  High on a buttress near the porch is a brass sundial dated 1826.

 

The view of the Brede valley and the hills beyond is magnificent.