Dating from the 1400s, the tower was improved as part of the major church restoration in mid Victorian times, receiving a new three-light west window and restored belfry windows.
In 2018, St Mary's was awarded a National Lottery Heritage Fund Grant - Saving Our Saxon Tower. This in addition to several smaller grants has allowed restoration work on the tower to begin.
In 2019 major work on the tower was carried out by primary contractor Eastern Foundry Lead under the guidance of Nicholas Warns, architects. The associated parapets and abutments were overhauled and extensive high-level masonry repairs carried out on the tower, involving painstaking removal of flints and resetting them into new lime mortar. The work has been carried out using traditional medieval materials and methods including hot lime for the mortar.
The asphalt roof coverings on the tower have been taken up, the roof structures repaired and the coverings replaced with lead.
See opposite - Keeping an eye on the work as it progresses to restore the tower.