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Tony Grist

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Old St Helen's, Ore [Jan. 30th, 2019|09:03 am]
Tony Grist

Old St Helen's church, Ore and the Castle are the oldest extant buildings in Hastings. Our Victorian ancestors took the roof off St Helen's and removed much of the stone and built themselves a nice, cosy Victorian church higher up the hill- the bastards! St Helen's was founded by King Offa of Mercia- the man with the dyke- after he'd defeated the Hastingiae in 771. The existing fabric is Norman and most periods thereafter. Archaeologists dug the site and found a Saxon coin, some rather nice medieval tiles and a lot of dead people.

I turned up to find another photographer already in possession. He was a professional. He had a tripod. I waved my dinky digital camera at him and claimed kinship. Anyway, we had a nice chat. He said he does churches and suchlike for fun- and makes a living "photographing drunks"- ie high profile weddings and 21st birthdays- which is also fun. "Celebrities in bunny ears," he reminisced. We shared an enthusiasm for gravestones- about which I discovered I knew more than he.

[User Picture]From: pondhopper
2019-01-30 02:46 pm (UTC)

So this photo is of the old church? The tower looks well-kept.
I very much enjoy your knowkedge of tombs and tombstones when you post about them.

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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2019-01-30 03:48 pm (UTC)
Yes, this is the old church. It's well cared for. The tower can be climbed- but only if you have the key to the door that opens on the stair well.

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[User Picture]From: puddleshark
2019-01-30 03:22 pm (UTC)
Oh, those wicked Victorians...

It's a gorgeous ruin, though.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2019-01-30 03:50 pm (UTC)
I'll say this for the Victorian, they left most of the old fabric intact. The only part they completely demolished was a south aisle that had been added earlier in the 19th century.
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[User Picture]From: heleninwales
2019-01-31 05:48 pm (UTC)
Your "dinky digital camera" does an excellent job. :)

How thoughtless of the Victorians to destroy such a historic church. How typical.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2019-01-31 06:16 pm (UTC)

The Victorians loved medieval architecture- but treated it carelessly.
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