St Mary's Church, Eastwell

St Mary's Church, Eastwell, consists of the ruins of a former Anglican parish church in the hamlet of Eastwell, Kent, England. It has been designated by English Heritage as a Grade II listed building, and has been under the care of the charity, the Friends of Friendless Churches, since 1980. The charity holds the freehold with effect from 20 March 1980. The ruins are a Scheduled Monument.

History

In 1951 the roof of the nave collapsed, and the remaining shell of the church was demolished in 1956, leaving only the footings, the tower, and the 19th-century mortuary chapel.

Architecture

All that now remains are the tower and the wall of the south aisle, dating from the 15th century, and a mortuary chapel from the 19th century. The ruins of the tower and aisle wall are constructed in flint and plaster with stone quoins. The tower is supported by three-stage buttresses and it has a doorway with a string course above. In the tower is a two-light Perpendicular window. The bell openings date from the 18th century and they also have two lights. The summit of the tower is battlemented. On the lower stage of the tower is a mutilated consecration cross in knapped flint. The blocked arch to the former nave has octagonal piers. In the aisle wall are two two-light windows. The chapel is constructed in chalk with a tiled roof. It has lancet windows and its interior is vaulted.

Monuments

The internal fittings and monuments have all been removed. Most of the monuments are in the care of the Victoria and Albert Museum. These include two chest tombs, one to the memory of Sir Thomas Finch who died in 1580, and the other to Sir Moyle Finch who died in 1614. Another memorial in the Victoria and Albert Museum is to Elizabeth Finch, 1st Countess of Winchilsea. In the churchyard is a memorial to Richard Plantagenet (Richard of Eastwell).