“The World, according to the best geographers, is divided into Europe, Asia, Africa, America, and Romney Marsh.”

St Augustine, Snave

St Augustine Sanve
St Augustine Church

St Augustine at Snave, one of the smallest churches on the Marsh, was originally built in the 13th century and restored in 1873. Redundant since 1883, the church was originally Catholic but stopped holding Latin Masses when it turned Protestant at the time of the Reformation in the 16th century. In 2015 it held its first Latin Mass since that time and there are plans to repeat the Mass in 2016.

The church stands on the south side of Snave green, or lees, along which there are several straggling houses.

The tower, containing three bells, is square with large squat buttresses, with its upper part built in the 15th century and has plain square -headed belfry windows. At its north east corner there is a timber access turret, capped with a simple 19th century weather vane topped with a ball.

Continuing round the outside to the north, the nave has two-light windows of 13th century date, with the outline of a blocked North doorway between them, blocked in brick, probably in the 18th century. Projecting on the north side is the eastern Chapel, heavily buttressed, with windows also of two-lights. The east wall of the chancel has a three-light window.

The south side of the church, again heavily buttressed, has the same two-light windows and between those of the nave is a porch, substantially of Victorian date. For many years in a state of ruin, it was rebuilt in 1989. There are several fine old stones to be seen in the Churchyard.
 

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Inside St Augustine
Inside St Augustine

The very fine Royal Arms of 1735 have recently been restored. These early coats of arms are characterised by active looking lion and unicorn supporters. The Chancel has been very heavily restored and it is impossible to tell whether in its present form the Chancel Arch retains any of the features of its 12th or 13th century predecessor. The chancel and the north chapel are most probably late 13th century work.

On the north wall is a memorial to one of Romney Marsh's most famous sons, Major Max Teichman Derville, Lord of the Manor of Snave, O.B.E., Deputy Lieutenant, Justice of the Peace for the County of Kent and High Sheriff 1938-39. He was also a County Councillor for, and Bailiff of, Romney Marsh, and a Baron of the Cinque Ports.

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