St Mary the Virgin is a sturdy aisled and clerestoried building. The interior has a 12th century four-bay south arcade and a 12th century south aisle with a piscina at the east end. The font is marble, probably 13th century.
There is a handsome mural tablet to the Rev. Christopher Stannard B.D. fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge, many years rector of this parish.
The register dates from the year 1560. (Transcription of the Registers HERE)
The pews have interesting poppyheaded ends from the 15th century. Over the door is an 18th century board containing the Ten Commandments and another board contains the Royal Arms.
The Chancel has a notable 15th century rood screen which you can read about on a separate page HERE.
The nave and aisle roofs have exposed rafters circa 1800.
Although there is a grand Norman font, much of the character is Decorated, with a Perpendicular chancel arch and a patina of Georgian from the major 1800 restoration.
Even though the village of Great Snoring is now smaller than that of Little Snoring, its church is bigger and less rustic, and has more grandeur.
Painted Rood Screen
The rood screen is little documented, but has just two intriguing surviving painted panels. One depicts the Holy Trinity in the form of God the Father holding the crucified Christ while a dove descends. This representation is not that uncommon in medieval churches, but it is unusual on roodscreens.
The panel beside it depicts Mary and the infant Christ, at once tender and beautiful.
The decalogue board over the door is massive, and facing across from it are royal arms to James II. Because of his popish reputation, these are relatively unusual, but it matches the one at Little Snoring.
A medieval brass to Ralph Shelton is badly damaged, but his wife still survives. There is also an alabaster wall monument and a touching memorial to brothers who died of smallpox.
With its World War gravemarker, still with its Flanders mud underneath the varnish, it's a haunting place.
Speaking of haunting, I stayed in the Old Rectory overnight when in Gt Snoring. The room I had was directly overlooking the church and churchyard. I left the curtains open and the shutters wide. In the middle of the night I woke to see a LIGHT inside the church! It flickered like a candle, but must have been much larger to light up the church, and it moved backwards and forwards. I've never been able to account for it. (The door of the church is kept locked by the way.)
You can see photos of the church below. Please note that I took only some of these photos myself, and I make no claim to the others, which are here displayed merely for the purposes of illustration.