One of the other great treasures of Lakenheath church are the fantastic collection
of 15th century carved bench ends. Although many of them now show a great deal of
wear, as it to be expected after over 500 years of constant use, they are one of
the finest collections in East Anglia and contain a number of images that are not
to be found anywhere else. One of the most famous is the ‘tiger and the mirror’,
an image that refers to the medieval belief that to steal a tigers cubs you must
leave a mirror in their place. The tigress would then be distracted by the mirror,
fascinated by her own reflection, leaving the thief to depart in peace.
The pews date to the late 15th century and we have evidence that they were entirely
paid for by members of the parish. In his will of 1483 local landowner William Lacy
left a sum of money for the ‘stooling’ of the church.