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St Mark's Church

St. Mark’s Church is situated in Herston which forms the western part of Swanage. St. Mark’s Church congregation is drawn from various parts of Swanage but, nevertheless, it has a strong identity as the local ‘village’ church at Herston and this is reflected by the local community through the number of Baptisms, Weddings and Funerals that take place.


About our regular Worship

St Mark’s is a sacramentally directed church where our service on 3 weeks of the month is a Sung Eucharist. We have a small choir to enhance our worship and follow the lectionary readings appointed for Common Worship in the Church of England. We hope to be inclusive in our worship and encourage lay people to participate in the service where ever possible. We are very privileged to be served by a variety of clergy led by our Rector, The Very Reverend John Mann and The Revd Solveig Sonet . St Mark’s, because of its welcoming atmosphere is very popular with visiting clergy who always feel very welcomed. Our services are always followed by a convivial time of refreshment.


All Age Worship

This is a monthly service on the last Sunday of the month at 10am and is intended for all the Church family but has a special provision for families. All Age Worship is not a service of Holy Communion but one of praise and thanksgiving. Music is provided by our lively worship band and we sing well known contemporary worship songs and familiar traditional hymns are sung. The talk is directed to everyone, with a special theme for each service which lasts about 40 minutes and is followed by delicious refreshments. St. Mark’s strive to be welcoming to everyone especially to families with very young children. 


For those who like to receive communion each Sunday there is a short said service at 11.15am following All Age Worship which is always well supported.


Other Services

Additional services are held throughout the year. Special seasonal services celebrate the events of the church year, such as Epiphany and Ash Wednesday.

Other special services include Carols by Candlelight on Christmas Eve, Mothering Sunday, Easter and Harvest. Our Facebook page and church notice board display full details.



Children are welcome at all our services. There is a side chapel with toys and books where young children can play without disturbing the service. A toilet and baby changing facilities are available in the Church Room. Children and families are particularly welcome to attend our All Age Worship Service on the last Sunday of each month.



The choir lead our musical worship at the 10.00am service and at other acts of worship throughout the year, performing additional anthems at services.


Toddler Group

We have our own Toddler Group who meet once a week on a Wednesday between 9-11am during the school term time in the Church Room which adjoins the church. The group is led by a church member who is an Early Years Practitioner and this relationship encourages good links into St. Mark’s School for families.

Prayer and Share

Our prayer and share group meet every Thursday morning from 10-10.45am to which everyone is welcome.


Social Activities

There is a varied social programme throughout the year which includes Coffee Mornings, Summer Barbecue, a Quiz and Harvest Supper and a Christmas Meal.


Support for Mission

We are currently supporting the work of Mission Aviation Fellowship



St. Mark’s CE Primary School

St. Mark’s Church has close association with St. Mark’s Primary School and the children use the church for regular assemblies and seasonal concerts to which families and friends are invited. Members of St. Mark’s congregation support the school through a Diocese initiative, Pray- Bake – Serve, whereby the church regularly prays for the school, members come in and listen to children reading and during the year bake cakes for the staff.



St Mark’s Herston Facebook Page

It is always worth checking our Facebook page to see what is going on! During Lent, Pentecost and Advent there is a daily post which includes an interesting picture a Bible reading and a short reflection. This has proved very popular with over 100 regular followers.



Church Room Hire

The Church Room is available for hire. For details and hiring costs please telephone the contact number stated below.


How to find us

St. Mark’s Church, Bell Street, Swanage, Dorset BH19 2SA

Take the A351 from Wareham, through Core Castle and Harman’s Cross. 200 yards past The Swanage School you will see a road sign indicating ‘High Street’ turn to the right. Take this turning onto the High Street (by building displaying MKL – Welcome to Swanage) then turn immediately right again onto Bell Street – signposted St. Mark’s Church and also a brown information sign to ‘Swanage Costal Park’. (Golden Bengal Restaurant on right hand corner and Globe Pub on left.) St. Mark’s Church is 300 yards up Bell Street on the left.
There is limited parking on roads surrounding the church, some restrictions apply.



Team Rector -The Very Reverend John Mann – Tel: 01929 422916
Assistant Priest – Revd John Cooper – Tel. 01929 423591
Churchwarden – Margaret Chinchen – Tel: 01929 425224
Parish Safeguarding Representative – Margaret Chinchen – Tel: 01929 425224
Church Room Bookings – Margaret Chinchen –Tel: 01929 425224