St Mary the Virgin Merton

      Diocese of Southwark, Church of England

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New to Merton Park?
St Mary's is your parish church

If you have recently moved to Merton Park, you may not yet have made your way to St Mary’s to explore the lovely old church, with its graveyard and the glebe fields beyond.  There has been a church on this site for about a thousand years and the present building was founded by Gilbert the Norman in 1115. 

Church and churchyard in the snow

Today St Mary’s provides an oasis of calm for anyone seeking a place for prayer, contemplation, or merely peace and quiet.  Everyone is welcome at any of our services (More here...)  Additionally the church is open most mornings during the year and on Sundays, in between services.

Apart from the sense of space and silence which greets you as you enter, you will become aware of the many people who have been there before you by the varied and interesting memorials on display inside.  One or two, such as the funeral hatchment for Lord Nelson are of the famous, others are for well known local families, such as the Raynes and many others are of people important in their time.  The effigies of Sir Gregory Lovell, from the sixteenth century, his wives and children, together with his ceremonial helmet hanging above, are well worth looking out for. 

In the tree filled graveyard which surrounds the church, (now managed by Merton Council) you can find the tombs of John Innes and William Rutlish, whose endowment lead to the founding of our local boys’ school.  Look out for the lovely poem put on his wife’s headstone, by the bookseller Mr LackingtonExploring other graves will lead you to the entrance to the glebe fields.  These offer a unique green space for people to wander through, and also provide a habitat for a variety of wild life.  An increasing range of plants and flowers flourish there. Woodpeckers, long tailed tits and an owl inhabit it and recently a pair of sparrow hawks have nested there. 

There is much that is worthwhile to find at St Mary’s, do come and visit us.