St Peter's Church is more usually known as
the 'Town Church'. It lies close to The Harbour in St Peter Port,
between Mill Street and the High Street, which is on the eastern
side of the Channel Island of Guernsey. Twenty-five kilometres
south-east is Jersey, and the French coastline is not much further
away. The church is considered the finest on the islands, with
documentary evidence pointing to its existence as early as 1048,
although most of the building is later.
There may have been a religious building here
since AD 500, when the fortified Roman town was still inhabited. In
1048 a grant was given by William, duke of Normandy (and later king
of England) for six churches to be built on Guernsey, including this
one. St Peter's was burnt down in 1294 during a French attack on the
Plantagenet port. This attack also saw many houses destroyed, a
large number of horses being hamstrung, and around 1,500 local
The only section of the church to survive was
part of the wall along the south aisle, and the twelfth century
pulpit, from which the present structure was built (shown here in a
1903 postcard). The chapel dates to the fifteenth century, while the
pulpit was installed in its current location during an 1822 refit.
As well as its religious use the church has been a fire station and
fortified shelter in its time. More recently, the church underwent a
major refit in 2009.
One photo on this page kindly contributed by Colin