A man named Dodd travels to the dilapidated rural town of Temphill to take up employment with an old friend. After discovering his friend to be missing, Dodd comes across journal entries and the testimony of a presumably-crazed neighbour which indicate that some dark presence dwelling beneath the church in High Street may be responsible. Investigating the tunnels which lead below the church, Dodd encounters a terrifying entity, and escapes Temphill by the luckiest of flukes. Despite this, he subsequently feels a strange desire to return to the old church, before mysteriously disappearing.
- Richard Dodd, a down-on-his-luck man looking for gainful employment.
- John Clothier, an elderly resident of Temphill with knowledge of the supernatural.
- Albert Young, Dodd's missing friend, known only by his writings and the accounts of Clothier.
Behind the Mythos
"The Church in High Street" was first published in the anthology Dark Mind, Dark Heart, edited by August Derleth, through Arkham House in 1962. It was later included in Campbell's own anthology The Inhabitant of the Lake and Less Welcome Tenants in 1964, and appeared in the 1994 collection Shadows over Innsmouth.
- "The Church in High Street" is set in Campbell's fictional Severn Valley, England, the setting for many of his later Mythos stories. The locations of Yuggoth and Leng are also made mention of.
- Several Mythos entities are referenced, including Yog-Sothoth (to whom the temple beneath the church is said to be dedicated), Cthulhu, the Old Ones, Azathoth, Nyarlathotep and Dholes.
- "The Church in High Street" was Ramsey Campbell's first published Mythos work.
- Campbell's original title for the story was "The Tomb-Herd."