History Files


Modern Britain

Gallery: Churches of Kent

by Peter Kessler & Arthur Percival, 27 June 2010. Updated 5 September 2010



Swale Part 4: Churches of Faversham

Gospel Mission Hall

The Gospel Mission Hall is on the north-eastern corner of Tanner's Street and Napleton Road, opposite Reeves Passage. The Hall (shown here in 2005) is an Independent church which is not affiliated to any sect and, although the date of its founding is uncertain, in 2010 it continued to flourish. The Hall's band, which is now known as the Mission Brass, was photographed on the steps of the Hall about 1925, at which time it was called the Gospel Mission Band.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church

Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church is further down Tanners Street in Faversham, on the western side. The church was originally built as a school by the gunpowder factory owners for the children of their staff. The Georgian building next door was built for a tanner about 1747 and is now the presbytery. The Carmelites took responsibility for the parish in 1926, acquiring this site in 1937. The school was now the Empire Cinema, and this was converted into the church.

Faversham Congregational Church

Faversham Congregational Church stood on the south-eastern corner of Newton Road and East Street. The Congregationalists moved here from the Partridge Lane Chapel in 1878. They merged with the Presbyterians in 1972 to become Faversham United Reformed Church, but declining numbers saw them merge with the Methodist at Preston Street. The building (shown here in 1965) was demolished in 1974 and replaced by a block of sheltered housing.

The United Church

The United Church is situated on the eastern side of Preston Street, a few metres north of the junction with Station Road. John Wesley visited Faversham three times. His last visit was the most successful, and Preston Street Methodist Church was opened on the present site in 1808. The building was Georgian-style, but some members were lost after the creation of the Primitive Methodists in 1810. The first building was replaced by the present Gothic building in 1861.

The United Church

The Primitive Methodists from Stone Street Chapel rejoined the church in 1932. The Bible Christians, using the vacant Stone Street Chapel, also merged, shortly before the Second World War. Then the United Reformed Church joined the Methodists in 1974, abandoning their own building in Newton Street and creating the United Church that survives to this day. The building's interior was modified in 1980, with a new floor at gallery level for worship with a hall under it.

Gatefield Lane Chapel

Gatefield Lane Chapel is on the northern side of the lane, off Preston Street. It was opened in 1833 by Calvinistic Baptists and then used by Wesleyan Methodists. Faversham Baptist Church was formed here in 1868 and moved to its own building in 1873. Then the chapel was taken by the Plymouth Brethren before being converted into the Faversham Club about 1887. The building may have been gutted by the architect, Adkins, although the facade might be original.

Three photos and text on this page contributed by Arthur Percival.

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