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Kent
Invicta Flag of Kent
Invicta
Motto of County Council: ''Invicta''
EnglandKent.png
Geography
Status Ceremonial and (smaller) Non-metropolitan county
Region South East England
Area
- Total
- Admin. council
- Admin. area
Ranked 10th
3,736 km2 (1,442 sq mi)
Ranked 10th
3,544 km2 (1,368 sq mi)
Admin HQ Maidstone
ISO 3166-2 GB-KEN
ONS code 29
NUTS 3 UKJ42
Demography
Population
- Total (2008 est.)
- Density
- Admin. council
- Admin. pop.
Ranked 7th
1,660,100
444 /km2 (1,150/sq mi)
Ranked 1st
1,406,600
Ethnicity 96.9% White
1.9% Asian
Politics
Arms-kent.jpg
"CANTIA"
Kent County Council
http://www.kent.gov.uk/
Medway Council
http://www.medway.gov.uk/
Executive Conservative
Members of Parliament
Districts
KentDistrictsNumbered.svg
  1. Sevenoaks
  2. Dartford
  3. Gravesham
  4. Tonbridge and Malling
  5. Medway (Unitary)
  6. Maidstone
  7. Tunbridge Wells
  8. Swale
  9. Ashford
  10. Canterbury
  11. Shepway
  12. Thanet
  13. Dover

Kent (pronounced /ˈkɛnt/), originally Cantia, is a county in southeast England, and is one of the home counties. It borders East Sussex, Surrey and Greater London and has a defined boundary with Essex in the middle of the River Thames estuary. The ceremonial county boundaries of Kent include the shire county of Kent and the unitary borough of Medway. Kent has a nominal border with France halfway through the Channel Tunnel. Maidstone is its county town and historically Rochester and Canterbury have been accorded city status, though only the latter still holds it.

Kent's location between London and the continent has led to its being in the front line of several conflicts, including the Battle of Britain during World War II. East Kent was named Hell Fire Corner during the conflict. England has relied on the county's ports to provide warships through much of the past 800 years; the Cinque Ports in the 12th–14th centuries and Chatham Dockyard in the 16th–20th centuries were of particular importance to the country's security. France can be seen clearly in fine weather from Folkestone, and the iconic White Cliffs of Dover.

Because of its abundance of orchards and hop gardens, Kent is widely known as "The Garden of England" – a name often applied when marketing the county or its produce, although other regions have tried to lay claim to the title.[1][2] Major industries in the north-west of Kent have included cement, papermaking, and aircraft construction, but these are now in decline. Large parts of Kent are within the London commuter belt. South and East Kent rely on tourism and agriculture. Coal mining has also played its part in Kent's industrial heritage.

Contents

History

The area has been occupied since the Palaeolithic era, as attested by finds from the quarries at Swanscombe. The Medway megaliths were built during the Neolithic era. There is a rich sequence of Bronze Age, Iron Age, and Roman era occupation, as indicated by finds and features such as the Ringlemere gold cup and the Roman villas of the Darent valley.[3]

The modern name of Kent is derived from the Brythonic word Cantus meaning "rim" or "border". This describes the eastern part of the current county area as a border land or coastal district. Julius Caesar had described the area as Cantium, or home of the Cantiaci in 51 BC.[4]

The extreme west of the modern county was occupied by Iron Age tribes, known as the Regnenses. It is possible that another ethnic group occupied what is now called The Weald and East Kent. East Kent became a kingdom of the Jutes during the 5th century[5] and was known as Cantia from about 730 and as Cent in 835. The early medieval inhabitants of the county were known as the Cantwara, or Kent people. These people regarded the city of Canterbury as their capital.[6]

In 597, Pope Gregory I appointed Augustine as the first Archbishop of Canterbury. In the previous year, Augustine successfully converted the pagan King Æthelberht of Kent to Christianity. The Diocese of Canterbury became Britain's first Episcopal See and has since remained Britain's centre of Christianity.[7]

In the 11th century, the people of Kent adopted the motto Invicta, meaning "undefeated". This naming followed the invasion of Britain by William of Normandy. The Kent people's continued resistance against the Normans led to Kent's designation as a semi-autonomous County Palatine in 1067. Under the nominal rule of William's half-brother Odo of Bayeux, the county was granted similar powers to those granted in the areas bordering Wales and Scotland.[8]

During the medieval and early modern period, Kent played a major role in several of England's most notable rebellions, including the Peasants' Revolt of 1381, led by Wat Tyler,[9] Jack Cade's Kent rebellion of 1450, and Wyatt's Rebellion of 1554 against Queen Mary I.[10]

Titlepage of William Lambard's "Perambulation of Kent", being a history of the county of Kent since William the Conqueror.

The Royal Navy first used the River Medway in 1547. By the reign of Elizabeth I (1558–1603) a small dockyard had been established at Chatham. By 1618, storehouses, a ropewalk, a drydock, and houses for officials had been built downstream from Chatham.[11]

By the 17th century, tensions between Britain and the powers of the Netherlands and France led to increasing military build-up in the county. Forts were built all along the coast following the raid on the Medway, a successful attack by the Dutch navy on the shipyards of the Medway towns in 1667.[12]

The 18th century was dominated by wars with France, during which the Medway became the primary base for a fleet that could act along the Dutch and French coasts. When the theatre of operation moved to the Atlantic, this role was assumed by Portsmouth and Plymouth, with Chatham concentrating on shipbuilding and ship repair. As an indication of the area's military importance, the first Ordnance Survey map ever drawn was a one-inch map of Kent, published in 1801.[13] Many of the Georgian naval buildings still stand.

In the early 1800s, smugglers were very active on the Kent coastline. Gangs such as The Aldington Gang brought spirits, tobacco and salt to the county, and transported goods such as wool across the sea to France.[14]

In 1889, the County of London was created and the townships of Deptford, Greenwich, Woolwich, Lee, Eltham, Charlton, Kidbrooke and Lewisham were transferred out of Kent and in 1900 the area of Penge was gained. Some of Kent, notably Dartford, is contiguous with Greater London.

During World War II, much of the Battle of Britain was fought in the skies over the county. Between June 1944 and March 1945, over 10,000 V1 flying bombs, known as "Doodlebugs", were fired on London from bases in Northern France. Many were destroyed by aircraft, anti-aircraft guns, and barrage balloons, yet both London and Kent were hit by around 2,500 of these bombs.

After the war, Kent's borders changed several more times. In 1965 the London boroughs of Bromley and Bexley were created from nine towns formerly in Kent.[15] In 1998, Rochester, Chatham, Gillingham, and Rainham left the administrative county of Kent to form the Unitary Authority of Medway. They have, however, remained in the ceremonial county of Kent.[16] During this reorganisation, through an administrative oversight, the city of Rochester lost its official city status.[17]

Climate

Kent is one of the warmest parts of Britain. On 10 August 2003, in the hamlet of Brogdale near Faversham a temperature of 38.5°C (101.3°F), the hottest temperature ever recorded in the United Kingdom.[18]

Physical geography

'The White Cliffs of Dover'

Kent is in the southeastern corner of England. It borders the River Thames and the North Sea to the north, and the Straits of Dover and the English Channel to the south. France is 34 kilometres (21 mi) across the Strait.[19]

The major geographical features of the county are determined by a series of ridges and valleys running east-west across the county. These are the results of weathering of the Wealden dome, a dome across Kent and Sussex created by Alpine movements 10–20 million years ago. This dome consists of an upper layer of chalk above successive layers of upper greensand, upper clay, lower greensand, lower clay, and red sandstone. The ridges and valleys formed when the exposed clay eroded faster than the exposed chalk, greensand, or red sandstone.

