St Catherine’s Church, Towersey, OX9 3QS

Access improvement works and new facilities for this Anglican church were funded with the help of an OHCT grant of £15,000.

The major development in 2018 consisted of the installation of a new servery and a wheelchair-accessible WC at the west end of the church. These improvements enable the church to find new ways of using the building for the benefit of the community, and not just on a Sunday.

A building dedicated to Christian worship has been on this site for more than 1,000 years. Some of the oldest parts of the church are in the chancel area (where the Communion table and choir stalls now stand). This is believed to be the original part of the building.

The original chapel was added to significantly in the 14th century, and again in the 1850s, when the current tower housing the bells was added. St Catherine’s has a peal of four bells cast in 1627 and 1695, and a chimed Sanctus bell cast in 1800. St Catherine’s is one of only a handful of four-bell towers in the country. The tower also houses a 16th century clock that was originally in Rycote Chapel (near Thame). This was presented to the church in 1887, being transferred from Thame Market House (now the Town Hall).