Otterden Chapel stands next door to Otterden
Place, on the eastern side of the meeting point between Otterden Road
and Bunce Court Road. Otterden is now in the parish of 'Stalisfield
with Otterden', but before the Dissolution it had a parish of its own,
as did neighbouring Burdefield. The now lost church of St Laurence
Burdefield consisted of two small isles and a chancel, without a
steeple, and stood about fifty yards eastwards from the corner of the
later Otterden Place.
Formerly belonging to Davington Nunnery, near Faversham,
the old church was probably abandoned at the Dissolution. By the reign of
Charles I it was a ruin. In 1753-1754, the owner of Otterden Place constructed
the present chapel in red brick with rustic quoins and window-cases. It was
built over the foundations of part of the old church, which stood about six
metres (twenty feet) more towards the east. The chapel is now normally used
for services only in the summer.
The Church of St Peter & St Paul,
Newnham, sits on the south-west corner of The Street and Warren
Street in the centre of the village. The settlement developed in
the valley beneath a Briton hill fort. During the reign of Henry I
(1110-1135), Hugh de Newenham was lord of the manor and gained his
name from the village. He is believed to have built the original manor
house, as well as beginning the building of the church (which is seen
in these photos from 1999).
Hugh's son, Faulk de Newenham, founded Davington
Nunnery nearby in 1153, which held the advowson of the church. The
nunnery had failed by the time of the Dissolution. The church itself was
built over the course of twenty years in the late thirteenth century. The
following century a chapel was added for the family at the manor house,
Champion Court. The church fell into decay in the late 1500s, and was
unsympathetically restored by the Revered James Bower in the 1860s.
The Church of St Giles, Tonge, stands on
the eastern side of Church Road, a little under three hundred metres
(yards) north of the railway line which cuts through the hamlet.
Tonge was mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1087, although construction
of its church was not begun until the 1200s. Additions were made in the
fourteenth century, probably including the semi-detached south tower,
as this is the period in which most English churches gained a tower.
The building is mostly flint, with red brick buttresses,
chancel and plain tiled roofs. A good deal of Roman tile is in evidence in
the building, as well as some curious red-coloured stone in the lower walls.
The nave and aisles are contained under a single roof. The church was restored
in the early seventeenth century, and again in 1893, when the timber-framed
porch was installed. Inside, a seven-sided pulpit was fitted in the seventeenth
century with an incised lozenge decoration.
All photos on this page contributed by Arthur