St Peter and St Paul, Lingfield - Quire

Dave Godden

Maidstone, United Kingdom

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St Peter and St Paul, Lingfield, Surrey, UK – Quire and Chancel.

3 frame panorama each frame of 5 image HDR shot with a Canon EOS1000D and processed in PS8.

There was a Saxon church on this site well before the Norman Conquest. It may have been small but it did have a tower. The only part that remains visible is the lower portion of the walls by the West Door. Around 965, the church and its lands (about 600 acres) were gifted to Hyde Abbey, Winchester as part of King Edgar’s consolidation of his emerging Kingdom of England.

The church served the needs of the parish until about 1300 when the Cobhams, an important Kentish family (Henry de Cobham was on the Third Crusade with Richard I in 1191) acquired the Manor of Starborough. With the permission of the Bishop of Winchester, the Cobhams rebuilt the church in the mid fourteenth century as their family’s final resting place. The present tower and chancel date from this time.

The First Lord Cobham (1295 – 1361) served Edward III, both as a soldier and diplomat. He fought at Crécy (1346), was one of the first Knights of the Garter and was allowed to crenellate his manor house which then became known as Starborough Castle.

In the next century his grandson, Sir Reginald de Cobham (1382 – 1446) rebuilt the nave and added the north aisle so as to provide the family with an even grander place for family burials. In 1432 he endowed a chantry college of priests with intercessory responsibilities for the repose of his and his family’s immortal souls. This was sited on the western edge of the churchyard. All this involved the Cobhams recovering the advowson or patronage for the church from the Bishop of Winchester.

The church remained in the gift of the Cobhams until the dissolution of the Monasteries in the 1540s when Henry VIII gave it to Sir Thomas Carwarden, one of his Gentlemen of the Privy Chamber. Sir Thomas is buried in Bletchingley church.

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