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All Saints, Billockby
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Billockby church is a landmark, alone on a rise to the east of the Acle to Stalham road. There is no other building near. You reach it along tiny lanes cut deep between rolling fields, but in fact these lanes run into busy roads, and Billockby church's isolation is something of an illusion. Nevertheless, it is an easy one to maintain if you stand in the tree-surrounded churchyard, the fields rolling away in all directions, without another human being in sight.
This must have been a fine church once, but the tower was rent asunder by a lightning strike in 1762. Judging by the crack the event must have been spectacular - I hope nobody was inside it at the time. As so often happens, falling masonry destroyed the nave, and all that was left was the chancel. However, as discussed in the introduction, this proved sufficient to the needs of the congregation, who made it safe, huddled in it miserably until a full-scale restoration of 1872, and left the rest a picturesque ruin. And so it remains.
Simon Knott, June 2011
You can also read: Lost in Translation: an introduction to ruined churches
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