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The History of Kent

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History of Capel

Capel comes from the Old Northern French word ‘capel’ meaning a ‘Chapel’.


Capel former parish church is a Grade: I listed building, dedicated to Saint Thomas Becket. The Normans first built the church in the 12th century, as a Chapel-of-Ease to Tudeley, with alterations and additions over the following 500 years. A fire in 1639 resulted in the partial rebuilding of the tower. In the mid-13th century, an unknown artist produced a series of wall paintings on the north and south nave walls. In 1798, Edward Hasted described the Capel church as being ‘lately been rebuilt of brick; the chancel seems very antient. It has a tower at the west end, with a small spire set on it’. In the 19th century, the Victorians restored the north wall and chancel. On 8 July 1986, the Churches Conservation Trust took the Capel church under its wing.