St Margaret’s Church

 
 

St Margaret’s Church is on Church Road, Ifield, DA13 9AR, best found by taking Henhurst Road (signed “Sole Street” from the Gravesend East turn off the A2) towards Jeskyn’s Park, but turning right before you reach Jeskyn’s).

There is a service here every Sunday at 9.30am, with sermon and hymns. These follow a regular pattern each month:-images

1st and 3rd Sundays: Holy Communion (Common Worship)

2nd Sunday: All-age worship (refreshments served afterwards)

4th Sunday: All-Age Holy Communion

5th Sunday: Matins (Book of Common Prayer)

 

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St Margaret’s church history

The Church is of Norman two-cell form. It is mentioned in the Textus Roffensis c1115. The current building, at approximately 50’ long and 20’ wide one of the smallest in the Diocese of Rochester. The record of Rectors begins in 1227. It is listed Grade 2, and is not in a Conservation Area. It was “re-edified” (altered) in 1596, and had major restorations in 1796 and 1838. The furnishings all date from the C19th. A modern stone porch on the south side was built in 1952 to replace a wooden one which was burnt down. It is in good repair, generally, having undergone major roof repairs in 2012 following the theft of lead.

The Church is situated to the south of the A2, cutting it off from the majority of the parish. It is reached by a country (unlit) road which passes to the west of the Church. The nearest “neighbours” on the other three sides are farmers’ fields. Ifield is a hamlet which consists of no more than 12 houses. There is a well-kept Churchyard, with a few spaces left for burials, but ample spaces for interment of cremated remains for many years. Many people visit the Churchyard. The most significant and largest memorial is to the Colyer-Fergusson family. Outside the Church boundary, by the road, is a small World War One war memorial in front of a large stone cross.

To see aerial photos of the Church, taken by David Rice, please go to http://www.dronetek.co.uk

The Church seats 60-70 people, on pews, with a gallery which is accessed by wooden stairs. This contains a working organ, now little played. The oak altar is fixed to the east wall. There are pulpit (part of an old three-decker) and lectern, but no choir stalls. A vestry was added to the north of the chancel in 1952 and completely re-built in 2001 to include a kitchen and a toilet. The plate is plain silver: a paten and chalice for Sundays and a small set for Home Communions, a ciborium, and a flagon for baptism water. The C19th stone font is situated opposite the south entrance door.

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There are four stained glass windows dating from the C19th and C20th, the largest of which is at the East end, and eight gravestones in the nave and chancel floor. A small war memorial and book of remembrance is kept at the West end of the Church.

The Church is generally kept locked but is open from 3-5pm most Sunday afternoons, May to September. If access is required at other times please ring the Priest-in-Charge on 01474 249792.

History of Ifield and Singlewell – exhibition of photos, artefacts and documents – Saturday October 1 and Sunday 2nd 2016, 2-5pm, in the Church. Free entry, refreshments available. Ending with Harvest Festival service at 5pm on the Sunday. ALL WELCOME.

 
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