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  • 1341

    Original Church on the site – St Mary de Caye - Nicholas Sowebrand, murderer, flees to the church to claim sanctuary

  • 1443 -1543

    Present Church Built – known as ‘Stella Maris  - our lady, star of the sea’

  • 1506

    Thomas Pounder sails to Iceland

  • 1521


    Pounder Brass completed

  • 1525

    Thomas Pounder dies

  • 1528

    Priory of St Peter & Paul closed. Thomas Wolsey uses the land to start building  his boys college, but falls from grace and church warden William Sabyn purchases the site. The hammerbeam roof originally intended for the college chapel is installed in St Mary Quay after being purchased by Dame Elizabeth Gelget.

  • 1530

    Emme Pounder with Henry Tooley and Robert Daundy send three vessels to the low countries.

  • 1543

    William Sabyn dies.

  • 1551


    Henry Tooley was once one of the richest merchants in Ipswich. He traded cloth, fish, wine and grain and lived with his wife Allicia in a large house and trading hall on St Mary’s Quay.

     As a teenager, Tooley was apprenticed to a member of the Merchant Adventurers Company, at a time when the cloth trade was flourishing, and by 1516 he is recorded as trading 260 bales of cloth between Southampton and Ipswich.

     When Tooley died in 1551, he had no children and left much of his wealth to the people of Ipswich. His tomb and brasses in the north transept reflect his power and wealth, and his charitable foundation helped to provide the almshouses which are still found in Foundation Street.

     Henry Tooley's tomb in the north transept reflects the power and wealth of an important merchant and portman of the town who died in 1551. It was installed following the death of Tooley's wife, Allicia in 1565 and Tooley’s charity acconts record a payment of 16d for the making of a 'platt for Mr Tolyes tombe' and £7.6s.8d, probably for the making of the tomb itself.

  • 1565

    Alice Tooley dies

  • 1949


    The church was cleared of most of its furnishings – the pulpit went to St Peter’s Elmsett, the benches to St Andrews in Britannia Rd, the organ to St Albans in Norwich  and the brasses to Christchurch Mansion.

  • 1959

    The church was rescued from demolition by the Friends of Friendless Churches and £1200 was spent on restoration and adaption for use by The Boys Brigade
    The font was removed to Brantham Church – but no official permission had been received – and after protest from parishioners was finally returned

  • 1973

    The Boys Brigade vacated the building.  It was the vested to The Churches Conservation Trust .

  • 1981


    CCT repaired and replaced the chancel roof and carried out other repairs