St John’s Church is a key landmark at the heart of Copthorne village and is surrounded by a historic and well-maintained church yard. The Lych Gate at the entrance of the church serves also as an official War Memorial listing the local names of those that were enrolled during the First World War. It was erected in 1897 and originally given to the parish as a well-cover for the village well, located on the green opposite the Junior School. It was moved to the Eastern entrance of the church yard to prevent it from falling into disrepair.
The Church is a mid-Victorian church which was built in the 1870’s as a generous gift of Lady Jane Lampson and her husband, Sir Curtis Lampson, Baronet, of Rowfant. Prior to that Copthorne had largely been part of the ancient Anglo-Saxon parish of Worth. Sir Curtis was an American living in this country while laying the first trans-Atlantic communication cable. The Kelly’s Directory of Kent, Sussex & Surrey of 1881 records that in those days the church cost £3,500 to build. The interior brickwork consists of the Early English style of red and white bricks, some distinctive decorative black bricks and a number of stained-glass windows presented by several members of the Lampson family. Inside the church there are numerous items that are of great heritage value such as the main altar, which is carved out of solid oak, war memorial tablets and the little carillon with two chromatic octaves to name a few.