May
6

St. Mary Magdalene, Sandringham

The Grade II* listed church is dedicated to Mary Magdalene and is described as a small building in the Perpendicular style, “nobly lying on raised ground”.

The current building dates to the 16th century and was restored by S. S. Teulon in 1855 and Arthur Blomfield in 1890. It is considered to be a noteworthy example of a carrstone building. Carrstone (or carstone, also known as Silsoe and gingerbread) is a sedimentary sandstone conglomerate formed during the Cretaceous period. It varies in colour from light to dark rusty ginger. Used as a building stone it can be found in Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and extensively in the historic buildings of North-west Norfolk.

The silver altar and reredos were presented to Queen Alexandra by the American department store owner, Rodman Wanamaker, as a tribute to Edward VII. He also presented her with the silver pulpit and a silver 17th-century Spanish processional cross.

Of note also are a Florentine marble font and a Greek font dating to the 9th-century.

There are memorials to many members and relations of the Royal Family in the church and churchyard. Prince John(12 July 1905 – 18 January 1919) is buried here. King George VI lay in state in the church after his death in February 1952.

The church has been the site of many royal christenings. These christenings include:

King George VI was baptised on 10 February 1896
Mary, Princess Royal and Countess of Harewood was baptised on 7 June 1897
King Olav V of Norway was baptised on 11 August 1903
Prince John was baptised on 3 August 1905
Diana, Princess of Wales was baptised on 30 August 1961[12]
Princess Eugenie of York was baptised 23 December 1990
Princess Charlotte of Cambridge was baptised 5 July 2015[13]