St Mary

The mixture of informal path over a little bridge into a churchyard full of trees and shrubs is the perfect introduction to the military looking Norman tower.

Brook, Kent

Opening times

Sorry, there are no regular opening times for this church.


The Street
TN25 5PF

In fact the tower, probably built in the closing years of the 11th century, is later than the rest of this delightful church, which is one of the earliest complete Norman churches in the country, perhaps dating from the 1080s.

Its complex ownership, essentially meaning that it belonged to Canterbury Cathedral rather than being a simple parish church, explains why it has survived so unaltered. The architecture of the interior is very plain and simple, built for strength and solidity rather than show.

But the insides were made showy with wall paintings in the 13th century, and these are some of the best in Kent, indeed they rank with the best in England. Those in the chancel are the most outstanding, and are what remains of a scheme of roundels that once covered a large area. They contain scenes from the life of Christ, and other stories that enlarge on the Bible stories. Their colours have changed and faded with the passing of the century: what are now blacks were once bright red, for example.

There are other paintings in the nave, not so well preserved, including one of St Christopher. There is also wall painting in what was a private chapel in the tower, but this is only open by prior appointment.

  • Social heritage stories

  • Glorious furnishings

  • Fascinating churchyard

  • Captivating architecture

  • Walkers & cyclists welcome

  • Space to secure your bike

  • Parking within 250m

  • On street parking at church

  • Level access to the main areas

  • Dog friendly

  • Accessible toilets nearby

  • Church of England

Contact information

Other nearby churches

St Gregory & St Martin

Wye, Kent

There has been a church here, dedicated to St Gregory, since early Saxon times, rebuilt around 1290.

St Mary the Virgin

Hastingleigh, Kent

This beautifully simple building is in a valley about a mile from Hastingleigh village, there may have been a church here in the 6th century, but the present building is largely Norman and Early English.

St Mary the Blessed Virgin

Brabourne, Kent

A church has existed on this site since Saxon times, but the oldest part of the present building dates from 1144.