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The History of Kent

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History of Biddenden

Biddenden comes from the Old English ‘ing’ a connective particle, linking the 1st and last elements, with ‘denn’ as a ‘woodland pasture’ combined with a personal name; therefore, a ‘woodland pasture connected with Bida’.

Biddenden parish church is a Grade: I listed building, dedicated to All Saints. The Normans built the chancel and nave early in the 13th century, adding the south aisle and porch later in the same century. They built the north aisle early in the following century and constructed the north and south chapels and west tower 100 years later. Robert Mot cast and hung a bell in 1599. Richard Phelps added a treble and tenor in 1712, and five years later cast a priest’s bell. In 1784, Robert Patrick added two trebles. In 1798, Edward Hasted described the Biddenden church as consisting ‘of three isles and three chancels, having a handsome square tower at the west end, with a beacon turret at one corner. In it are six bells’. Alfred Bowell added two trebles and rehung all eight bells in 1915.