Geological map of southeast England, showing a concentric circular pattern formed by the weathering of the Wealden dome.

Sevenoaks, Maidstone, Ashford, and Folkestone are built on greensand,[20] while Tonbridge and Tunbridge Wells are built on red sandstone.[21] Dartford, Gravesend, the Medway towns, Sittingbourne, Faversham, Canterbury, Deal, and Dover are built on chalk.[20][21] The easterly section of the Wealden dome has been eroded away by the sea, and cliffs such as the white cliffs of Dover are present where a chalk ridge known as the North Downs meets the coast. Spanning Dover and Westerham is the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.[22]

The Wealden dome is a Mesozoic structure lying on a Palaeozoic foundation, which usually creates the right conditions for coal formation. This is found in East Kent roughly between Deal, Canterbury, and Dover. The coal measures within the Westphalian Sandstone are deep about 250 m – 400 m (800 – 1300 ft) and subject to flooding. They occur in two major troughs, which extend under the English Channel where similar coalfields are located.[23]

Seismic activity has occasionally been recorded in Kent, though the epicentres were offshore. In 1382 and 1580 there were two earthquakes exceeding 6.0 on the Richter Scale. In 1776, 1950, and on 28 April 2007 there were earthquakes of around 4.3. The 2007 earthquake caused physical damage in Folkestone.[24]

Geological cross section of Kent, showing how it relates to major towns

The coastline of Kent is continuously changing, due to tectonic uplift and coastal erosion. Until about 960, the Isle of Thanet was an island, separated by the Wantsum channel, formed around a deposit of chalk; over time, the channels silted up with alluvium. Similarly Romney Marsh and Dungeness have been formed by accumulation of alluvium.[21]

Kent's principal river, the River Medway, rises near East Grinstead in Sussex and flows eastwards to Maidstone. Here it turns north and breaks through the North Downs at Rochester, then joins the estuary of the River Thames as its final tributary near Sheerness. The Medway is some 112 kilometres (70 mi) long.[25][26] The river is tidal as far as Allington lock, but in earlier times, cargo-carrying vessels reached as far upstream as Tonbridge.[25] The Medway has captured the head waters of other rivers such as the River Darent. Other rivers of Kent include the River Stour in the east.

Demographics

Kent Compared
2001 UK census Kent South East England England
Total population 1,579,206 8,000,645 49,138,831
Foreign born 5.8% 8.1% 9.2%
White 96.5% 95.1% 90.9%
Asian 2.0% 2.7% 4.6%
Black 0.4% 0.7% 2.3%
Christian 74.6% 72.8% 72%
Muslim 0.6% 1.4% 3.1%
Sikh 0.7% 0.5% 0.7%

As of the 2001 UK census,[27] Kent, including Medway, had 1,579,206 residents and 646,308 households, of which 1,329,718 residents and 546,742 households were within the administrative boundaries. Of those households, 48.9% were married couples living together, 9.0% were co-habiting couples and 8.7% were lone parents; 28.0% of households consisted of individuals, 14.6% had someone of pensionable age living alone, and 30.4% included children aged under 16 or a person aged 16 to 18 who was in full-time education. For every 100 females, there were 93.9 males.

The ethnicity of Kent was 96.5% White, 0.9% mixed race, 0.3% Chinese, 1.7% other Asian and 0.4% Black. The place of birth for residents was 94.2% United Kingdom, 0.7% Republic of Ireland, 0.5% Germany, 0.9% other Western Europe countries, 0.3% Eastern Europe, 0.8% Africa, 0.6% Far East, 0.9% South Asia, 0.2% Middle East, 0.4% North America, 0.1% South America and 0.3% Oceania. Religion was recorded as 74.6% Christian, 0.7% Sikh, 0.6% Muslim, 0.4% Hindu, 0.2% Buddhist and 0.1% Jewish, while 15.2% were recorded as having no religion, 0.3% had an alternative religion, and 7.8% did not state their religion.

Government

Kent County Council (KCC) and its 12 district councils administer most of the county (3352 km²), while the Medway Towns Council, a unitary uthority and commonly called Medway Council, administers the more densely populated remainder (192 km²)[28]. Together they have around 300 town and parish councils. Kent County Council's headquarters are in Maidstone,[29] while Medway's offices are in Strood and Gillingham.

As of the 2009 county council elections, Kent County Council was controlled by the Conservatives, which won 74 of the Council's 84 seats, 7 were won by the Liberal Democrats and 2 by the Labour Party. As of the 2007 local elections, Medway Council was controlled by the Conservatives; 33 of the Council's 55 seats were held by the Conservatives, 13 by the Labour Party, 8 by the Liberal Democrats and 1 by an Independent.[30] Currently, all of Kent's district councils are controlled by the Conservatives; the only British county that is in this position.

At the national level, Kent is represented in Parliament by 17 MPs, 10 of whom are Conservative and 7 are Labour. Kent is in the European Parliament constituency of South East England, which elects ten members of the European Parliament.[31]

Economy

Converted oast at Frittenden.

As of the 2001 UK census,[27] employment statistics for the residents in Kent, including Medway, were as follows: 41.1% in full-time employment, 12.4% in part-time employment, 9.1% self-employed, 2.9% unemployed, 2.3% students with jobs, 3.7% students without jobs, 12.3% retired, 7.3% looking after home or family, 4.3% permanently sick or disabled, and 2.7% economically inactive for other reasons. Of residents aged 16–74, 16% had a higher education qualification or the equivalent, compared to 20% nationwide.[27]

The average hours worked per week by residents of Kent were 43.1 for males and 30.9 for females. Their industry of employment was 17.3% retail, 12.4% manufacturing, 11.8% real estate, 10.3% health and social work, 8.9% construction, 8.2% transport and communications, 7.9% education, 6.0% public administration and defence, 5.6% finance, 4.8% other community and personal service activities, 4.1% hotels and restaurants, 1.6% agriculture, 0.8% energy and water supply, 0.2% mining, and 0.1% private households. This is higher than the whole of England for construction and transport/communications, and lower for manufacturing.

Kent is sometimes known as the "Garden of England" for its abundance of orchards and hop gardens. Distinctive hop-drying buildings called oasts are common in the countryside, although many have been converted into dwellings. Nearer to London, market gardens also flourish.

