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The History of Kent

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History of Bekesbourne

Bekesbourne comes from the Old English ‘burna’ meaning a ‘stream’ -  in this case the Little Stour. In the late 12th century, it gained a manorial affix from the de Beche family. The Domesday Book records Bekesbourne as Burnes and Borne.


Bekesbourne parish church is a Grade: I listed building, dedicated to Saint Peter. The Normans built the nave and tower in the 12th century, with the chancel in the following century. In 1800, Edward Hasted described the Bekesbourne church as consisting of ‘one isle, a high chancel, and a small south sept or cross chancel, having a low roofed tower at the west end, in which are two bells. The building seems to be very antient; it is long and narrow, and from the smallness of the few windows in it, is very obscure, even in the middle of the day’. The Victorians carried out major restoration works between 1881 and 1890. In 1884, Mears and Stainbank replaced a pair of bells with four, and added two trebles in 1890, to complete a ring of six.


Bekesbourne railway station opened on the London Chatham and Dover Railway’s Canterbury to Dover extension, on 22 July 1861…. more