Description: Upper Church of St Peter
Date Listed: 20 October 1954
English Heritage Building ID: 437880
OS Grid Reference: TQ6260840643
OS Grid Coordinates: 562608, 140643
Latitude/Longitude: 51.1420, 0.3232
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TQ 62 40 PEMBURY HASTINGS ROAD
13/362 Upper Church of St Peter
Parish church, former Chapel of Ease. 1846-7 on ground provided by the
Marquess Camden, designed by Stephens of Tunbridge Wells; E.W. Stephens
according to Newman, N.E. Stephens according to the Church Guide (see sources
below). The steeple was strengthened in 1886 but was removed in 1984, north
aisle extended in 1894. Coursed local sandstone ashlar, slate roof.
Plan: Nave and chancel with north and south aisles (the north aisle extended
to full length). Tower at the west end of the south aisle. North porch.
Vestry with cellar under on south side of the chancel. Essentially a single
phase building in a Perpendicular Gothic style.
Exterior: Tower of 3 stages with set back buttresses, embattled parapet over
a moulded cornice with carved gargoyle water spouts. Belfry has pairs of tall
lancets with tracery. Small trefoil headed lancets to the ringing floor. 2-
light windows with Perpendicular tracery and hoodmoulds in the lower stage
like those around the rest of the church. Tower west doorway is a 2-centred
arch with moulded surround and hoodmould rising from a continuous dripcourse
round the whole church. South aisle is 3 bays separated by buttresses
containing 3-light windows. Moulded cornice above with parapet and
clerestorey of nave has 3 2-light windows. East end of nave has kneelers
carved with human heads (Victoria and Albert?). East window is 4 lights.
north aisle is 6 bays in the same Perpendicular style. Gabled porch right of
centre with low diagonal buttresses, 2-centred outer arch with moudled
surround and contains good plank door on ornate strap hinges. West end of
north aisle has a 2-light window and 5-light window at west end of nave.
Interior: Nave has a 4-bay open hammer beam roof in Perpendicular style.
Chancel has a plainer 2-bay roof of arch-braced trusses. The chancel arch,
tower arch and arcades are 2-centred arches on diagonally set piers or imposts
with engaged shafts on the corner, moulded caps and bases. Small shoulder-
headed arch doorway to vestry. Plastered walls. Floor of black and red tiles
with sanctuary including encaustic tiles.
Fittings and Furniture: Stone reredos a Perpendicular Gothic blind arcade.
Oak altar rail has relatively plain standards and brackets pierced by
trefoils. Stone pulpit in same Gothic style. Chancel defined by brass rail
on iron standards (maybe put there in the modernisation of 1894). Brass
pulpit on wooden base. Perpendicular style stone font, the sides of its
octagonal bow carved with quatrefoil panels. Pine stalls and benches.
Memorials: Few and of no more than local interest. East window of C19
stained glass. The stained glass window in south aisle is dated 1902 and
small window at west end of north aisle has unusual stained glass signed by
Leonard Walker and dated 1938.
Sources Church Guide (1986).
J. Newman. West Kent and the Weald, Penguin Buildings of England series
M. Standen. Pembury in the Past (1984) Photograph reproduced on p.23 shows the
church complete with its spire.
Listing NGR: TQ6260840643
Source: English Heritage
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.