This parish is entered in Domesday book, which was compiled in the year 1086, under the name "Borne" in the Hundred of "Brige," and the information is given that "a church is there." In 1189 it is mentioned as "Burnes" with "Bruges." Thus for more than a century it seems to have had no other name to distinguish it from Bekesbourne and Bishopsbourne, which were both called "Burnes." But in the thiteenth century the "Patrick" was introduced begin, perhaps, that of the then owner of the manor. In the year 1258 Archbishop Boniface appropriated the church of "Burne Patricii cum capella de Bruges" to the Prior and Convent of Merton, in Surrey, and from that time the name has continued as at present, though with every conceivable variation of spelling. Shortly after the Dissolution of the Monasteries the patronage of the church of Patricksbourne with that of Bridge passed into the hands of the owner of the manor and succeeding owners have exercised the right of presentation ever since.
The Church is renowned for its Norman architecture, particularly the fine South Door and Wheel Window and for its Swiss Stained Glass. An ancient building such as this requires regular maintenance and upkeep. The Friends of St Mary’s (FOSM) was formed to enable the necessary work to continue, regular events are organised by the group including a variety of concerts, recitals and plays
The FOSM have started work on the development of St Mary's. The plan is to build a toilet with a shower and kitchenette facilities and to create a social space for after-service coffee, meetings etc. This should, we hope, be a useful improvement for our congregations - especially those who may have travelled longer distances to baptisms, weddings or funerals - and also for the many pilgrims who visit our beautiful church on one of the four pilgrimage routes that pass through the village. Such a project is not cheap. The current estimate is that it will cost £113,500. We shall be applying for grants but there is still a lot of fundraising that we need to do. Our first short term goal is to raise the £15,500 that we need to apply for the necessary permissions and obtain tenders and to pay for the reports etc that have been created thus far.
If you can help FOSM in any way, by joining the committee or donating please email email@example.com
St Mary’s is fortunate enough to sit on not one but four Pilgrimage routes and regularly sees Pilgrims from all over the world visiting. The North Downs Way, Via Francigena, The Old Way and The Royal Saxon Way all run through the village of Patrixbourne. Over the years various groups of Pilgrims have been to St Mary’s, some even staying overnight in pre-arranged groups before continuing their journeys to Canterbury. In 2018 100 veterans walked through the village on their way to London from France as they recreated The Long Walk Home for many service men from WWI. They stopped for refreshments at the church and nearby recreation ground. June 2019 saw Pilgrims from the L'arche community completing the Pilgrims way challenge. The busiest day for St Mary’s was when 350 pilgrims in one day (a record) visited our beautiful church and all received a warm welcome from our churchwardens and other local villagers showing their support.
Pilgrims visiting Patrixbourne will be able to stamp their Pilgrim Passport using the stamp located at the church. Overnight stays can be arranged for a small fee (which includes a light breakfast) and should be arranged in advance by contacting the churchwardens at firstname.lastname@example.org.
More information on the Pilgrimage routes through Patrixbourne can be found through one of the following websites: The British Pilgrimage Trust, The North Downs Way, Via Francigena, The Royal Saxon Way
Church Photos by Daniel Edward Young
For your Sat Nav, please use the postcode CT4 5BP.
Access to this chuch is good. Parking for large events is available on Bekesbourne Recreation ground.
safeguarding contacts: https://www.churchofengland.org/more/safeguarding/diocesan-safeguarding-contacts