TQ6344 : Capel church across a field of wheat

near to Capel, Kent, Great Britain

Capel church across a field of wheat.
Capel church across a field of wheat.
St Thomas Becket church, Capel
Grade I listed

Capel was originally founded as a Chapel dedicated to Saint Thomas Becket soon after his murder in 1170.
There is a single stage west tower, nave and chancel, the tower has a pyramidal roof.
The original 12th century chapel probably was a simple building which now comprises the nave.
The chancel and tower arches are 14th century and the present roof with king post styling and heavy beams was built in the 15th century.
The nave has 2 medieval windows to the north, the north wall has extensive remains of 13th century paintings. They were uncovered in 1927 and belong to two distinct periods; The earlier circa 1200, and the later circa 1250. They depict various scenes from the Bible including Cain slaying Abel, which is unusual, but maybe is explained by the dedication of the church to St Thomas Becket and his martyrdom. The paintings appear to have been done by an experienced hand, and are similar to the Rochester Cathedral School.
In 1639 a serious fire destroyed the upper part of the tower. The 3 bells melted and damaged most of the south wall. An appeal was made to the parishioners for financial assistance which was estimated at 510. The money was found and the tower rebuilt.
In the chancel there is an oak Communion rail with the date 1682 and the name Michael Davies.

In the churchyard there is an old yew tree beneath which Saint Thomas a Becket was supposed to have preached. The girth of the tree is nearly 26 feet.

The church is now redundant and under the Churches Conservation Trust.
Capel Parish includes the communities of Capel, Castle Hill,
Colts Hill, Five Oak Green,Postern,Tudeley and Whetsted.
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TQ6344, 122 images   (more nearby )
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Date Taken
Sunday, 25 June, 2006   (more nearby)
Monday, 26 June, 2006
Church   (more nearby)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TQ 637 444 [100m precision]
WGS84: 51:10.5244N 0:20.4270E
Photographer Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TQ 636 441
View Direction
North-northeast (about 22 degrees)
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