The Churchyard Cross built in 1897

This year’s Town Sunday Service will be held in the Parish Church of St Mary and St Eanswythe on Sunday 2 July at 10:30am.

From 1313 the inhabitants of Folkestone, summoned by the blowing of a horn, assembled annually at the Churchyard Cross in the Church grounds to elect their Mayor. After the Reformation and up until the end of the 19th Century, all that remained of the Churchyard Cross was its plinth and steps but the custom of the election continued.

In 1897, Canon Matthew Woodward, amid considerable controversy, had the present cross built using the ancient site. Although the Town Mayor is now elected in the comfort of the Town Hall, it is from the Churchyard Cross, prior to the Service in Church, that the Town Mayor is named and prayers said for the person honoured and elected by the Town Councillors for the Town of Folkestone.

Plaque on Churchyard Cross

The Town Mayor, Councillor Belinda Walker, will attend and be accompanied by the Town Councillors of Folkestone and other civic dignitaries.

It is hoped to make the occasion as fully representative of Folkestone’s life and community as possible and Townspeople, clubs, societies and organisations are invited to be represented.

By Ed

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