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The History of Kent

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History of Bicknor

Bicknor comes from the Old English ‘bica’ meaning a ‘Woodpecker, beak-like projection’ and ‘ōra’ as ‘hill-slope, the foot of a slope’; therefore, a ‘slope below the pointed hill’. The first record of Bicknor is in 1186 as Bikenora.


Bicknor parish church is a Grade: II listed building, dedicated to Saint James the Apostle. The Normans built it in the 12th century. In 1798, Edward Hasted describes the Bicknor church as consisting of ‘a nave and two side isles, and a chancel, which is half the length of the church. The nave is double the height of the two isles. There is a low pointed steeple at the south-west corner of it’. The English Gothic Revival architect, George Frederick Bodley, rebuilt the church between 1859 and 1861.