Croydon Parish Church

Coordinates: 51°22′22″N 0°06′22″W / 51.3727°N 0.1061°W / 51.3727; -0.1061

Croydon Minster is the parish and civic church of the London Borough of Croydon. There are currently more than 35 churches in the borough, with Croydon Minster being the most prominent.


The church was founded in Saxon times, since there is a record of "a priest of Croydon" in 960, although the first record of a church building is in the Domesday Book (1086). In its final medieval form, the church was mainly a Perpendicular-style structure, but this was severely damaged by fire in 1867, following which only the tower, south porch and outer walls remained. Under the direction of Sir George Gilbert Scott the church was rebuilt, incorporating the remains and essentially following the design of the medieval building, and was reconsecrated in 1870. It still contains several important monuments and fittings saved from the old church. The church was elevated to the status of Croydon Minster on 29 May 2011, the first such change in the diocese of Southwark.

Croydon has strong religious links, from a royal charter for Surrey Street Market dating back to 1276, to Croydon Palace which was the summer residence of the Archbishop of Canterbury for over 500 years. With visitors such as Henry III and Queen Elizabeth I. The Bishop of Croydon is a position as a suffragan Bishop in the Anglican Diocese of Southwark. The bishopric is currently vacant following the translation of Rt Rev Nicholas (Nick) Baines to be Bishop of Bradford. The current vicar is Revd Canon Colin J Luke Boswell, Vicar of Croydon and Chaplain to the Whitgift Foundation. A list of the Bishops of the Episcopal Area of Croydon include:


The church has a large 4 manual pipe organ, much of which is by William Hill and Son. A specification of the organ can be found on the National Pipe Organ Register.

There is also a small organ in the St. Nicholas' Chapel which was obtained from St. Mary the Virgin, Preston Candover. A specification of the chapel organ can be found on the National Pipe Organ Register.

Organists & Masters of Choristers
  • Thomas Attwood Walmisley 1830 - 1833
  • John Pyke Hullah
  • John Rhodes 1857 - 1868
  • Frederick Cambridge 1868 - 1911
  • F Rowland Tims 1911 - 1918
  • H Leslie Smith 1918 - 1948
  • Edward Shakespeare 1948 - 1952
  • J A Rogans (Hon) 1952 - 1953
  • B Aldersea 1952 - 1957
  • J A Rogans (Hon) 1957 - 1958
  • Derek Holman 1958 - 1965
  • Roy Massey 1965 - 1968
  • Michael Fleming 1968 - 1978
  • David Brookshaw 1978 - 1980
  • Simon Lole 1980 - 1985
  • Carl Jackson 1986 - 1990
  • David Swinson 1990 - 1992
  • Peter Nardone 1993 - 2000
  • Nigel McClintock 2000 - 2007
  • Andrew Cantrill 2008–Present

Organists Laureate

  • Martin How 2011 -

Organists Emeritus

  • Derek Holman 2011 -
  • Roy Massey 2011 -

The tower houses a ring of 12 bells cast by the famous Croydon firm of Gillett and Johnston Ltd. in 1936, replacing an earlier ring of eight. The eight original bells were recast and hung with new fittings in a new frame with four additional trebles. The new ring of 12 was dedicated by The Right Rev Lord Bishop of Croydon on 12 December 1936 and the first peal on the new 12 was rung for the Coronation of King George VI in 1937.

The tower and ringers are affiliated to the Surrey Association of Church Bell Ringers.