However, in recent years, there has been a significant drop in agriculture, and industry and services are increasing their utilization of the area. This is illustrated by the following table of economic indicator gross value added (GVA) between 1995 and 2000 (figures are in millions of British Pounds Sterling).[32]

Year Regional GVA[A] Agriculture Industry[B] Services[C]
County of Kent (excluding Medway)
1995 12,369 379 3.1% 3,886 31.4% 8,104 65.5%
2000 15,259 259 1.7% 4,601 30.2% 10,399 68.1%
2003 18,126 287 1.6% 5,057 27.9% 12,783 70.5%
Medway
1995 1,823 21 3.1% 560 31.4% 1,243 68.2%
2000 2,348 8 1.7% 745 30.2% 1,595 67.9%
2003 2,671 10 1.6% 802 27.9% 1,859 69.6%
A Components may not sum to totals due to rounding
B includes energy and construction
C includes financial intermediation services indirectly measured

North Kent is heavily industrialised with cement-making at Northfleet and Cuxton, brickmaking at Sittingbourne, shipbuilding on the Medway and Swale, engineering and aircraft design and construction at Rochester, chemicals at Dartford and papermaking at Swanley, and oil refining at Grain.[15] A steel mini mill in Sheerness and a rolling mill in Queenborough.There are two nuclear power stations at Dungeness, although the older one, built in 1965, was closed at the end of 2006.[33]

Cement-making, papermaking, and coal-mining were important industries in Kent during the 19th and 20th century. Cement came to the fore in the 19th century when massive building projects were undertaken. The ready supply of chalk and huge pits between Stone and Gravesend bear testament to that industry. There were also other workings around Burham on the tidal Medway.[34]

Kent's original paper mills stood on streams like the River Darent, tributaries of the River Medway, and on the River Stour. Two 18th century mills were on the River Len and at Tovil on the River Loose. In the late 19th century huge modern mills were built at Dartford and Northfleet on the River Thames and at Kemsley on The Swale. In pre-industrial times, almost every village and town had its own windmill or watermill, with over 400 windmills known to have stood at some time. Twenty eight survive within the county today, plus two replica mills and a further two in that part of Kent now absorbed into London. All the major rivers in the county were used to power watermills.

From about 1900, several coal pits operated in East Kent. The Kent coalfield was mined during the 20th century at several collieries,[35] including Chislet, Tilmanstone, Betteshanger, and the Snowdown Colliery, which ran from 1908 to 1986.[36]

The west of the county (including Maidstone, Tunbridge Wells & Sevenoaks) is generally more affluent than the east, especially when compared to the coastal regions of Folkestone, Dover & Thanet. This is partly due to the former's proximity to London, making it prime "commuter belt" and the latter's geographic extremities. The eagerly awaited CTRL 2009 rail service, using the high speed Channel Tunnel line to bring coastal areas' travel times to London down to around an hour, is hoped to further regeneration.

Arts

Kent has provided inspiration for several notable writers and artists. Canterbury's religious role gave rise to Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, a key development in the English language. The father of novelist Charles Dickens worked at the Chatham Dockyard; in many of his books, the celebrated novelist featured the scenery of Chatham, Rochester, and the Cliffe marshes.[37] The landscape painter J. M. W. Turner spent part of his childhood in the town of Margate in East Kent, and regularly returned to visit it throughout his life. The East Kent coast inspired many of his works, including some of his most famous seascapes.[38] During the late 1930s, Nobel Prize-awarded novelist William Golding worked as a teacher at Maidstone Grammar School, where he met his future wife Ann Brookfield.[39]

Transport

Roads

The M2 and High Speed 1 crossing the Medway Valley, south of Rochester.

With the Roman invasion, a road network was constructed to connect London to the Channel ports of Dover, Lympne and Richborough. The London–Dover road was Watling Street. These roads are now approximately the A2, B2068, A257, and the A28. The A2 runs through Dartford (A207), Gravesend, Rochester, Canterbury and Dover; the A20 through Eltham, Wrotham, Maidstone, Charing, Ashford. Hythe, Folkestone and Dover; the A21 around Sevenoaks, Tonbridge, Tunbridge Wells and on to Hastings in East Sussex.[15] In the 1960s, two motorways were built; the M2 from Medway to Faversham, and the M20 from Swanley to Folkestone. Part of the M25 runs through Kent, from Westerham to the Kent and Essex tunnel at Dartford. The Dartford tunnel has been joined by the Queen Elizabeth II Bridge, together providing four lanes in each direction. The M26 motorway, built in 1980, provides a short link between the M25 at Sevenoaks and the M20 near Wrotham.

Water

The medieval Cinque Ports, except for Dover, have all now silted up. The Medway Estuary has been an important port and naval base for 500 years. The River Medway is tidal up to Allington and navigable up to Tonbridge. Kent's two canals are the Royal Military Canal between Hythe and Rye, which still exists, and the Thames and Medway Canal between Strood and Gravesend. Built in 1824, it was purchased in 1846 by the railways, which partially backfilled it.[15] Container ports are located at Ramsgate and Thamesport.

Railways

A Eurostar train at km 48 on HS1, the High Speed 1, near Strood

The earliest locomotive-driven passenger-carrying railway in Britain was the Canterbury and Whitstable Railway which opened in 1830.[40] This and the London and Greenwich Railway later merged into South Eastern Railway (SER).[41] By the 1850s, SER's networks had expanded to Ashford, Ramsgate, Canterbury, Tunbridge Wells, and the Medway towns. SER's major London termini were London Bridge, Charing Cross, and Cannon Street. Kent also had a second major railway, the London, Chatham and Dover Railway (LCDR). Originally the East Kent Railway in 1858, it linked the northeast Kent coast with London terminals at Victoria and Blackfriars.

The two companies merged in 1899, forming the South Eastern and Chatham Railway (SECR). In the aftermath of World War I, the government's Railways Act 1921 grouped railway companies together; the SECR joined neighbouring London, Brighton and South Coast Railway (LBSCR) and London and South Western Railway (LSWR) to form the Southern Railway.[41] Britain's railways were nationalised in 1948, forming British Rail. The railways were privatised in 1996 and most Kent passenger services were franchised to Connex South Eastern.[42] Following financial difficulties, Connex lost the franchise and was replaced by South Eastern Trains and after Southeastern.[43]

The Channel Tunnel was completed in 1994 and High Speed 1 in November 2007 with a London terminus at St Pancras. A new station, Ebbsfleet International, opened between Dartford and Gravesend, serving northern Kent.[44] The high speed lines will be utilised to provide a faster train service to coastal towns like Ramsgate and Folkestone. This station is in addition to the existing station at Ashford International, which has suffered a massive cut in service as a result.

Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway

In addition to the "mainline" railways, there are several light, heritage, and industrial railways in Kent. There are three heritage, standard gauge railways; Spa Valley Railway near Tunbridge Wells on the old Tunbridge Wells West branch, East Kent Railway on the old East Kent coalfield area and the Kent and East Sussex Railway on the Weald around Tenterden. In addition there is the 15-inch (380 mm) gauge, tourist-oriented Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway on the southeast Kent coast along the Dungeness peninsular. Finally, there is the 2 ft 6 in (0.76 m), industrial Sittingbourne & Kemsley Light Railway.

Air

A limited number of charter flights are provided by Kent's Kent International Airport at Manston, and London Ashford Airport at Lydd. However, most passengers across the South East use the larger Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted and Luton airports. In 2002, it was revealed that the government was considering building a new four-runway airport on the marshland near the village of Cliffe on the Hoo Peninsula.[45] This plan was dropped in 2003 following protests by cultural and environmental groups.[46]

Education

The county has three universities; Canterbury Christ Church University with campuses throughout East Kent, University of Kent, with campuses in Canterbury and Medway, and University of Greenwich (a London University), with sites at Woolwich, Eltham, London and Medway. The University of Creative Arts (UCA) also has three of its five campuses in the county.

Whereas much of the UK adopted a comprehensive education system in the 1970s, Kent County Council (KCC) and Medway Unitary Authority are among around fifteen[47] local authorities still providing wholly selective education through the eleven-plus high schools and grammar schools. Together, the two Kent authorities have 38 of the 164 grammar schools remaining in the UK.[48]

KCC has the largest education department of any local authority in the UK,[49] providing school places for over 289,000 pupils.

