Pembury History

St. Peter's Upper Curch

St Peter’s with spire – pre 1984.     Taken by Mike Miller from his own kite.


Much of this page was researched by Jill Marshall, former church warden,  and has been submitted by John Hawker.

This is very much a work in progress – more to come.

To come – a brief history of the building.

To come – a chronological list of clergymen, vicars, wardens, vergers, etc.

Notes on changes to the church    by John Hawker


Below- extract from Outlook  June 1992 on the reordering of the upper church.

The following donated photographs  (a) to (g) need proper annotation.
The only information supplied so far has been that they show the church prior to ‘re-ordering’.
This is church talk for a re-arrangement of furnishings and fixings.   More details would be appreciated.

(a) Donated by John Evans

(b)  Donated by John Evans

(c)   Donated by John Hawker

(d)    Donated by John Hawker

(e)   Donated by John Hawker

(f)   Donated by John Hawker

(g)   Donated by John Hawker

The Clock Tower / Bell Tower

Periodically, the clock mechanism needs some adjustments to maintain its credibility as a time piece.  In 2017 this duty is undertaken by Phillip Murrell and John Hawker who shin up the tower’s ladder to an upper storey chamber for the re-calibration exercise.  They have observed quite a collection of names and dates of previous visitors to this upper chamber and Philip has started to record the names. With no visitors’ book it appears to have been a tradition to leave your name as a mark of your presence in the tower.  Through chance conversations around the village it was suggested having this information placed on the village history web site, and so an expedition team was assembled to ascend the tower and photograph the clock mechanism and some of the handywork of past visitors. The photos were taken in the clock section of the tower, housing the mechanism, not the clock face. Nearer the roof is the bell section housing the single bell and the single clock face.  The bell is activated by a single rope passing through two tower floors down to the entrance hall. The clock mechanism drives the clock hand spindles up to the clock face.  There is also a set of obsolete connecting wires running from the mechanism area toward the bell above.  This was from the days when the clock mechanism was able to strike the bell at set intervals (probably on the hour).  The clock and its mechanism date back to the building of the church in 1847.  A later addition was a modern electric motor that raises the weight needed to drive the mechanism, thus eliminating the need to send parishioners into the tower to wind the clock every day

Below is a set of photographs (more to follow on subsequent visits) and an incomplete list of noted visitors (and dates if known).

This section is still a work in progress – more detail to follow.

( Better quality pictures to follow )


 Inscribed Name

 Additional Remarks or Comments          (Compiler’s Notes)

Adams, H
Adams, J   45/48/49            (It would appear that J Adams made 3 visits to the clock room, 1948 possibly  being a particularly memorable occasion)
 Adley, Ernest  4 The Mount, P
 Atkinson, P

 Baldock(s?), Phillip  195    (Date – last digit missing)
 Bishop, F  Clock started by F. Bishop 17.8.40
 Botton (or Botten), G  (‘Googly’)  16.5.33

 Camford (Comford or   Cornford?), Richard  2000
 Campbell, Richard  Repaired trap door   23.9.2000
 Carr++++, R J  13.9.15   ?  (His understudy Feb 1925  –  Meaning the anonymous understudy to the above person [RJC])

 Davis, Ashley
 Day  1993 Kent College 
 Dean, Reg  Reg Dean, 20th Balham & Tooting Scouts (G.S.M. – Group Scout Master)
 Dietrich, Wolf  Vienna
 Dunlop, Margaret  1957
 Dunn, David  Electrical contractor
 Durpty (looks like), R  16.5.33

 Fenner, Gerald  1945
 Ferm (looks like), Kay  13.10.1956  (Unsure of last digit)
 French, Roger  1950
 Fricklyer  22.1.2009  (Unsure of first 2 letters: – It could be that first 2 letters are Br, which would then make Bricklyer, or with the addition of an ‘a’: Bricklayer) 

 Godfrey, Brian  21.3.59
 Gower, J
 Grant, R

 Hales, Angela  17.10.1953
 Hea## (or Mea##), Wesley J   2.1.12     (## uncertain letters)

 Jenner, Colin  1943
 Johnson, Ann  5.9.58
 Johnstone, Anne  58  (1958)

 Kenworthy, G  Dec 1950  (Likely to be the 23rd)
 Kenworthy, R J  23.12.50
 Kirkham, D  Oct 1956  (Unclear last digit)

 Latter, G  16.5.33
 Lovell, C  1973

 Manwaring , C  20.12.57    (Name looks like Manwaring)
 Marks, G  1940
 Mullard, Ivy  1957    (Name looks like Ivy, could be Jill)  
 Murphy, Ian  1957 
 Murrell, Emma  (During 1980s)

 Nicholl, Andrew  8.10.60
 Noakes, M M  1958
 Noakes, Roger  3.11.52

 Oakshott, D
 O’Neill, Kelly  Kelly O’Neill from Strood      22.1.2009

 Parkes, D  1936
 Perkins, Yvonne  26 M 42  (Central ‘M’ probably an 11, therefore 26.11.42)
 Purdy, Brian (?) C

 Rashant, G  1925
 Rickard  1982
 Rodney  1982
 Russell, Anna  7.7.93
 Russell, Barbara  Barbara Russell, Parish Clerk 7.7.93
 Russell, Paul  7.7.93
 Russell, Phillip  7.7.93 

 Seward, Margaret Ann  1943
 Short, Dorothy  1958 
 Short, Rosemary  5.9.58
Skilton, R  5.9.5#  ( # Unclear last digit, though probably 8)
 Skinner, David  1950
 Smith, D  May 73  (1973)
Smith, Eileen  194#  (# Unclear last digit)
 Spears, Camilla  1993 Kent College 
 Spracklin(g), C J  2.5.43
 Standen, Mary  1943

 T+++t, D P  1958  5 Camden Ave P.
 Thatcher, M  16.5.33 
 Tizzard, Susan  Nov 53  (1953)
 Turner, A D C  2.5.43

 Waghorn, George  25.3.1890
 Waghorne ??     (looks like  Ray or Roy?)
 Ward, Christine  1909 or 8.7.09  (Both dates unclear)
 Wheeler, R  26.2.49
 Wignall, Clare  22.8.58
 Wignall, Elizabeth  18.4.58
 Wooden, John
 Worsley, Rosemary

 Young, Colin   7.11.59

List compiled by Phillip Murrell   2017                   Photographs by Tony Nicholls     2017

St. Peter's Upper Church

IMPORTANT !!!     This needs your help.  All contributions will be credited.  If you have any further information or corrections please contact me –
Tony Nicholls      email:   or