St Andrew's Church, Buckland

 

St Andrew's Buckland 1889-97 Interior

 

St Andrew's Buckland 1889-97 Interior

  

 

The picture, from an original glass plate negative, dates from between 1887 when the font was installed, and 1897 when the wooden screen (in use from 1851) was replaced by an ironwork one. The pulpit is shown one bay east of its modern-day position.

 

 

 

                              St Andrew's, Buckland, before extension was built.  Photographer not known.


                   St Andrew's, Buckland, before extension was built.

                                       Photographer not known.

 

        

 

        View of St Andrew's Church, Buckland, from the railway embankment,
      looking towards the Buckland Paper Mill, showing the clock tower, c.1937 
      (Bob Hollingsbee collection)

 

             

     St Andrew's, Buckland, unused postcard showing lychgate circa 1905 vintage.  
   Fine printing and colour but publisher unknown, although believed to be British.

 

          

 

Moving the Buckland Yew Tree - photograph taken  Friday 5 March 1880
(it is thought that the contractor, Mr William Barron, is pictured towards right of centre in a top hat, with left arm holding rolled-up umbrella and right foot standing on one of the lower wooden supports)
The following account is taken from "Buckland-in-Dover 1852-1952" published in 1952 by the Buckland Press:
     "The Vicar and Churchwardens think it only right that the parishioners should know what it is proposed to do with regard to the Old Yew, now that the Faculty has been granted for the Enlargement of the Church.  It was most desirable, of course that if it were in any way possible, the Yew should be preserved.  Accordingly they consulted one or two experienced gardeners and, eventually they heard of a man who had had great experience in the transplanting of large trees, and a few weeks ago they requested this gentleman to come down and look at the Yew Tree and its surroundings.  He came and unhesitatingly gave it as his opinion that the tree could be transplanted and that it would continue to live and flourish.  He was then asked to fix the best time for carrying out so delicate an operation and he has arranged to come during February.  It will be necessary in some way to limit the number of spectators who may be expected to flock to the churchyard to see such a wonderful sight, and accordingly it is decided to close the churchyard during the preliminary operations and, when all is ready for the removal, to admit the public by Tickets for which 2/6 each will be charged.  The proceeds, if any, will go towards the very heavy expense of transplanting the tree.
     "This great undertaking excited such universal and such natural interest that it may be worth while to place on record some few facts in connection with the removal.  Sceptics and doubters are so numerous, that in a few years' time, many may be found who will doubt that such a tree was ever moved in the memory of man.
     "The work was taken in hand by Mr William Barron of the firm of Barron and Son of Borrowash near Derby.  Mr Barron has moved many old yew trees, one of which was proved to be 600 years old.  He said, however, that this tree was "a chicken to the Buckland Yew"  which is more than 1,000 years old.  An opinion seems to prevail that the tree is mentioned in Domesday Book but this has not been verified.  The tree was measured and it was found that the whole diameter of the branches is 48 feet.
     "The operations commenced on Tuesday February 24th 1880, when a trench was dug on all sides four feet wide and leaving a large block of earth 18 feet long by 16 feet broad.  The trench was made 5 feet deep and a long cutting was formed from the old position to the new one, gradually rising to within one foot of the surface.  The large block of earth was then tightly bound on all four sides with planks of timber held together with chains, straw being inserted between the timber and the earth for the purpose of holding the soil together.   Wise prophets foretold the discovery of huge roots extending as far as the Chancel of the Church or of an enormous tap root going down 20 or 30 feet into the ground but there were no roots of any size extending beyond or below the block of earth which had been carved out.  As soon as the earth was bound together round the roots, the men began tunnelling under the tree making four "drifts" from back to front, and into these drifts were placed four huge blocks or baulks of timber beneath which were some battens, and, between the battens, and the baulks some six-inch rollers were placed.  When these were secure, the earth was all cut away between the baulks of timber, and the whole mass estimated to weigh 55 tons was then resting upon the baulks on the rollers.  The horizontal bough was propped up upon some heavy timbers placed on a timber dray.  Above the place where the tree was to stand were placed three windlasses or crabs such as are used for drawing up the bathing machines on the shore, and from these crabs chains and blocks were fastened to a plank bolted onto to the front of the baulks under the tree.  When all was ready and the word was given to go, chain after chain snapped like tow, until at last, some stronger tackle was procured and then, on Wednesday,3rd March, at about 5pm, the tree began to move when darkness set in and the work had to be suspended.  Slowly, the next day, with a motion almost imperceptible, the huge mass travelled forward with many a stoppage and many a hitch, but before dusk, it had arrived within about a yard of its destination."This yard was soon accomplished on the morning of Friday 5th March, at about 9.30am.  Before the work of unpacking began some excellent photographs were taken by Mr Buckman, in two or three positions, and then the tree was slowly allowed to settle down into position.  Turf was packed tightly in between the baulks, then, by means of powerful jacks, the baulks were raised and the rollers taken out.  Then the baulks were drawn out backwards and the holes in which they had been were packed in with turf and soil and the whole banked up as it now stands.
     "It must not be supposed that this great undertaking was accomplished as smoothly and without accident as the description would seem to imply.  One of the most serious difficulties which occurred was that just as everything was ready to start a rumbling sound was heard and a brick vault close against the trunk of the tree collapsed and, with it, a large portion of the block of earth on that side fell in.  This alone was enough to daunt most people, but Mr Barron was equal to the occasion, and in an hour or two he had constructed a support to the cracked and cracking sides.  Mr Barron is of the opinion that it was the digging of the vault, above one hundred years ago, which had caused the trunk of the tree to split in the manner of which we have always known it, as the builder had gone so close to the wood of the trunk as to cut asunder some very large roots, the wonder being that the whole tree had not fallen about his ears.
     "It had been thought by some that some valuable or curious relics would be found under the tree but this was not the case, the only curiosity being a small copper medal with a Maltese Cross on one side and a figture of the Blessed Virgin on the other, and, round the figure the words "Ave Maria" in letters of about the 14th century"
(Buckland Parish Magazine, March, 1880)"

 

      

 

                A letter-heading embossed:  "Buckland Vicarage, Dover"
                 showing photograph of the incumbent and his children
       handwritten: "tea on lawn June 28th 1902" and posted on "30 Oct 1902"