19th and 20th. Centuries

19th and 20th Centuries

 In 1888 Ewen Christian, who restored a number of other churches in the neighbourhood, carried out a complete restoration of Darenth church. A low plaster ceiling, which had been placed over the chancel, was removed to reveal the original 14th. Century oak rafters. The present eagle lectern, carved in oak, was installed. A gallery at the west end of the church, in which had been installed a barrel-organ, was removed and the present organ installed in the chancel.

In 1889 the existing porch was built to replace the original one which had been there since at least 1600. In 1915 the oak chancel screen was installed as in 1926 were the choir stalls – both were gifts from the Fleet family. In 1922 the vestry was added at the west end of the church to commemorate the fallen of the First World War.

In 1970 the Rev.Graham Thomas had the inspiration to form Project 70, the aim of which was to raise funds to build an extension to the church on the south side. This would consist of a meeting room, with ancillary kitchen and toilets. By 1972 sufficient funds had been raised for the building to be completed and consecrated.

For its time modern in design and concept, St. Luke’s Room blends with the ancient church. The ceiling is formed of laminated wooden beams soaring upwards and outwards from the old outer wall of the church. This has been left in its original state of rough flints and on it placed a simple wooden cross, carved by one of the young parishioners of Darenth. 

 
Oak and Flint Porch
 
Oak and Flint Porch