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Cliffe-at-Hoo

History of St Helen’s, Cliffe-at-Hoo, Kent.

There has been a church dedicated to St Helen (Daughter of Coel - Old King Cole) since 774 AD, when King Offa of Mercia, caused the building of a wooden church at Cliffe.  This was probably replaced by a stone church sometime in the 11th century, but no records of this exist.

The current church, built in the typical Kent style of alternate layers of Kent Ragstone and squared flint, dates from 1260.  St Helen’s is huge; at the time that the church was built, Cliffe had a population of about 3000, and was a thriving port.  The church has both transepts and north and south aisles.  Its walls are crowned with battlements.  The South porch, a large blocky excrescence has a muniments room above the entrance

The two 14th century misericords are plain corbels with supporters, the modern replacement misericords, with the exception of N01 and S01, are also plain corbels, which probably indicates that they are copies of the originals.  N01 and S01 are both angels holding shields, it is unknown if these are copies or modern designs.

The official website of St Helen’s, Cliffe-at-Hoo.

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