In the 10th century Ailwin, Earl of East Anglia, gave Hemingford Abbots and part of Hemingford Grey to Ramsey Abbey. King Edgar granted a charter for the first church to be built, on the site of the present chancel, in 974.
Two hundred years later this wooden church was replaced with a stone building, around 1190. Two columns and part of the former tower from this survive at the east end of the nave. The font, which is still used for Baptisms, originated in the early 13th century.
Much of the present church originates from the late 1300s, with the spire and wall painting being added in the 1400s.
The roof of the church was raised to its present height and the 22 carved angels were installed in the early 1500s. Five of the Six bells are dated 1754.
The Enclosure Award of 1806 consolidated church lands in the parish. The frontage of the Old Rectory dates from 1814, and several major repairs to the church were carried out in the 1820s.
Following significant restoration of the church porch and aisles in 1872-5, most of the present chancel dates from 1913. The main structure of the rest of the church has remained the same for over 500 years.
The church has four stained glass windows, but particularly noteworthy are those with engraved glass, which were created by local engraver David Peace.
The Church of St Margaret of Antioch can be located by turning into Church Lane off the High Street by the public house the Axe and Compass. The church tower can be seen from the village centre.
The Churchyard is approached from Church Lane via the Lych Gate which was given to Hemingford Abbots by Warboys Church and other friends in 1974 - the year when this church celebrated its millennium. Originally the Lych Gate was found in a derelict state in Tick Farm, Warboys and was believed to have been the entrance to a Chapel of Ease.
Publications about the church are due to be reprinted in 2014.
For enquiries about the publications, click on this hyperlink Charles Beresford.
Who's Who at St Margaret's:
|Priest in Charge
||Reverend Peter Cunliffe
||Michael Sullivan & Jenny Stocker
||Charles Beresford (retiring Easter 2014)
||David Yeandle, Bruce Garner and others
|Gift Aid Secretary
|Members of the PCC:
Priest-in-charge and Chairman of the Parochial Church Council : Revd. Peter Cunliffe.
PCC minuting secretary : Janet Stewart
Deanery Synod Representative : David Wordsworth
PCC members : Cahrles Beresford, Judith Bolton, Richard Butterfield, Bruce Garner, John Hyde, Daniela Spilca, Michael Sullivan, Jennifer Stocker, Sally Spowart
Times of Services
All are welcome. The normal pattern as follows may change (e.g. for Easter and Christmas) to reflect the church year. Details are in the monthly Parish magazine.
December 2013 includes :1st Dec 6.00 pm Advent Carols
15th Dec - 4.30 pm Christingle
22nd Dec - 6.00 pm Christmas Carols
24th Dec - 11.30 pm Midnight Holy Communion
25th Dec - 9.00 am Christmas Sung Eucharist
The times of Sunday services at St Margaret's Hemingford Abbots are as follows:
8.30 am : 2nd & 4th weeks Holy Communion
9.30 1st week : Sung Eucharist
2nd week : Family Service
3rd week : Sung Eucharist
4th week : Choral Matins
5th week : Songs of Praise or Morning Prayer
6 pm Choral Evensong (once each quarter)