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The History of Kent

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History of West Langdon

West Langdon comes from the Old English ‘lang’ meaning ‘long, tall’ with ‘dūn’ as a ‘hill’; therefore, a ‘long hill or down’. The prefix ‘west’ distinguishes it from East Langdon


West Langdon parish church is dedicated to Saint Mary the Virgin. Monks from the Abbey of West Langdon built the first church early in the 12th century. Following the dissolution, the church received little attention as it passed from crown to manor. By 1660, it required restoration, and Sir Thomas Peyton set about the repairs, although thieves stole the timber, purchased for the project, together with the pews and pulpit, putting pay to the renovations. In 1800, Edward Hasted described the West Langdon church as having ‘been long in a ruinated state’. By 1869, the Victorians built a new church as a Chapel-of-Ease to St Augustine’s, East Langdon.