A Parish of the Diocese of Canterbury under the Episcopal care of the Bishop of Richborough.
1. Front Entrance and Porch LocaleBiznet
Virtual Tour of St.Peter’s
part one Front Entrance and Porch
Welcome to St. Peter's Church! First opened as a Chapel-of-Ease for the fisher folk and harbour of Folkestone in 1862, it was consecrated as an independent Parish by the Archbishop of Canterbury in July 1868. It has provided a place of prayer and worship for the residents of the harbour and East cliff of Folkestone, ever since.
As you approach the buildings of St. Peter's you will see St. Peter's School on the right. On your left is St. Peter's Church and in the corner on the left, between the School and the Church, lies the Vicarage.
Main Door of St.Peter's
As you view the main door of the Church, take a moment to look up
High on the building is a simple crucifix. Lower down over the main door, is a bronze statue of St. Peter. This was placed here in memory of Father Humphrey Stephens, the fourth incumbent of St. Peter's Church, who was Vicar here from 1957-1970. He died in 1986 The statue was designed by Sister Concordia of Minster Abbey and was placed in its present position in 1989
As you now walk towards the Church, take a moment to admire the main doors. These are etched with the keys of St. Peter and are erected in memory of Father Michael Houghton, the sixth incumbent of St. Peter's Church, who was Vicar here from 1990-1998, when he was installed as Bishop of Ebbsfleet. He died the following year, in December 1999. They were designed by the Church architect, Bruno Hooker, of St. Albans
The Porch of the Church is usually open during daylight hours. If both doors are closed due to the weather, please try opening the right hand door. It can be a little stiff!
As you enter the Porch, which provides a long entrance hall to the Church, you will notice some seats on your left. You are welcome to sit here (but please don't leave any mess!). There are also copies of this week's Service Sheets and other news magazines. In the Porch, you will find various signs acknowledging some of the organisations which have been benefactors of the Church; memorial plaques explaining the external memorials; and noticeboards, giving the latest news and information regarding the Church and Parish. Of particular interest are the following:
On your immediate right as you enter, you will see a figure of Christ crucified on the Cross. This forms the memorial to all those members of the Church and Parish who were killed in the two World Wars. It is thought that the figure of Christ comes from the original World War One memorial, which was ost in the 1950's.
If you are interested in further details of this please read more here
As you proceed past the notice boards, on your right you will see an old Church door. This leads through to the Sunday School and to the toilets. However, the door is usually locked, except during service times.
On the left towards the end of the porch, you will see a pencil drawing of the Varne Lightship, drawn by one of its previous Keepers, as a thank you to the Vicars of St. Peter's. For many years the Lightship was manned and was part of the Parish of St. Peter's. The Vicar used to regularly go out to visit the Keepers and take them communion, as part of his regular Parish rounds.
These days the old Lightship has been replaced by a fully automated vessel the historic lightship being laid up in Gillingham. So the more adventurous side of the Vicars life in the Parish has been much reduced!
Ahead of you, at the end of the Porch, you will see a complex steel grill work over glass doors, with the Cipher of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II over it These are the Jubilee Doors and were installed in 1977 in honour of the Queen's Silver Jubilee
The Jubilee doors are usually locked, except during service or community events. We apologise if you do find them locked but at the present time we are unable to fully staff the Church. You will still be able to appreciate some of the points of the remainder of the tour, by looking through the glass. If you find the doors open, however, please remember to be respectful as you enter the main Church building.