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Highlights. Eden Valley Kent

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 1. Chartwell

Sir Winston Churchill loved Chartwell as the place where he could escape the pressures of his public and political life to be with his family. The National Trust property is kept very much as it was in his day and the gardens command breathtaking views over the Weald of Kent.

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 2. Grave of Octavia Hill, Crockham Hill

National Trust co-founder, Octavia Hill, is buried with her sister Miranda, and friend Harriot Yorke, in one grave, beneath a yew tree on the south side of Crockham Hill’s Holy Trinity churchyard, near the car park. Elijah Hall designed her tombstone, and inside the church, her marble effigy is found next to the altar.

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 3. St Paul’s Church, Four Elms

The church was consecrated in 1881 but was built in a 13th century style. The rose window features the emblem of St John the Baptist, a lamb with a flag, and there are some fine furnishings in the Arts and Crafts tradition.

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 4. Parish Church of St Peter and St Paul, Edenbridge

The Norman church features a large Burne-Jones stained glass window in the Martyn Chapel.

Arts and Crafts movement architect, Mackay Hugh Baillie Scott (1864-1945) is buried in the old cemetery, beside the Church Street boundary wall – his memorial is an obelisk, topped with a small metal cross.

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 5. Eden Valley Museum, Edenbridge

Doggetts Farmhouse, now the Eden Valley Museum, is one of the oldest buildings in Edenbridge built soon after 1380, some 30 years after the Black Death ravaged England. The museum tells the story of the life and times of the Eden Valley, with touch screen technology and hands-on exhibits.

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 6. Hever Castle

This romantic 13th century castle was once the childhood home of Anne Boleyn, second wife of Henry VIII, and later became the home of Anne of Cleves – Henry VIII’s fourth wife. It contains beautiful furniture, tapestries and objects d’art, and outside has award winning gardens.

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 7. Bullen Chapel, Hever

The main feature of the Bullen Chapel in St Peter’s Church is the tomb of Sir Thomas Bullen (died 1538), father of Anne Bullen (Boleyn), the second wife of King Henry VIII, and grandfather of Queen Elizabeth I. On his tomb is a fine example of a monumental brass.

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 8. Chiding Stone, Chiddingstone

The Chiding Stone, a large boulder of Ardingly sandstone, can be reached by footpath from the village and is one of the alleged origins of the village’s name. Amongst the myths surrounding the stone, it is said that a wayward village wife was taken there for a public scolding, and that it was used by the preacher to guide his followers in the days before the church existed.

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 9. Leicester Square, Penshurst

This very pretty square is at the entrance to the church. The original Leicester Square dated to the 15th century, with later additions by George Devey. Many examples by this famous 19th century architect can be seen throughout the village. Leicester Square, London, was the London address for the Sidney family until the 18th century.

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 10. Penshurst Place & Gardens

Although medieval in origin, Penshurst Place retains the warmth and character of a family home, and remains the best-preserved example of a defended manor house in England. The formal garden shelters behind mellow Tudor brick and is a rare surviving example of Elizabethan design.

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 11. Forge Stores and Post Office, Penshurst

A feature of the village is the village stores, which was once a blacksmith’s and has a very unusual horseshoe-shaped oak timber ramed doorway.

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 12. Old School, Markbeech

To celebrate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee 1837-1897, a memorial stone was erected on the Old School, situated opposite the Kentish Horse pub in the centre of the village.

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Eden Valley Villages Trail

The best way to experience all the heritage and history of the sites listed above is by following the Eden Valley Villages Trail. This 33 mile drive explores sleepy villages, packed with history and heritage all set in some stunning countryside

33 miles Full Day Click here to download (PDF 2.2MB)

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