Merrow Church

The NEWLANDS LINE, at 132 degrees (refined to 132.82)  is 100 degrees from the Crooksbury Line, and again starts from Whitmoor Barrow.  At 4 Druid Miles (DM) it passes through St John’s Church at Merrow and carries on to Newlands Corner Barrow at 6 DM.  Unfortunately the 2 DM point is on the pavement in a housing estate. These distances are precise and have been found to occur on other alignments and have therefore been used as the decided criterion of the Druid Mile.  In Weston Wood the line brushes the side of the reported position of a disputed barrow, now completely destroyed by sand extraction, and then passes through the site of a Mesolithic settlement.  At 9 DM passes close by Shere Heath Barrow but not close enough to be taken as an alignment point.

132_4 Merrow Church 

132_4 Merrrow Church

 

Note that multiples of the Druid Mile occur on both alignments.

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The best view of the church is from the south

The Church of St John the Evangelist.  Norman fragments but largely a Victorian rebuild.  It was in a ruinous state in the 1840’s and was rebuilt between 1842 and 1843.  Merrow was called Marewe in 1185 and no interpretation has ever been satisfactorily put on this name, it may refer to the marrow of the land being the best land for cultivation.  The church stands at the junction of the Guildford to Leatherhead road on the north side and Trodds Lane outside the wall to the west.  Trodds Lane roughly links the church to the next point on the line, Newlands Corner Barrow.

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The church from the north east

The church appears to stand on ground some 1.5-2.0 metres higher than its surroundings as can be seen from the above photograph looking uphill.  The original norman church would seem to be from the left hand facade extending back to the tower. The 4 DM point on the Newlands Line lies on a tarmac surface just in front of and right of the most right hand east facing window, whereas the 7DM point on the Waverley Line is well within the body of the church.

 

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Pilgrim crosses on a norman pillar

The church is very victorian in appearance, both externally and internally, the only interest being the norman north doorway (moved forward upon construction of the north aisle in 1881) and the norman pillars to the south side of the nave.  One of these pillars bears two carved pilgrim crosses possibly originating from the time of the pilgrimages to Canterbury.

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