Who knows why this church has a hole in the wall? Heavenlyjane knows: It was designed to let lepers watch what went on in the churches from a safe distance. Although we now know that there is very little risk of contagion, people in the Middle Ages were terrified of contracting leprosy and lepers were forced to stay well away from everyone else even to the extent of observing church rituals through a little hole called a leper's squint or leper's hole.
This particular leper's squint is located at St. Cuthbert's in Aldingham UK. Matthew Emmett has a beautiful selection of photos of this twelfth century church, with excellent commentary, at Castle Blog!!
The leper's squint was a type of hagioscope, a window set at an oblique angle in a church wall to permit people to see the altar from areas where it was not otherwise visible. When the hagioscope went through to the exterior of the church, it was usually intended for use either by lepers or by anchorites (hermits who lived in a cell built against the wall of the church).
I should make the point that specialists in medieval church architecture heartily disagree with each other on the leper vs. anchorite interpretations in various settings.