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Photographer's Note

Fairfield Church stands isolated and abandoned in Romney Marsh. The village that it once served disappeared many years ago leaving only the church and scattered farmhouses. It is dedicated to Saint Thomas a Becket, whereby hangs a tale.

Legend has it that it was founded by either an unnamed medieval traveller or the Archbishop of Canterbury who fell into a deep dike. Sinking in the water, he prayed to Thomas a Becket to save him as he came up for the first time, promised the saint he would build him a church as he surfaced for the second and was rescued by a farmer on the third. In return for his life, the church was built.

Fairfield, or its old English name of Fayrefelde, was once a village with documentary evidence in the form of maps from 1595 showing its presence. Now all that remains is the isolated church. The current church was a reconstruction (using original timbers) in 1912. Services are no longer held there but the church is maintained by the Romney Marsh Historic Churches Trust. Being built on marshland, the churchyard has no boundary, no tombstones, no trees and no memorials.

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Additional Photos by Stephen Nunney (snunney) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 10649 W: 63 N: 29870] (130965)
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