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Author Topic: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester  (Read 13853 times)

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kevin payne

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #26 on: July 22, 2010, 19:44:57 »
thanks for putting that info on here lyn,once i know how to do it,i'll place a photo of a stained glass window  of saint william on here that the wisdom hospice staff aloud me to take.

Offline Lyn L

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #25 on: July 17, 2010, 22:09:56 »
Courtesy of Kevin Payne who loaned me a copy of St William of Perth. His Story. From Rochester Cathedral.


William of Perth was a pilgrim who was given food and shelter by the monks before making his way onwards. Instead of taking the road that went eastwards by what is now Orange Terrace and then onward by Old Chatham Road to Chatham Hill, our pilgrim bore southward passing the old manor house of Delce Magna and it's old steading, into the old trackway for long called Dark Alley and now St Williams Way. He had not gone far, only to where the boundary wall of St Williams Hospital begins when by blow or a stab,he fell to the ground and someone dragged his murdered body up the bank, hid it in undergrowth and his earthly pilgrimage was ended.
A Chantry Chapel was erected on the spot where his murdered body was found and a cross was erected nearby. Later the field was known as Chapel Field and the fever hospital built on this field not inappropriately called St Williams Hospital.

The present writer has interviewed several Rochester citizens who as boys played around and within the ruined walls of this little Chapel. Their memories didn't agree, but the majority thought it was a little further northward of the fragments of the Chapel flintwork, which had been inserted in the west boundary of St Williams Hospital  and which were damaged recently by enemy action . It is perplexing to know why in recent days,( a relic so interesting to Rochesters historic past ) as the ruined walls of this 13th Century Chapel- closed at the Reformation- was ruthlessly destroyed. The large cross was also destroyed.


This must have been written sometime in the 1940s by Sydney W Wheatley  FSA, Hon Canon and Asst Librarian of Rochester Cathedral as it refers to recent enemy action.

Not a lot has changed then has it, if they were destroying historic buildings then. Apparently when the Hospice was built in the early 80s , workmen were finding old coins etc but where anything went is a mystery. So we may never know quite where the Chapel was, Kevins scrutinizing does make it look as if it could have been where he suggests.
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Offline Lyn L

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #24 on: July 17, 2010, 13:21:45 »
Not a 'sossidge' of remains sadly, will try and get a pic, thought it must have long gone, even before the steps were put in place for the Hospice it was only a grassy bank and we've lived over the road from it for over 30yrs. Got the pics of when it was just St Williams Hospital, but they only show it just before and during demolition.
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Offline kyn

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #23 on: July 17, 2010, 00:41:05 »
Thanks for the addition, I hope some remains can still be found but it is not looking hopeful!

kevin payne

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #22 on: July 16, 2010, 18:46:07 »
hi lyn and others,i was born opposite the hospital so ive always been intrigued with the legend of st.william,many years ago at rochester reference library i saw an old map with a sign for williams shrine,and after much scrutinizing worked out that by the map,the shrine once stood around where the steps are that lead up to the wisdom hospice,i also heard several accounts of workmen finding medieval coins around that same area when building the hospice,regards,kevin.

Offline kyn

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #21 on: May 13, 2010, 21:30:53 »
 :)  It must be marked on a map somewhere, surely!?  Thanks for looking Lyn L!

Offline Lyn L

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #20 on: May 13, 2010, 21:14:16 »
Nope, got that one wrong, it's a trigonometrical station sadly. Apologies. :)
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Offline Lyn L

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #19 on: May 13, 2010, 21:00:33 »
Well I don't know how to add the map, but here's one that COULD be the shrine. Dated 1869

http://www.british-history.ac.uk/mapsheet.aspx?compid=55124&sheetid=4221&ox=2745&oy=2516&zm=1&czm=1&x=322&y=382

There's a small triangle almost middle of map  , is THAT the shrine ?
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Offline Lyn L

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #18 on: May 09, 2010, 14:06:29 »
Thanks numanfan, now I know what the other hospital was, I guessed it was in that area, probably went about the 40s ? then because of the house on the corner there now and it's style.
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Offline numanfan

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #17 on: May 08, 2010, 23:15:20 »
The other hospital on the map was a Small Pox Hospital. Erected in 1902, it was connected with, and about half a mile from, St. Williams Hospital for infectious diseases. Situated on the corner of City Way & Arethusa Road.

Info from the 1937 Kellys Directory.
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Offline Lyn L

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #16 on: May 08, 2010, 19:44:26 »
Spoke to my pal who used to work at the hospital and she said there was nothing at all in the grounds apart from a couple of buildings ( mortuary etc )  that were built at the same time as the hospital itself. She has some pics that she will lend me, but is off on holiday so they will have to wait until she gets back, she has no memory of there being another hospital further up City Way either and lived close to where its shown on the map ( in her late 70s now )
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Offline Lyn L

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #15 on: May 08, 2010, 17:13:04 »
Mmm! interesting, what's that other hospital up towards the top of City Way then just before the greyhound track ?? Don't know that one at all, it looks as though it was where Warren Wood girls school used to be. But just had a thought, I know someone who worked at the hospital for years before it was demolished, I'll ask her if there was any sign in the grounds of a chapel, you never know.
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Chatham_Girl85

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #14 on: May 08, 2010, 15:51:45 »
it has got burial chambers (sites of) could it be in this vicinity?

Offline kyn

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #13 on: May 08, 2010, 14:42:05 »
Get rambeling  :)

Here is another WWII era map, it shows Horsted Farm but still no chapel...

Offline Riding With The Angels

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Re: Shrine to Saint William, Rochester
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2010, 20:29:50 »
I feel a ramble coming on!

 

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