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Sunday, December 11, 2016
Wall collapses at historic friary
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¬†A wall next to the 15th gatehouse at Aylesford Friary in Kent has collapsed. Engineers and architects last night expressed concern that the gatehouse could be in even greater danger of falling down than they had previously feared. In January, the Carmelite community at Aylesford launched a £1million restoration appeal, after they were warned that repair and restoration work was urgently needed on two of their ancient buildings. A spokeswoman for Aylesford said: "It looks as though we are going to have to try to protect the gatehouse by putting a scaffold tower round it, to shore it up." Constructed in the late 15th century, the gatehouse was the original ceremonial entrance to Aylesford. Sir John Sedley, who owned the Priory buildings from 1570 to 1605, developed and embellished it in the late 16th century. It is now home to Donum Dei, a small community of women who are affiliated to the Carmelite Order and are committed to helping the friars in their work of welcoming pilgrims and visitors. The Donum Dei Community also have a caring outreach to young people in the area and hold meetings in the gatehouse. If you would like to support the appeal write to Restoration 2000, The Friars, Aylesford, Kent ME20 7BX. For more details visit their website at: http://www.carmelite.org/aylesford/index.htm
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