Schools in Kent (data from 2000)[50]
LEA Nursery Primary Secondary
(modern)
Secondary
(Grammar)
Special Pupil
Referral
Units
Independent City
Technology
College
Total
KCC 1 475 74 32 34 11 83 1 711
Medway 0 89 14 6 3 1 7 0 120

For the 2005–06 school year, KCC and Medway introduced a standardised school year, based on six terms, as recommended by the Local Government Association in its 2000 report, "The Rhythms of Schooling".[51]

Kent County Council LEA maintains 96 secondary schools, of which 33 are selective schools and 63 are secondary modern schools. Kent has the highest number of National Challenge schools in England, schools which are branded "failing" based on the UK Government's floor targets that 30% of pupils achieve at least 5 GCSE grades A* to C.[52] Of the 63 secondary modern schools, 33 achieved below this requirement meaning that 52% of Kent secondary modern schools (34% out of all 96 maintained secondary schools) are failing.[53]

Local media

Television

Much of Kent is served by the BBC's South East region, which is based in Royal Tunbridge Wells and provides local news for the county and East Sussex. Its commercial rival is ITV Meridian Ltd, which has a newsroom at The Maidstone Studios despite the main studio being based in Hampshire. Main transmitters providing these services are located at West Hougham, near Dover and Bluebell Hill, located between Chatham and Maidstone. Those parts of Kent closer to London such as Gravesend, Dartford and Sevenoaks lie within the ITV London and BBC London areas, taking their television signals from the Crystal Palace transmitter.

The county is also served by two internet-based TV channels, Kent TV (part-owned by Kent County Council) and YourKentTV which is owned by KOS Media.

Radio

Kent has three county-wide stations – BBC Radio Kent, based in Royal Tunbridge Wells; and the commercial stations Heart, based in Whitstable, and the Kent opt-out for Gold.

Most of the county is covered by local radio network KMFM, owned by the KM Group. Other than the breakfast show, programmes are the same across all seven stations in the network:

The county has 3 community radio stations. BRFM covers the Isle of Sheppey, while Sittingbourne is served by SFM. Canterbury is also covered by the university station CSR 97.4FM, a joint production between the city's two universities.

Newspapers

The KM Group, KOS Media and Kent Regional News and Media all provide local newspapers for most of the large towns and cities. County-wide papers include the Kent Messenger, Kent on Saturday, Kent on Sunday, and the Kent and Sussex Courier[citation needed].

See also

References

  1. ^ Kent loses its Garden of England title to North Yorkshire The Guardian 1 June 2006
  2. ^ Garden of England title defended BBC 1 June 2006
  3. ^ Ashbee, Paul (2005). Kent in prehistoric times. Tempus. 
  4. ^ Glover, J.. Place names of Kent. 
  5. ^ Witney, K. P. (1982). The Kingdom of Kent. 
  6. ^ "Victoria County History of Kent". KentArchaeology.org.uk. May 2006. http://www.kentarchaeology.org.uk/Research/03/03/01C/064.htm. Retrieved 2007-04-20. 
  7. ^ "Archbishop of Canterbury". Spartacus.SchoolNet.co.uk. http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/NORarchcanterbury.htm. Retrieved 2007-06-19. 
  8. ^ David Bates (1975). The Character and Career of Odo, Bishop of Bayeux (1049/50-1097). Speculum. 
  9. ^ "Peasants' Revolt". Britannia.com. http://www.britannia.com/history/articles/peasantsrevolt.html. Retrieved 2007-04-20. 
  10. ^ "Sir Thomas WYATT, "The Younger"". TudorPlace.com.ar. http://www.tudorplace.com.ar/Bios/ThomasWyatt(Sir)2.htm. Retrieved 2007-04-20. 
  11. ^ The Historic Dockyard Chatham — where legends were created. Jarrold Publishing. 2005. 
  12. ^ "The Dutch In The Medway". DeRuyter.org. http://www.deruyter.org/CHATHAM_Dutch_in_the_Medway.html. Retrieved 2007-04-20. 
  13. ^ Oliver, Richard (1995). Ordnance Survey maps: a concise guide for historians 2nd Ed. Ordnance Survey. ISBN 1870598245. 
  14. ^ "South-East England". Smuggler's Britain. http://www.smuggling.co.uk/gazetteer_se_14.html. Retrieved 2007-04-20. 
  15. ^ a b c d Jessup, Frank W. (1966). Kent History Illustrated. Kent County Council. 
  16. ^ "Medway". Communities and Local Government. http://www.communities.gov.uk/index.asp?id=1170128. Retrieved 2007-04-20. 
  17. ^ "Error costs Rochester city status". BBC News. 2002-05-16. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/england/1991827.stm. Retrieved 2007-04-20. 
  18. ^ "UK Records". BBC Weather. http://www.bbc.co.uk/weather/features/understanding/uk_records.shtml. Retrieved 2009-06-10. 
  19. ^ "English Channel". Microsoft Encarta Online Encyclopedia 2007. Archived from the original on 2009-11-01. http://www.webcitation.org/query?id=1257036635752931. Retrieved 2007-04-20. 
  20. ^ a b Greensand Way in Kent. Kent Count Council. 1992. ISBN 1-873010-23-0. 
  21. ^ a b c Britain's Structure and Scenery, L.Dudley Stamp, Pub September 1946, Collins New Naturalist Series.
  22. ^ "Kent Downs". KentDowns.org. http://www.kentdowns.org.uk/. Retrieved 2007-04-20. 
  23. ^ "Geology of Kent and Boulonnais". The Geology Shop. 2000. http://www.geologyshop.co.uk/geolkb.htm. Retrieved 2009-08-08. 
  24. ^ "Quake causes Kent Families to flee Homes". The Guardian. 2007-04-29. http://observer.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,,2068090,00.html. Retrieved 2007-04-28. 
  25. ^ a b Bowskill, Derek. Map Of The River Medway. 
  26. ^ http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/homeandleisure/recreation/boating/31577.aspx Environmental Agency: River Medway
  27. ^ a b c "Neighbourhood Statistics". Statistics.gov.uk. http://neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk/dissemination/LeadHome.do;jsessionid=ac1f930bce6a711447e60ba4446bb56c21648d42c51.e38PbNqOa3qRe38OaNeKahqMai1ynknvrkLOlQzNp65In0?bhcp=1. Retrieved 2007-03-29. 
  28. ^ Kent (Borough of Gillingham and City of Rochester upon Medway) (Structural Change) Order 1996 "Kent (Borough of Gillingham and City of Rochester upon Medway) (Structural Change) Order 1996". HMSO. http://www.uk-legislation.hmso.gov.uk/si/si1996/Uksi_19961876_en_1.htm. Retrieved 2010-03-17. 
  29. ^ "Council and democracy". Kent County Council. http://www.kent.gov.uk/council-and-democracy/. Retrieved 2007-04-19. 
  30. ^ "Democratically elected representatives in Medway". Medway Council. http://www.medway.gov.uk/index/council/councillor.htm. Retrieved 2007-05-13. 
  31. ^ "UK MEPs". UK Office Of The European Parliament. http://www.europarl.org.uk/uk_meps/MembersMain.htm. Retrieved 2007-04-03. 
  32. ^ "Regional Gross Value Added" (PDF). Office for National Statistics. http://www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_economy/RegionalGVA.pdf. Retrieved 2007-04-03. 
  33. ^ "Closure of Dungeness Power Station". BBC News. 2006-12-31. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/kent/6203953.stm. Retrieved 2007-04-03. 
  34. ^ "The Chatham News Index" (PDF). Parret & Neves. 1996. http://www.gparrett.btinternet.co.uk/chatnews/cnidx_r2.pdf. Retrieved 2007-04-19. 
  35. ^ "Coal fields Heritage Initiative". Dover Museum. http://www.dover.gov.uk/kentcoal/intro.asp. Retrieved 2007-04-20. 
  36. ^ "Snowdown Colliery". FreeUK.com. http://home.freeuk.com/eastkent/mining/snowdown_colliery.htm. Retrieved 2007-04-19. 
  37. ^ "Charles Dickens". InfoBritain. http://www.infobritain.co.uk/Charles_Dickens.htm. Retrieved 2007-04-20. 
  38. ^ "The Turner Connection". TurnerContemporary.org. http://www.turnercontemporary.org/about/?p=15. Retrieved 2007-06-20. 
  39. ^ "William Golding — Biography". William-Golding.co.uk. http://www.william-golding.co.uk/p_biography.html. Retrieved 2007-06-20. 
  40. ^ "The lost railway". BBC. http://www.bbc.co.uk/kent/content/articles/2008/05/27/history_lost_railway_feature.shtml. Retrieved 2008-08-01. 
  41. ^ a b "History of the South Eastern & Chatham Railway". The South Eastern & Chatham Railway Society. http://www.southeasternandchathamrailway.org.uk/webpages/History.htm. Retrieved 2007-04-22. 
  42. ^ "Failed rail franchise 'needed time'". BBC. 2003-11-13. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/3268719.stm. Retrieved 2007-05-13. 
  43. ^ "Rail workers vote to hold strikes". BBC. 2006-04-13. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/4905966.stm. Retrieved 2007-05-13. 
  44. ^ "New station means Eurostar change". BBC. 2006-09-12. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/kent/5337586.stm. Retrieved 2007-04-22. 
  45. ^ "Airport plan threatens Dickens' legacy". BBC. 2006-09-12. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/2093415.stm. Retrieved 2007-06-20. 
  46. ^ "Saving nature". The Times. 2008-03-23. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/related_features/love_nature/article3625154.ece. Retrieved 2009-09-06. 
  47. ^ "Call for end to selective education as 'grammar school areas' fail". The Independent. 2007-01-20. http://education.independent.co.uk/news/article2169188.ece. Retrieved 2007-05-14. 
  48. ^ "Grammar schools have expanded". BBC News. 2004-03-26. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/education/3571387.stm. Retrieved 2007-04-03. 
  49. ^ "Kent's selective schools compared". BBC News. 2003-01-17. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/education/2666605.stm. Retrieved 2007-05-13. 
  50. ^ "Department for Education and Skills". Department for Education and Skills. http://www.dfes.gov.uk/. Retrieved 2007-05-13. 
  51. ^ "Kent County Council". Kent County Council. http://www.kent.gov.uk/. Retrieved 2007-04-03. 
  52. ^ BBC NEWS | UK | Education | Brown threatens 'failing' schools
  53. ^ http://www.dcsf.gov.uk/nationalchallenge/downloads/DataSheet.pdf

