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History of Appledore

Appledore comes from the Old English ‘apuldor’ meaning ‘apple-tree’. The Domesday Book records Appledore as Apuldor.

The Normans built the Appledore church, dedicated to Saint Peter and Saint Paul in the 13th century. However, apart from the tower and north chapel, they completely rebuilt it in 1380, following a French invasion. In 1440, William Chamberlain cast and hung a bell. Around 1600, an unknown founder, cast the Sanctus bell. Twenty years later Joseph Hatch cast a tenor, and in 1685, John Hodson added four bells to complete the ring of six. The Victorians carried out a major restoration in the 19th century. In 1900, John Warner recast five of the bells into an octave, with the 1440 bell hung as the clock bell. In 1925, the church received a sympathetic refurbishment.

Appledore first came to prominence in 892, when 250 Viking ships landed and set up camp as part of a greater invasion plan. Alfred the Great managed to out manoeuvre and finally see them off. Early in the 14th century, Edward II granted permission for the town to hold a market. Appledore was a busy port on the Rother Estuary when a series of storms, in the 1300's, diverted it. Silting resulted in the village being 8 miles inland.

Appledore railway station opened on the South Eastern Railway’s Ashford to Hastings line on, 13 February 1851…. more

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