Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

This site is entirely user-supported. See how you can help.

Chapel, Maplescombe

A Scheduled Monument in West Kingsdown, Kent

We don't have any photos of this monument yet. Why don't you be the first to send us one?

Upload Photo »

Approximate Location Map
Large Map »

If Google Street View is available, the image is from the best available vantage point looking, if possible, towards the location of the monument. Where it is not available, the satellite view is shown instead.


Latitude: 51.3514 / 51°21'4"N

Longitude: 0.2419 / 0°14'30"E

OS Eastings: 556211.593426

OS Northings: 163751.05623

OS Grid: TQ562637

Mapcode National: GBR VP.RN4

Mapcode Global: VHHPF.49QD

Entry Name: Chapel, Maplescombe

Scheduled Date: 12 December 1979

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1005134

English Heritage Legacy ID: KE 362

County: Kent

Civil Parish: West Kingsdown

Built-Up Area: West Kingsdown

Traditional County: Kent

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Kent

Church of England Parish: Kingsdown St Edmund King and Martyr

Church of England Diocese: Rochester


Maplescombe Chapel, 164m SSW of Maplebank Farmhouse.

Source: Historic England


This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 30 July 2014. The record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.

The monument includes a medieval parish church, known as Maplescombe Chapel, surviving as upstanding and buried remains. It is situated on an east-facing slope near the bottom of a steep-sided valley at West Kingsdown on the North Downs.

The church has a rectangular nave and an apsidal east end. The walls are built of rough undressed flints, are about 1m thick and stand to approximately 3m high at the west end. Elsewhere they survive as low foundations. There are traces of a doorway at the west end of the north wall. Inhumation burials were found in the vicinity of the church in 1913 and 1978 and are likely to be associated with an attached burial ground.

Maplescombe Chapel is thought to have been built in about the 11th century. The dedication of the church is not known. It served as the parish church of Maplescombe, perhaps until the parish was united with Kingsdown in 1638. The church was ruinous by 1768. According to Edward Hasted’s ‘History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent’ of 1797 it originally had round-headed window openings. The church is recorded, together with the site of an attached cemetery, on OS Maps (1:2500) of 1885, 1896, 1909 and 1939.

The standing remains are Grade II listed.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

A parish church is a building, usually of roughly rectangular outline and containing a range of furnishings and fittings appropriate to its use for Christian worship by a secular community, whose members gather in it on Sundays and on the occasion of religious festivals. Children are initiated into the Christian religion at the church's font and the dead are buried in its churchyard. Parish churches were designed for congregational worship and are generally divided into two main parts: the nave, which provides accommodation for the laity, and the chancel, which is the main domain of the priest and contains the principal altar. Either or both parts are sometimes provided with aisles, giving additional accommodation or spaces for additional altars. Most parish churches also possess towers, generally at the west end, but central towers at the crossing of nave and chancel are not uncommon and some churches have a free-standing or irregularly sited tower. Many parish churches also possess transepts at the crossing of chancel and nave, and south or north porches are also common. The main periods of parish church foundation were in the 10th to 11th and 19th centuries. Most medieval churches were rebuilt and modified on a number of occasions and hence the visible fabric of the church will be of several different dates, with in some cases little fabric of the first church being still easily visible.

Maplescombe Chapel survives relatively well with upstanding medieval walls and footings, which allow the original ground plan to be traced. The chapel has not been excavated and retains potential for archaeological investigation. The site will contain archaeological information and environmental evidence relating to the construction, use and history of the church, and the landscape in which it was constructed.

Source: Historic England


'Parishes: Kingsdown', The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent, Vol 2 (1797), 475-493, accessed from Chapel

Source: Historic England

Other nearby scheduled monuments is an independent online resource and is not associated with any government department. All government data published here is used under licence. Please do not contact for any queries related to any individual ancient or schedued monument, planning permission related to scheduled monuments or the scheduling process itself. is a Good Stuff website.