External links

Coordinates: 51°11′N 0°44′E / 51.19°N 0.73°E / 51.19; 0.73


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

For other places with the same name, see Kent (disambiguation).

Kent [1] is the most south-eastern county of South-East England. Popularly known as the "Garden of England".

Map of Kent
Map of Kent

Understand

Kent was originally one of the kingdoms of the Jutes, although its name derives from one of the Celtic tribes of Britain, the Cantiaci. As the closest part of England to the continent of Europe (it is just 12 miles from Dover to Calais), it has historically been the focal point for invasion attempts, and is traditionally the major embarkation point for travel to mainland Europe.

Due to the extensive agriculture, orchards and hop farms, Kent is known as the "Garden of England", a fact reflected in the new car registration plates - the letter representing Kent is "G" for "Garden" rather than "K" for "Kent".

  • Kent International Airport [2], located at Manston, is serviced by flights from numerous European airports.
  • Gatwick International Airport is half an hour's drive from Kent's western borders. It is linked by a 30 minute rail journey to Tonbridge.
  • Lydd Airport flights to France

By train

Kent has an extensive rail network, with lines running all along the coast and up through all the major towns and into London. The London terminus stations into which Kent rail services operate are Victoria, Charing Cross, Cannon Street, Waterloo East, London Bridge, Blackfriars and St.Pancras International.

Ebbsfleet and Ashford International Stations are railway stations which provide transport between UK and Europe. Several trains operate each hour direct to Ebbsfleet, Ashford and Paris, Lille or Brussels.Ebbsfleet is located on purpose developed land, with onsite car parking for over 9000 vehicles. Domestic trains are operated by SouthEastern From London St Pancras to Ebbsfleet (typical journey time 15 - 17 minutes)and Ashford (typical journey time from St. Pancras being 30 minutes). As of December 2009 the new high-speed trains on the St Pancras International routes will have a full timetable. Also from December 2009 the high speed services will be further extended to Gravesend, the Medway towns, Sittingbourne, Faversham, Whitstable, Herne Bay and stations to Margate and Ramsgate. An off-peak service will operate via Gravesend and the Medway towns, terminating at Faversham. A high speed service will also be offered to the Thanet towns via Ashford and Canterbury West, bringing the Cathedral city within an hour from London.

  • From London, take the A2 arterial road from either London or the M25 Orbital motorway to Ebbsfleet.
  • Local Fastrack [3] buses are operated by Arriva [4].

By car

From Junction 5 of the M25 the A21 leads to Hastings via Sevenoaks, Tonbridge and Tunbridge Wells.

The M20 leads from the M25 to Dover and Folkestone via Maidstone and Ashford.

Get around

By bus

Arriva [5](throughout) and Stagecoach[6] (mainly east Kent) operate in this area.

  • Dover Castle in Dover.
  • The White Cliffs of Dover - spectacular chalk cliffs over which was fought the Battle of Britain in Dover.
  • Scotney Castle [7] near Tunbridge Wells.
  • Hever Castle near Sevenoaks- where Henry VIII spent his honeymoon(s).
  • Leeds Castle near Maidstone - built in 1119 and held by six medieval queens.
  • Cathedrals at Canterbury and Rochester.
  • Kent & East Sussex Railway[8] Operates between Tenterden and Bodiam in east Sussex, passing through some very attractive countryside in the process.
  • The Historic Dockyard in Chatham.
  • The New Inn, Canterbury Road, Etchinghill, Folkestone. +44 (0) 1303 862026. The closest pub to the Channel Tunnel (at either jnc 11 or jnc 12 on the M20). A 16th century coaching inn, village pub and highly popular restaurant. Fantastic reputation for fine cuisine, open seven days a week for lunches and evening meals. Terrific food, real ale, oak beams & cosy atmosphere.
  • Kent-based Shepherd Neame is the oldest brewing company in Britain.
  • Kent also produces wine, with the vineyards in Tenterden and Lamberhurst probably the most well-established producers.

Stay safe

Kent is a generally safe area and you are very unlikely to experience any trouble during your visit.

  • East Sussex lies to the west, and Surrey and London to the north. France, The Netherlands and Belgium are just a short hop over the channel.
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1911 encyclopedia

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Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

See also kent

Contents

English

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Wikipedia has an article on:

Wikipedia

Etymology

Old English Cent, from Latin Cantia, from Brythonic Celtic *Cantus probably meaning ‘border region, coastal region’.

Pronunciation

Proper noun

Singular
Kent

Plural
-

Kent

  1. A maritime county in the southeast of England bordered by Sussex, Surrey, London, the North Sea and the English Channel.
  2. A surname derived from the place name.
  3. A male given name transferred from the surname; of mostly American usage, but never popular.

