John E. Vigars Kent Church Photographs
Image Source: John Salmon
This terrific ragstone-faced church is regularly open and a beacon in more ways than one to those passing by on the main road. Designed by Temple Moore just before the First World War, it was never completed as he had planned. The length of the nave is shorter than hoped and a west tower was never built. Even so, and after a fire in 1992, its interior is one of amazing height and simplicity. Along the south wall the base is bare and relieved by brick arches - giving the appearance of a former south aisle although the closeness of the road means there could never have been one. The Rood Figures date from 1926 and add a rather colourful component to the stark interior, whilst the east window, made in 1931 by Muriel Minter, shows Pope Gregory and St Augustine, the patron saint. On the north wall, though formerly the main reredos, is a huge oil painting of Elisha. This is by the local artist Donald Maxwell - a very religious man (see also Kemsing and Borstal churches). Overpowering, and perhaps not a good example of work by a man better known as an artist in watercolours - it is nonetheless a tour de force.
1851 Census Details
Seating Capacity: Not built
Morning Attendance: Not built
Afternoon Attendance: Not built
Evening Attendance: Not built
Original Build Date/Architect: Temple Moore 1916
Second Restoration: -
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