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Monument details

HER Number:TR 23 NW 98
Type of record:Monument
Name:Site of Chapel of St Botolph (St Bartholomew's), Folkestone

Summary

Probable site of the Chapel of St Botolph (St. Bartholomew's). Building excavtions revealed a number of Roman building fragments, a villa complex, along with a rectangular building with a sunken room, and saxon burials in the walls and outisde. It seems that the building originally was a mausoleum whih was later converted into a chapel. Whether this was in the Saxon period or later Roman period is unclear. The saxon burials dated from the 7th - 8th centuries.


Grid Reference:TR 2354 3667
Map Sheet:TR23NW
Parish:FOLKESTONE, SHEPWAY, KENT

Monument Types

  • WALL (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • MAUSOLEUM (Roman - 101 AD? to 409 AD?)
  • CHAPEL (CHAPEL, Early Medieval or Anglo-Saxon to Post Medieval - 410 AD to 1600 AD?)
  • INHUMATION (Early Medieval or Anglo-Saxon - 600 AD? to 799 AD?)

Associated Finds

  • SHERD (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • TILE (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)

Full description

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Chapel of St Botolph. Leland (1535-1543) says "Towards a quarter of a mile out of the town is a Chapel of St Botulfe, on a likelyhood of further building sometime". (2, 6)

A group of 5 Roman building foundations were uncovered between 1869 and 1875 in the east end of Folkestone in a field known as "Chapel Field", immediately east of the harbour branch of the railway and between that and the Folly. These included a pillared hypocaust, and a small two-roomed building with an underground crypt. Skeletons were found in the walls of this building and some outside. It is suggested as having been a church. (1)

The town accounts for 1543 mention St Botulppe (4) and in 1529 Thomas Curtice, shipman, wished to be buried in the Chapel of St Botolph. (6)

Excavations in Folkestone revealed a group of buildings, probably representing a second villa complex (TR 23 NW 6). Two of the buildings, of which one was seen again in 1952, lay a little higher up the ridge and certainly within Chapel Filed, the site of St Bartholomew's chapel, which Leland (2) could still observe, with a 'likelihood of further building' around it. The general form of the buildings may suggest that a Roman tomb-house become the nucleus of St. Botolph's, where a name of sorts was added. The mortar and masonry was reminiscent of that found in Saxon structures. Only the Botolph dedication is not conspicuously early, but that could have been changed. (3)

Mentioned in report (5).

An article in the Folkestone Herald from 19th April 1952 describes the discovery of 6 skeletons by workmen digging a trench to serve new housing. The trench adjoined 29 Warren Road and encountered a skull at a depth of 3 ft. Further digging under 'the adjoining house' (29?) found five more skeltons over three days. The skeletons were aligned east-west and coffin fixtures were also found. At a depth of 4ft 6 in the workmen encountered a wall running 'slightly at an angle' to Warren Rd. To one side was a concrete floor conrtaining fragements of Roman pottery and tiles.(8)


<1> Jenkins, R. C., 1876, On a Roman Hypocaust Discovered at Folkestone A.D. 1875, Arch Cant 10 1876 173 (R C Jenkins) (Article in serial). SKE8044.

<2> Arch Cant 29 1911 236 (A Hussey) (OS Card Reference). SKE34945.

<2> Hussey, A., 1911, Archaeologia Cantiana Vol. 29. Chapels in Kent, Arch Cant 29 1911 236 (A Hussey) (Article in serial). SKE8032.

<3> Rigold, S. E., 1973, Roman Folkestone Reconsidered, Arch Cant 87 1972 32 (S E Rigold) (Article in serial). SKE8045.

<4> Folkestone 1883 27 (S J Mackie) (OS Card Reference). SKE43427.

<5> Southern Water Services, 1993, Dover & Folkestone Wastewater Treatment scheme Environmental Statement (Unpublished document). SKE6815.

<6> Hasted, E, 1798, The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent Volume 8, Page 172 (Monograph). SKE7940.

<7> Page, W. (ed), 1932, The Victoria History of the Counties of England: Kent Volume III, pages 114 - 115 (Monograph). SKE7810.

<8> Folkestone Herald, 1952, Six skeletons unearthed by workmen: may fix the site of lost St Botolph's Church (Newspaper). SKE53518.

Sources and further reading

Cross-ref. Source description
<1>Article in serial: Jenkins, R. C.. 1876. On a Roman Hypocaust Discovered at Folkestone A.D. 1875. X pages 173 - 177. Arch Cant 10 1876 173 (R C Jenkins).
<2>OS Card Reference: Arch Cant 29 1911 236 (A Hussey).
<2>Article in serial: Hussey, A.. 1911. Archaeologia Cantiana Vol. 29. Chapels in Kent. XXIX p217 - 258. Arch Cant 29 1911 236 (A Hussey).
<3>Article in serial: Rigold, S. E.. 1973. Roman Folkestone Reconsidered. LXXXVII pages 31 - 41. Arch Cant 87 1972 32 (S E Rigold).
<4>OS Card Reference: Folkestone 1883 27 (S J Mackie).
<5>Unpublished document: Southern Water Services. 1993. Dover & Folkestone Wastewater Treatment scheme Environmental Statement.
<6>Monograph: Hasted, E. 1798. The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent Volume 8. Page 172.
<7>Monograph: Page, W. (ed). 1932. The Victoria History of the Counties of England: Kent Volume III. pages 114 - 115.
<8>Newspaper: Folkestone Herald. 1952. Six skeletons unearthed by workmen: may fix the site of lost St Botolph's Church.