Translations


Danish

Proper noun

Kent

  1. A male given name borrowed from English, interpreted as a short form of Kenneth.

Norwegian

Proper noun

Kent

  1. A male given name borrowed from English and interpreted as a short form of Kenneth.

Swedish

Alternative spellings

Etymology

Borrowed from English in early 20th century , at the same time as Kenneth. Generally taken for a short form of Kenneth in Scandinavia.

Proper noun

Kent

  1. A male given name popular in the 1950s and 1960s.

Genealogy

Up to date as of February 01, 2010

From Familypedia

This article requires significantly more historical detail on the particular phases of this location's historical development. The ideal article for a place will give the reader a feel for what it was like to live at that location at the time their relatives were alive there..
Please help to improve this page yourself if you can..
Kent

<tr><td colspan="2" style="text-align: center; background: white;">File:Kent flag.svg</td></tr>

File:EnglandKent.png
Geography
Status Ceremonial & (smaller) Non-metropolitan county
Region South East England
Area
- Total
- Admin. council
- Admin. area
Ranked 10th
3,736 km² (1,442.5 sq mi)
Ranked 10th
3,544 km² (1,368.3 sq mi)

<tr><th>Admin HQ</th><td class="label">Maidstone</td></tr><tr><th>ISO 3166-2</th><td>GB-KEN</td></tr>

ONS code 29
NUTS 3 UKJ42
Demographics
Population
- Total (2006 est.)
- Density
- Admin. council
- Admin. pop.
Ranked 7th Image:Wp_globe_tiny.gif
1,634,500
437/km² (1,131.8/sq mi)
Ranked 1st Image:Wp_globe_tiny.gif
1,382,800
Ethnicity 96.9% White
1.9% Asian
Politics
Kent County Council
http://www.kent.gov.uk/
Medway Council
http://www.medway.gov.uk/

<tr><th>Executive</th><td>Conservative </td></tr>

Members of Parliament
Districts
File:KentDistrictsNumbered.svg
  1. Sevenoaks
  2. Dartford
  3. Gravesham
  4. Tonbridge and Malling
  5. Medway (Unitary)
  6. Maidstone
  7. Tunbridge Wells
  8. Swale
  9. Ashford
  10. Canterbury
  11. Shepway
  12. Thanet
  13. Dover

Kent is a county in southeast England. It borders East Sussex, Surrey and Greater London and has a defined boundary with Essex in the middle of the River Thames estuary. The ceremonial county boundaries of Kent include the shire county of Kent and the unitary borough of Medway. Kent has a nominal border with France halfway through the Channel Tunnel. Maidstone is its county town and historically Rochester and Canterbury have been accorded city status though only the latter still holds it.

Kent's location between London and the continent has led to its being a front line of several conflicts, including the Battle of Britain during World War II. East Kent was named Hell Fire Corner during the conflict. England has relied on the county's ports to provide warships through much of the past 800 years; the Cinque Ports in the 12th–14th centuries and Chatham Dockyard in the 16th–20th centuries were of particular importance to the country's security. France can be seen clearly in fine weather from the iconic White Cliffs of Dover

Because of its abundance of orchards and hop gardens, Kent is widely known as "The Garden of England" - an epithet often applied when marketing the county or its produce, although other regions have tried to lay claim to the title.[1][2]

Major industries in the north-west of Kent have included cement, papermaking, and aircraft construction, but these are now in decline.South and East Kent rely on tourism and agriculture.

Contents

History

File:Arms-kent.jpg

Main article: History of Kent

The area has been occupied since the Palaeolithic era, as attested by finds from the quarries at Swanscombe. The Medway megaliths were built during the Neolithic era. There is a rich sequence of Bronze Age, Iron Age, and Roman era occupation, as indicated by finds and features such as the Ringlemere gold cup and the Roman villas of the Darent valley.[3]

The modern name of Kent is derived from the Brythonic word Cantus meaning "rim" or "border". This describes the eastern part of the current county area as a border land or coastal district. Julius Caesar had described the area as Cantium, or home of the Cantiaci in 51 BC.[4]

The extreme west of the modern county was occupied by Iron Age tribes, known as the Regnenses. It is possible that another ethnic group occupied The Weald and East Kent. East Kent became a kingdom of the Jutes during the 5th century[5] and was known as Cantia from about 730 and as Cent in 835. The early medieval inhabitants of the county were known as the Cantwara, or Kent people. These people regarded the city of Canterbury as their capital.[6]

In 597, Pope Gregory I appointed Augustine as the first Archbishop of Canterbury. In the previous year, Augustine successfully converted the Pagan King Æthelberht of Kent to Christianity. The Diocese of Canterbury became Britain's first Episcopal See and has since remained Britain's centre of Christianity.[7]

In the early 11th century, the people of Kent adopted the motto Invicta, meaning "undefeated". This naming followed the invasion of Britain by William of Normandy. The Kent people's continued resistance against the Normans led to Kent's designation as a semi-autonomous County Palatine in 1067. Under the nominal rule of William's half-brother Odo of Bayeux, the county was granted similar powers to those granted in the areas bordering Wales and Scotland.[8]

During the medieval and early modern period, Kent played a major role in several of England's most notable rebellions, including the Peasants' Revolt of 1381, led by Wat Tyler,[9] Jack Cade's Kent rebellion of 1450, and Wyatt's Rebellion of 1553 against Queen Mary I.[10]

The Royal Navy first used the River Medway in 1547. By the reign of Elizabeth I (1558–1603) a small dockyard had been established at Chatham. By 1618, storehouses, a ropewalk, a drydock, and houses for officials had been built downstream from Chatham.[11]

By the 17th century, tensions between Britain and the powers of the Netherlands and France led to increasing military build-up in the county. Forts were built all along the coast following the raid on the Medway, a successful attack by the Dutch navy on the shipyards of the Medway towns in 1667.[12]

The 18th century was dominated by wars with France, during which the Medway became the primary base for a fleet that could act along the Dutch and French coasts. When the theatre of operation moved to the Atlantic, this role was assumed by Portsmouth and Plymouth, with Chatham concentrating on shipbuilding and ship repair. Many of the Georgian naval buildings during this time still stand.

In the early 1800s, smugglers were very active on the Kent coastline. Gangs such as The Aldington Gang brought spirits, tobacco and salt to the county, and transported goods such as wool across the sea to France.[13]

In 1881, the County of London was created and the townships of Deptford, Greenwich, Woolwich, Lee, Eltham, Charlton, Kidbrooke and Lewisham were transferred out of Kent.

During World War II, much of the Battle of Britain was fought in the skies over the county. Between June 1944 and March 1945, over 10,000 V1 flying bombs, known as "Doodlebugs", were fired on London from bases in Northern France. Many were destroyed by aircraft, anti-aircraft guns, and barrage balloons, yet both London and Kent were hit by around 2,500 of these bombs.

