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Southeast England - Churches and Cathedrals

by WSB

Google Map of Southeast England

Links are given in the text below to maps on the Multimap website; this will initially display an extract from the local Ordnance Survey map zoomed in to the place of interest; you can zoom in and out, see other local points of interest and also switch to other map formats if you prefer; there are also links on the map to Wikipedia articles on other nearby places.

Key

Places where members of certain organisations get free or reduced price admission:

Star-ratings in prominent guide books:

Parish Churches

Almost every old church is worth visiting, although you need to be prepared for possible disappointment because not all churches are regularly open! This list is limited to those given three or more stars by Jenkins plus some other personal favourites.

Barfreston, Kent (J****) (Multimap)
Norman church with lavish sculptural decoration.

Brookland, Kent (J***) (Multimap)
Romney Marsh church with unique wooden bell-tower.

Cobham, Kent (J***) (Multimap)
Contains a remarkable collection of medieval brass memorials and a wonderful Tudor alabaster monument. Don’t miss the adjacent medieval almshouses.

Hythe, Kent (J***) (Multimap)

Lullingstone, Kent (J***) (Multimap)

Minster-in-Sheppey, Kent (J***) (Multimap)

Minster-in-Thanet, Kent (J***) (Multimap)

Speldhurst, Kent (J*) (Multimap)
A fine collection of stained glass windows by William Morris and Burne-Jones. The village setting is very attractive.

Stone, nr Dartford, Kent (J****) (Multimap)
A miniature Westminster Abbey surrounded by chalk pits and industry

Tudeley, Kent (J**) (Multimap)
Chagall stained glass.

Compton, Surrey (J**) (Multimap) A charming church, with a unique (in England) split-level chancel, in an attractive village. On the outskirts of the village don’t miss the Watts Gallerysee Museums below) or the unforgettable Watts Memorial Chapel in the village cemetery. (Multimap)

Dunsfold, Surrey (Multimap)
A village church in a leafy setting in deepest Surrey countryside. The nave is full of strikingly simple 700 year old benches.

Hascombe, Surrey (J***) (Multimap)
A simple country church on the outside, with lavish Victorian decoration inside including delightful murals of fish and nets on the walls.

Lingfield, Surrey (J*) (Multimap)

Stoke d'Abernon, Surrey (J***) (Multimap)

Boxgrove, West Sussex (J***) (Multimap)

Brighton, East Sussex
Several sumptuous Victorian churches, especially St Bartholomew (J***) (Multimap) and St Michael (J****)

Clayton, West Sussex (J**) (Multimap)
Beautiful Saxon chancel arch and wonderful Norman wall-paintings.

1000 year old Saxon arches and 900 year old Norman paintings at Clayton

1000 year old Saxon arches and 900 year old Norman paintings at Clayton

Hardham, West Sussex (J**) (Multimap)
More fascinating 900 year old wall paintings.

Steyning, West Sussex (J***) (Multimap)
The grandest Norman church in the South-East, set in one of the loveliest small towns.

West Firle, East Sussex (Multimap)
A much-loved church in an unspoilt village. It contains a beautiful Elizabethan monument and a richly coloured 20th century (John Piper) stained-glass window.

Winchelsea, East Sussex (J***) (Multimap)

Withyham, East Sussex (Multimap)
This church is on a hillock in a leafy rural setting; the main reason for visiting is to see the most beautiful 17th century monument I know.

In addition, there  very many simple country churches in Sussex, including:
Burton, West Sussex (Multimap)
Didling, West Sussex (J*) (Multimap)
North Stoke, West Sussex (Multimap)
Up Marden, West Sussex (Multimap)
Upwaltham, West Sussex (Multimap)
Warminghurst, West Sussex (J**) (Multimap)

Cathedrals

One of the best ways to enhance a visit to an English cathedral is to attend a Choral Evensong service; many cathedrals have choir schools attached supplying boy choristers … and often girls these days. Choral Evensong is usually celebrated daily, except in school holiday, following centuries-old tradition. In this region Canterbury and Chichester have such choirs.

Canterbury Cathedral, Kent
Perhaps England’s greatest cathedral, built by French architects after a fire in the 12th century, considerably enhanced in later periods not least by the superb 15th century tower. It is particularly noted for its stained glass, comparable with the finest in France, and for its monuments. Don’t miss the crypt and the cloister. (Multimap)

Rochester Cathedral, Kent (Multimap)
Kent’s second cathedral, forming a fine group with the ruins of the castle in a charming corner of the old town.

Guildford Cathedral, Surrey (Multimap)
An interesting 20th century re-interpretation of the Gothic, but not to everyone’s taste. It has an unusually fine position overlooking the town.

Arundel Cathedral, West Sussex (Multimap)
A Roman Catholic cathedral built in the 19th century in a pure French gothic style

Chichester Cathedral, West Sussex (Multimap)
A mainly 12th-13th century building, lovable rather than grand; it contains two outstanding Norman sculptured reliefs and, thanks originally to patronage by an enlightened dean, an unusually fine collection of art works from the last 50 years.

Lancing College Chapel, West Sussex (Multimap)
This is not a cathedral but a 19th century school chapel, but is as fine and impressive as many a cathedral and well worth a visit.

Cathedral-like splendour in a school chapel

Cathedral-like splendour in a school chapel

Resources

Southeast England Vacation Rental Reviews

Southeast England Hotel Reviews

Southeast England Restaurant Reviews

Map

ST Google Map - Southeast England: Interactive, annotated map of southeast England. Satellite views available.

Photos

Photos of Southeast England

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