St John the Baptist Church, Penshurst

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A new start – a new Benefice and a new Rector 

The church of St John the Baptist has stood  in the corner of Penshurst Place’s parkland since at least 1170. From 1st April 2021 we start a new chapter in this church’s life, at the geographical heart of a new grouping (or ‘benefice’) of churches called the benefice of Penshurst, Fordcombe and the Chiddingstone Churches.

This is exciting because it means that we can start to recruit our new Rector, who will take charge of this area, with the help of our associate priest, Revd. William McDougall,  lay reader Sally Musson and a large team of volunteers. The new Rector will live in Penshurst rectory, beside the church, at the heart of the village.

Advertisements for the new post will be appearing throughout April 2021 in The Church Times and its website and on Pathways. We look forward to welcoming visits by all candidates. Do read our full Benefice profile (or recruitment brochure) by following this link:


Benefice_Profile-FINAL 110321


Recovering from the effects of the Coronavirus and the lockdown

We have lost several members of the village during the pandemic and remember them fondly.  The death of Margot Downer, a member of our choir, was expressly linked to the virus. We think of them all as the life of the church resumes. We have been holding said services of Communion throughout February and March and now look to the resumption of limited singing, by our choir only, as from Easter Sunday.  The congregation can sing – do come and join us!

The virus has struck a serious hole in our finances. We have lost about one third of the church’s income over the last year – from lost collections, cancelled fund-raising events, postponed weddings and lost donations from tourists.

We need your help, please

We understand that many people’s finances are stretched at the moment. But if you can help the church’s reserves to recover from these losses, we would really appreciate an on-line donation. You can make a donation by:

  • using the DONATE button above
  • phoning 0333 123 1243 (press option 1 and be ready to quote the church’s ID: 108617101
  • making a bank transfer – our  account details are: CAF Bank, Sort code 40-52-40, Account no. 00008550. 


Thank you.

© Penshurt Church 2021. All rights reserved.