Hilton Church and Parish


The Church of St. Mary Magdalene is an attractive parish church dating mainly from the 15th century. Some masonry from the 12th century remains beside the chancel arch and in the tower, with rather more from the 13th century in the chancel. A round-headed cross with a crucifixion of the early 13th century was found when the tower stairs were rebuilt in 1904-5 and has been set into the west wall of the tower.

The building was extensively restored in the latter half of the 19th century and the stained glass is Victorian. There is a plain, well-proportioned octagonal 15th century font. The tower contains 6 bells, the oldest dating from 1604 (recast in 1898) and others inscribed 1635, 1744 and 1767 with two recent additions from 1987. The Victorian clock mechanism and face were restored in 1971. The movement and striking mechanism are entirely separate, connected only by a trip-lever.

Since 1980, there has been further restoration to the interior of the church. The roof, which contains timbers from the 15th century, has been strengthened. The 16th century communion table was salvaged from Wyton church, together with the oak pews, and the restored pulpit dated 1646 is from Caldecote church.

Hilton was a chapelry of Fenstanton and did not become a separate parish until 1873. For ecclesiastical purposes, the two parishes are now held together under a plurality order, but the civil parishes have remained distinct.