After the war, Kent's borders changed several more times. In 1965 the London boroughs of Bromley and Bexley were created from nine towns formerly in Kent.[14] In 1998, Rochester, Chatham, Gillingham, and Rainham left the administrative county of Kent to form the Unitary Authority of Medway. They have, however, remained in the ceremonial county of Kent.[15] During this reorganisation, through an administrative oversight, the city of Rochester lost its official city status.[16]

Physical geography

Main article: Geography of Kent

File:White cliffs of dover 09 2004.jpg

Kent is the at the southeastern end of England. It borders the River Thames and the North Sea to the north, and the Straits of Dover and the English Channel to the south. France is 21 miles (34 km) across the Strait.[17]

The major geographical features of the county are determined by a series of ridges and valleys running east-west across the county. These are the results of weathering to the Wealden dome, a dome across Kent and Sussex created by Alpine movements 10–20 million years ago. This dome consists of an upper layer of chalk above subsequent layers of upper greensand, upper clay, lower greensand, lower clay, and red sandstone. The ridges and valleys formed as the exposed clay eroded faster than the exposed chalk, greensand, or red sandstone.

File:KentGeology.JPG Sevenoaks, Maidstone, Ashford, and Folkestone are built on greensand,[18] while Tonbridge and Tunbridge Wells are built on red sandstone.[19] Dartford, Gravesend, the Medway towns, Sittingbourne, Faversham, Canterbury, Deal, and Dover are built on chalk.[18][19] The easterly section of the Wealden dome has been eroded away by the sea, and cliffs such as the white cliffs of Dover are present where a chalk ridge known as the North Downs meets the coast. Spanning Dover and Westerham is the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.[20]

The Wealden dome is a Mesozoic structure lying on a Palaeozoic foundation, which usually creates the right conditions for coal formation. This is found in East Kent roughly between Deal, Canterbury, and Dover. The coal measures within the Westphalian Sandstone are deep (below 244 m – 396 m) and subject to flooding. They occur in two major troughs, which extend under the English Channel where similar coalfields are located.[21]

Seismic activity has occasionally been recorded in Kent, though the epicentres were offshore. In 1382 and 1580 there were two earthquakes exceeding 6.0 on the Richter Scale. In 1776, 1950, and on 28 April 2007 there were earthquakes of around 4.3. The 2007 earthquake caused physical damage in Folkestone.[22]

File:KentGeologyWealdenDome.svg The coastline of Kent is continuously changing, due to tectonic uplift and coastal erosion. Until about 960, the Isle of Thanet was an island, separated by the Wantsum channel, formed around a deposit of chalk; over time, the channels silted up with alluvium. Similarly Romney Marsh and Dungeness have been formed by accumulation of alluvium.[19]

Kent's principal river, the River Medway, rises near Edenbridge and flows some 25 miles (40 km) eastwards to a point near Maidstone. Here it turns north and breaks through the North Downs at Rochester, then joins the River Thames as its final tributary near Sheerness.[23] The river is tidal as far as Allington lock, but in earlier times, cargo-carrying vessels reached as far upstream as Tonbridge.[23] The Medway has captured the head waters of other rivers such as the River Darent. Other rivers of Kent include the River Stour in the east.

Demographics

Kent Compared
2001 UK census Kent South East England England
Total population 1,579,206 8,000,645 49,138,831
Foreign born 5.8% 8.1% 9.2%
White 96.5% 95.1% 90.9%
Asian 2.0% 2.7% 4.6%
Black 0.4% 0.7% 2.3%
Christian 74.6% 72.8% 72%
Muslim 0.6% 1.4% 3.1%
Sikh 0.7% 0.5% 0.7%

As of the 2001 UK census,[24] Kent, including Medway, had 1,579,206 residents and 646,308 households, of which 1,329,718 residents and 546,742 households were within the administrative boundaries. Of those households, 48.9% were married couples living together, 9.0% were co-habiting couples and 8.7% were lone parents; 28.0% of households consisted of individuals, 14.6% had someone of pensionable age living alone, and 30.4% included children aged under 16 or a person aged 16 to 18 who was in full-time education. For every 100 females, there were 93.9 males.

The ethnicity of the Kent was 96.5% White, 0.9% mixed race, 0.3% Chinese, 1.7% other Asian and 0.4% Black. The place of birth for residents was 94.2% United Kingdom, 0.7% Republic of Ireland, 0.5% Germany, 0.9% other Western Europe countries, 0.3% Eastern Europe, 0.8% Africa, 0.6% Far East, 0.9% South Asia, 0.2% Middle East, 0.4% North America, 0.1% South America and 0.3% Oceania. Religion was recorded as 74.6% Christian, 0.7% Sikh, 0.6% Muslim, 0.4% Hindu, 0.2% Buddhist and 0.1% Jewish, while 15.2% were recorded as having no religion, 0.3% had an alternative religion, and 7.8% did not state their religion.

Government

Kent County Council (KCC) and its 12 district councils administer most of the county (3352 km²), while the Medway unitary authority administers the more densely populated remainder (192 km²). Together they have around 300 town and parish councils. Kent County Council's headquarters are in Maidstone,[25] while Medway's offices are in Strood and Gillingham.

As of the 2005 county council elections, Kent County Council was controlled by the Conservative Party;[26] 57 of the Council's 84 seats were held by the Conservatives, 21 by the Labour Party, 6 by the Liberal Democrats and 1 by an Independent.[27] As of the 2007 local elections, Medway Council was controlled by the Conservatives; 33 of the Council's 55 seats were held by the Conservatives, 13 by the Labour Party, 8 by the Liberal Democrats and 1 by an Independent.[28]. All of Kent's district councils were controlled by the Conservatives except for Ashford Borough Council, which was in no overall control.[29]

At the national level, Kent is represented in Parliament by 17 MPs, 10 of whom are Conservative and 7 are Labour. Kent is in the European Parliament constituency of South East England, which elects ten members of the European Parliament.[30]

Economy

As of the 2001 UK census,[24] employment statistics for the residents in Kent, including Medway, were as follows: 41.1% in full-time employment, 12.4% in part-time employment, 9.1% self-employed, 2.9% unemployed, 2.3% students with jobs, 3.7% students without jobs, 12.3% retired, 7.3% looking after home or family, 4.3% permanently sick or disabled, and 2.7% economically inactive for other reasons. Of residents aged 16–74, 16% had a higher education qualification or the equivalent, compared to 20% nationwide.[24]

File:StreetFarmOastFrittendenKent(ValVannet)Apr2006.jpg The average hours worked per week by residents of Kent were 43.1 for males and 30.9 for females. Their industry of employment was 17.3% retail, 12.4% manufacturing, 11.8% real estate, 10.3% health and social work, 8.9% construction, 8.2% transport and communications, 7.9% education, 6.0% public administration and defence, 5.6% finance, 4.8% other community and personal service activities, 4.1% hotels and restaurants, 1.6% agriculture, 0.8% energy and water supply, 0.2% mining, and 0.1% private households. This is higher than the whole of England for construction and transport/communications, and lower for manufacturing.

Kent is sometimes known as the "Garden of England" for its abundance of orchards and hop gardens. Distinctive hop-drying buildings called oast houses are common in the countryside, although many have been converted into dwellings. Nearer to London, market gardens also flourish.

