The Bell Tower

The Bell Tower

The bell tower, erected in the 13th. Century, has no structural staircase to reach the lower stages. There are three bells, one of which has no inscription but it is thought by the Whitechapel Bell Foundry to date from Circa 1400. The second one is inscribed ‘Stephanus Swan’ and dated 1609. The third was made by C&G Mears in Whitechapel in 1856.

The mounting for the bells, which had become unsafe, has since been repaired and strengthened. The bell ringers may thus again summon the faithful to prayer without fear for their own safety!

 

 

The room in the base of the bell tower was for many years used for storage, however it has been recently converted into a 'Lady Chapel'  dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary and St John The Divine. This dedication is in part due to the fact that much of the materal used to furnish the chapel came, came by kind permission of the Bishop of Rochester, from the now disused Church of St John The Divine in Chatham. The room is small and peaceful and a perfect place just to sit and be silent, to pray and of course to light a candle. 

The chapel was formally blessed and dedicated by James Langstaff,  Bishop of Rochester at our service on Sunday 26th August 2012. The view below is taken through the door of the chapel and also displays the way in which the excess Laudian altar rails were used in the past to make a screen door for the tower space