A letter in the Archives of All Saints’ Church Birchington, records that in 1924 the then Arch-deacon of Canterbury, Dr. Randall Davidson, accepted as a Gift on behalf of the Diocese from Mrs. Haidee Ida Kearns, in memory of her late husband Colonel Thomas J. Kearns, C.B., C.M.G., the site upon which St.Thomas’s Church has been erected.
The building, which was started in 1932, was in the hands of Messrs. Rice & Son of Margate.
The total cost was to be £2,896.14.2. The initiative for the building of a Church at Minnis Bay, and the laying of the foundation stone by the Masons came from Lt.Col. George Ingleton Phillips, C.B.E., the founder member of the Brothers of Birchington Lodge of Freemasons.
The foundation stone was laid with full Masonic Pageantry on 29th October 1932, by Lord Corn-wallis, O.B.E., deputy Grand Master of England.
This ceremony was unique in as much as a Moslem took an active part in the Stone Laying ceremony. He was Worshipful Brother Colonel Nawab Malik Sir. Umar Hayat Tiwana, K.C.I.E., C.B.E., M.V.O., who was the A.D.C. to His Majesty the King and lived in Spencer Road when not on duty in London.
By the wish of the donor (Mrs. Kearns), the Church was named St. Thomas’s after her late husband, Thomas Kearns. Under the foundation stone were laid two Phials, one containing coins of the realm and the other the following:- A copy of the day’s ceremony; a poster announcing the ceremony; a copy of the Birchington Parish Magazine for October 1932; a copy of ‘The Times’ of 27th October 1932; a copy of ‘The News Chronicle’ of 27th October 1932; and a copy of ‘The Isle of Thanet Gazette’ of 28th October 1932.