THIS Church was bombed by hostile aircraft on August 15th, 1940, and entirely wrecked, except for the walls, a portion of the roof, and some ornaments, The damage has been assessed at £2,474, but in all probability the total cost of restoration will be £3,000. We cannot tell what the Government will be able to do by way of compensation when the war is over.
Meanwhile, two matters require immediate attention - hence this appeal. They are:
1. The nave and chancel of the Church, as well as the south Chapel are in a state of confusion ; debris must be cleared away, the roof needs supports (else it will fall in), and a covering over it. Only in this way can the pews and other furniture be preserved from damage by bad weather. The estimated cost is £165.
2. At the present time a Chapel has been fitted up for worship at the Vicarage, but it is not adequate for all purposes. The Parochial Church Council, however, feel that one of the Chapels in the Church - the North one - should be restored at the earliest opportunity, so that all the Church services and ministrations, including marriages, may take place therein, leaving the final restoration of the main edifice till the end of hostilities. The estimated cost for this is about £250, at least, but this does not include any amount for the repair of the harmonium or for the organ, both of which are probably so damaged as to be beyond repair. Needless to say, we should be most grateful for the gift of a new organ at a later date. By the kindness of the late Lord Brabourne, this chapel was set apart for worship some years ago, and has been in constant use— week-days especially - until the morning of the fateful day.
This Church, which has suffered so severely is a twelfth century building, possessing several monuments of interest, including a famous one by Evesham. The South Chapel contains the memorials of the Roper and Tyler families, and the North one of the Knatchbull-Hugessen family. Luckily, nearly all these monuments have suffered no harm.
As the cost of printing has to be considered, this appeal does not give all the details we should like to place before our friends, but we are able to print two photographs, showing much of the damage. For these we thank the Editor of the “Kent Messenger.” The Vicar will give any further information gladly if desired.
We are making a general appeal now, to include funds for the whole Church. It is important that these should be in hand, so that the work of restoration may be carried out as soon as ever circumstances permit. We know that there are many friends of Lynsted Church, and we look with confidence to their generosity.
It may he added that much has been done during the past twenty years to restore the Church and the Hugessen Chapel, some £1,500 having been spent in this way. The parishioners have been keenly associated in all the work carried out. Now, however, we venture to seek help from far and wide, as well as from our own people, so that our Church may ere long possess once more its former beauty and usefulness.
The final word to add is that the beautiful stained-glass windows have all been shattered, and their value is not included in any of the sums stated in this appeal. These can only be replaced by personal gifts.
Donations may be sent to the Hon. Treasurer of the Parochial Church Council— Mrs. Belinda Dixon, “Cambridge,” Teynham, Kent; or to myself. A receipt will be sent in each case.
L. E. A. EHRMANN, Vicar,
[Thanks to Society Member, Maggie Goodwin, for allowing us to reproduce her original copy of this pamphlet.]