St. Peter's Village - a Brief History
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Researched and written by Bob.
All photographs - Bob.
The village of St. Peter's began life as a pagan Jutish settlement.
main occupation of villagers was farming although, during periods of
the 18th and 19th centuries, many supplemented their income by
branching out into smuggling - the area is networked by tunnels and
caves used for this purpose.
From the middle of the 17th century,
the Mockett family formed an important part of village life when
Richard Mockett bought St. Peter's Farm next-door to the church, part
of this land still survives today as the Village Green.
The Church of St. Peter the Apostle in Thanet (pictured below)
The Vestry governed both the St. Peter's area and that of Broadstairs up until 1856 when Broadstairs became a separate parish.
stone-built church is known to have existed on this site since 1070 and
prior to this, a wooden chapel. During its many years, the current
building has undergone various enlargements, alterations, additions and
renovations. The castellated tower is believed to be the result of
works carried out in the 15th century and the clock-face dates from
1802 although the original internal workings have since been replaced.
earliest legible gravestone, in what is one of England's longest
graveyards, is that of William Norwood who died in May,1623.
|Today, the church
still exercises its entitlement to fly the "White Ensign", a
recognition of the church tower's former role as a Royal Navy
signalling station during the Napoleonic Wars (pictured right).
the right of the church is the Church Hall which was built in 1971-2
and was formally opened by the, now late, Prime Minister Edward Heath
who was born and bred in St. Peter's.
I myself, as a child, was present at the stone laying ceremony (pictured right).
Mockett's Wood (pictured below)
Originally planted in the early 1900's by the Mockett family behind their home in Church Street.
area of woodland is now a public area and can be accessed by one of
several entrances, the one easiest to find - behind the Co-op.
"The Friends of Mockett's Wood", a group of volunteers formed in 1994, now manage this woodland.
The Friends of Mockett's Wood Website
|The Village Sign
plaque on the sign reads: "Following a speech by His Royal Highness The
Duke of York at the Royal Academy in 1920 on the revival of village
signs, the Daily Mail organised a Village Signs competition and
exhibition. Offering a total of £2200 in prizes. Ten awards were made
and the design from which this sign was constructed secured First Prize
The designer was a Ramsgate resident, Mr. P. Matthews.
sign was originally erected against the boundary wall, between St.
Peter's Church and the Baptist Church but was removed during WWII so as
not to assist the enemy if they invaded.
After the war, it first
moved across the road, near to the Red Lion public-house and again in
the 1970's to the Village Green where it stands today.
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