St. Anthony's Church Alkham
St Anthony of Pamiers, Alkham, Kent
Along the Alkham Valley Road, which runs from a junction with the A260 near Hawkinge eastwards towards Kearsney on the outskirts of Dover, is the village of Alkham with its magnificent medieval church set on a hillside overlooking the village. It is thought that there was once a pagan temple here, replaced by a church after the arrival of St Augustine. The present parish includes not just Alkham and the surrounding area, but also Ewell Minnis, a short distance to the northeast.
The present church is dedicated to St Anthony of Pamiers, known on the continent as Antoninus, and thought by some to have been martyred in Syria. It dates from around the 12th Century with later additions. Among other things of interest inside the church is a tomb slab with a 13th Century Latin inscription thought to be among the oldest in Kent. Interestingly, St Anthony’s can claim to have been the first carbon-neutral church in Kent, with solar panels installed out of sight on the roof in 2012. The church is usually open to visitors during the day.
The churchyard boasts not only some interesting memorials but is managed to support a variety of wildlife native to this part of Kent.
Today St Anthony’s is supported by a friendly and welcoming congregation who will be very happy to welcome you should you decide to visit. There is usually an Evening Service on the 1st Sunday of each month at 6.30 in summer, 4.30 in winter; a Eucharist on the 2nd Sunday at 9.30, and a Family Service at 11.00 on the 3rd Sunday. Large by village standards, this attractive church is popular for events, and also with wedding couples.
St Anthony’s is very fortunate to have the support of the Friends of St Anthony’s, whose fundraising contributes considerably towards the upkeep of the building and is helping us to secure its future as a living parish church.