The parish church is a symbol of continuity, a cornerstone of the urban and rural landscape, and a treasure trove often as rich in cultural history as any museum. This compact and accessible guide explores all of these aspects of the parish church. It begins by examining why churches are built where they are, and then goes on to explain how both church buildings and churchyards have changed over time. It also describes the fixtures and furnishings in the parish church, including fonts, screens, stained glass and monuments, explaining their ritual and symbolic purpose and how their significance has shifted over time. Lavishly illustrated with colour photographs, this book will provide an indispensable introductory guide to anyone who is curious about the nation’s parish churches and wants to explore them further.