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St Andrew, Hoe
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St Andrew is one of a number of little churches lost in the convoluted lanes to the north of Dereham. Lost, not least, because there is no village here, just the big Hall beside the church at the heart of the agricultural estate. The church key was kept at the estate office at the time of my visit in April 2016.
The first impression of St Andrew is how odd it looks, a long, tall, angular block of a church softened only by its red-tiled early 19th Century porch. In fact, the church was entirely rebuilt at an unusual date, the 1780s, late enough for there to be a sense of Gothick, but not much ecclesiologically correct about it. Given that there were not many people living in the parish, it is likely that the rebuilding was at the behest of the L'Estrange family at the Hall. A chancel was added in 1820, although there isn't much to show the difference between the chancel and the nave either inside or out, and then the porch came in 1833. Mortlock thought that this was probably the time the medieval tower was truncated. And then the great Victorian revival began, but at Hoe there was apparently either not the money or the inclination to alter things further.
Simon Knott, August 2016
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