Rank hath its privileges in the Tilbury Fort Chapel

Even in a Georgian Fortress, religion had its place and Tilbury has a rather modest chapel near the front gate. There is barely any ornate decoration but the simple decor and large stylised windows being the altar and along one side make a big impact.

One thing that I found interesting though is the pews that the congregation sat on, in this cases soldiers.

As you can see from the photo above, all the pews including some off camera to the right are all uniform in appearance except for the rear most.

It’s not unusual for some pews to be more richly decorated or even with a door, they were generally reserved for a rich family or perhaps patron of the church Generally however, they aren’t right at the back of the church but midway or on one side.

After all, what is the point in having a high status if you have the worst view and can’t hear what is being said in the sermon?

As you can see there is a very small fireplace at the back of the chapel which would be in no way sufficient to warm the room up but would just take the chill off the air for those sitting right at the back, the officers!

Rank hath its privileges but what about everyone being equal in the eyes of God?!

About Stephen Liddell

I am a writer and traveller with a penchant for history and getting off the beaten track. With several books to my name including several #1 sellers. I also write environmental, travel and history articles for magazines as well as freelance work. I run my private tours company with one tour stated by the leading travel website as being with the #1 authentic London Experience. Recently I've appeared on BBC Radio and Bloomberg TV and am waiting on the filming of a ghost story on British TV. I run my own private UK tours company (Ye Olde England Tours) with small, private and totally customisable guided tours run by myself!
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