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Christ Church

Christ Church Hougham in Dover The picture on the left shows Christ Church, Hougham in Dover, shortly before it was demolished to make way for a block of flats.

It stood on the Folkestone Road, next to The Alma public house.


A number of my relatives were baptised here in the period 1850 to 1940.  It was in this church that my parents were married in 1937.

"In March 1843, application was made to the Board of Ordnance for a piece of land to build a church in the Dover part of Hougham Parish, and the Board generously responded by surrendering nearly an acre of ground, which had previously been used as a garden, situated between Military Road and Folkestone Road, the site being chosen near the boundary of St. Mary's Parish, because the congregation was expected to come from that direction.  The land was given on the condition that there should be space reserved in the church for 50 soldiers, and a proportionate number of officers.  The money for the erection of the building was quickly subscribed.  The foundation stone of Christ Church was laid on the 2nd of August, 1843, by the Rev. Thomas Morris, Rural Dean of Dover, Rector of St. James,s and Vicar of Hougham.  Under the stone was placed a list of the subscribers to the building fund, some coins of the realm then current, and a parchment, on which was written: 'In the Parish of Hougham, otherwise Huffam, in the Borough of Dover, in this County of Kent, the foundation stone of this church, dedicated to our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, was laid on Wednesday, the 2nd ay of August, 1843, by the Rev. Thomas Morris, Vicar of the Parish.  Trustees: The Venerable Walter Augustus Shirley, Archdeacon of Derby; John Pemberton Plumptre, Esq., M.P., of Fredville, in the County of Kent; John Hardy, Esq., 3, Portland Place, in the County of Middlesex; the Rev. Thomas Bartlett, M.A., Rector of Kingston, Kent; and Alexander Gordon, Esq., 37, Old Broad Street, London.  Architects: Messrs. Scott and Moffat.  Builders: Messrs. John and Parker Ayers, Dover.'  The building of the Church occupied ten months, the consecration by the Archbishop of Canterbury (Dr. Howley), taking place on the 13th of June, 1844.(J.B.J. 1907)

The building of Christ Church transformed a large amount of agricultural land into building sites, to the delight of speculative builders, giving enhanced value to property that had been dormant since the Folkestone Road was opened in 1762.

"There was a King's highway in this direction much earlier, mention being made in a Dover deed, dated 1274, of 'The King's highway which leads from Dover Priory as far as Stapingdune.'  From this it appears that the ancient road, in this direction, went no further westward than the Elms corner, and then, passing the foot of Steppingdown, proceeded along the Elms Valley to Hougham.  But the property mentioned in this deed was mere agricultural land, and it does not appear that there were, at that early date, any human habitations westward of the Priory, with the exception of the Manor House of theLord of Maxton, and the Prior's Manor House at Farthingloe."