However, in recent years, there has been a significant drop in agriculture, and industry and services are increasing their utilization of the area. This is illustrated by the following table of economic indicator gross value added (GVA) between 1995 and 2000 (figures are in millions of British Pounds Sterling). [31]

Year Regional GVA[A] Agriculture Industry[B] Services[C]
County of Kent (excluding Medway)
1995 12,369 379 3.1% 3,886 31.4% 8,104 65.5%
2000 15,259 259 1.7% 4,601 30.2% 10,399 68.1%
2003 18,126 287 1.6% 5,057 27.9% 12,783 70.5%
Medway
1995 1,823 21 3.1% 560 31.4% 1,243 68.2%
2000 2,348 8 1.7% 745 30.2% 1,595 67.9%
2003 2,671 10 1.6% 802 27.9% 1,859 69.6%
A 
Components may not sum to totals due to rounding
B 
includes energy and construction
C 
includes financial intermediation services indirectly measured


North Kent is heavily industrialised with cement-making at Northfleet and Cuxton, brickmaking at Sittingbourne, shipbuilding on the Medway and Swale, engineering and aircraft design and construction at Rochester, chemicals at Dartford and papermaking at Swanley, and oil refining at Grain.[14] There are two nuclear power stations at Dungeness, although the older one, built in 1965, was closed at the end of 2006.[31]

Cement-making, papermaking, and coal-mining were important industries in Kent during the 19th and 20th century. Cement came to the fore in the 19th century when massive building projects were undertaken. The ready supply of chalk and huge pits between Stone and Gravesend bear testament to that industry. There were also other workings around Burham on the tidal Medway.[32]

Kent's original paper mills stood on streams like the River Darent, tributaries of the River Medway, and on the River Stour. Two 18th century mills were on the River Len and at Tovil on the River Loose. In the late 19th century huge modern mills were built at Dartford and Northfleet on the River Thames and at Kemsley on The Swale.

From about 1900, several coal pits operated in East Kent. The Kent coalfield was mined during the 20th century at several collieries,[33] including Chislet, Tilmanstone, Betteshanger, and the Snowdown Colliery, which ran from 1908 to 1986.[34]

Arts

Kent has provided inspiration for several notable writers and artists. Canterbury's religious role gave rise to Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, a key development in the English language. The father of novelist Charles Dickens worked at the Chatham Dockyard; in many of his books, the celebrated novelist featured the scenery of Chatham, Rochester, and the Cliffe marshes.[35] The landscape painter J. M. W. Turner spent part of his childhood in the town of Margate in East Kent, and regularly returned to visit it throughout his life. The East Kent coast inspired many of his works, including some of his most famous seascapes.[36] During the late 1930s, Nobel Prize-awarded novelist William Golding worked as a teacher at Maidstone Grammar School, where he met his future wife Ann Brookfield.[36]

Transport

Main article: Transport in Kent

Roads

File:MedwayM2BridgeCloud0169.JPG With the Roman invasion, a road network was constructed to connect London to the Channel ports of Dover, Lympne and Richborough. The London–Dover road was Watling Street. These roads are now approximately the A2, B2068, A257, and the A28. The A2 runs through Dartford (A207), Gravesend, Rochester, Canterbury and Dover; the A20 through Eltham, Wrotham, Maidstone, Charing, Ashford. Hythe, Folkestone and Dover; the A21 through Bromley, Sevenoaks, Tonbridge, Tunbridge Wells and on to Hastings in East Sussex.[14] In the 1960s, two motorways were built; the M2 from Medway to Faversham, and the M20 from Swanley to Folkestone. Part of the M25 runs through Kent, from Westerham to the Kent and Essex tunnel at Dartford. The Dartford tunnel has been joined by the Queen Elizabeth II Bridge, together providing four lanes in each direction. The M26 motorway, built in 1980, provides a short link between the M25 at Sevenoaks and the M20 near Wrotham.

Water

The medieval Cinque Ports, except for Dover, have all now silted up. The Medway Estuary has been an important port and naval base for 500 years. The River Medway is tidal up to Allington and navigable up to Tonbridge. Kent's two canals are the Royal Military Canal between Hythe and Rye, which still exists, and the Thames and Medway Canal between Strood and Gravesend. Built in 1824, it was purchased in 1846 by the railways, which partially backfilled it.[14] A container port is located at Ramsgate.

Railways

File:StroodCTRL2.JPG The earliest locomotive-driven passenger-carrying railway in Britain was the Canterbury and Whitstable Railway which opened in 1830.[37] This and the London and Greenwich Railway later merged into South Eastern Railways (SER).[38] By the 1850s, SER's networks had expanded to Ashford, Ramsgate, Canterbury, Tunbridge Wells, and the Medway towns. SER's major London termini were London Bridge, Charing Cross, and Cannon Street. Kent also had a second major railway, the London (LCDR). Originally the East Kent Railway in 1858, it linked the northeast Kent coast with London terminals at Victoria and Blackfriars.

The two companies merged in 1899, forming the South Eastern and Chatham Railway (SECR). In the aftermath of World War I, the government's Railways Act 1921 grouped railway companies together; the SECR joined neighbouring London (LBSCR) and London and South Western Railway (LSWR) to form the Southern Railway.[38] Britain's railways were nationalised in 1948, forming British Rail. The railways were privatised in 1996 and most Kent passenger services were franchised to Connex South Eastern.[39]

The Channel Tunnel was completed in 1994 and connects to London Waterloo by a high speed link via Ashford International. In November 2007, the London terminus moved from Waterloo to St Pancras, and a new station, Ebbsfleet International, opened between Dartford and Gravesend, serving northern Kent.[40] .The high speed lines will be utilised to provide a faster train service to coastal towns like Ramsgate and Folkestone.

File:P9300406.JPG In addition to the "mainline" railways, there are several light, heritage, and industrial railways in Kent. There are three heritage, standard gauge railways; Spa Valley Railway near Tunbridge Wells on the old Tunbridge Wells West branch, East Kent Railway on the old East Kent coalfield area and the Kent and East Sussex Railway on the Weald around Tenterden. In addition there is the 15 inch gauge, tourist-oriented Romney on the southeast Kent coast along the Dungeness peninsular. Finally, there is the 2 ft 6 in, industrial Sittingbourne & Kemsley Light Railway.

Air

A limited number of charter flights are provided by Kent's London Biggin Hill Airport, Kent International Airport at Manston, and London Ashford Airport at Lydd. However, most passengers across the South East use the larger Heathrow, Gatwick, Stanstead and Luton airports. In 2002, it was revealed that the government is considering building a new four-runway airport on the marshland near the village of Cliffe on the Hoo Peninsula, but this plan is being protested by cultural and environmental groups.[41]

Education

See also: List of schools in Kent

The county has three universities; Canterbury Christ Church University with campuses throughout East Kent, University of Kent, with campuses in Canterbury and Medway, and University of Greenwich, with sites at Woolwich, Eltham and Medway. Whereas much of the UK adopted a comprehensive education system in the 1970s, Kent County Council (KCC) and Medway Unitary Authority are among around fifteen[42] local authorities still providing wholly selective education through the eleven-plus high schools and grammar schools. Together, the two Kent authorities have 38 of the 164 grammar schools remaining in the UK.[43]

KCC has the largest education department of any local authority in the UK,[44] providing school places for over 289,000 pupils.

Schools in Kent (data from 2000)[45]
LEA Nursery Primary Secondary
(High)
Secondary
(Grammar)
Special Pupil
Referral
Units
Independent City
Technology
College
Total
KCC 1 475 74 32 34 11 83 1 711
Medway 0 89 14 6 3 1 7 0 120

For the 2005-06 school year, KCC and Medway introduced a standardised school year, based on six terms, as recommended by the Local Government Association in its 2000 report, "The Rhythms of Schooling".[46]

Between September 2003 and August 2004, 70% of pupils in the Kent authority achieved Key Stage 2 Level 4 in mathematics, compared to 74% of pupils in England as a whole; 74% achieved Key Stage 2 Level 4 in English, compared to 78% nationally; 56% achieved five or more GCSE A*–C grades or the equivalent, compared to 54% nationally.[47]

As of the 2001 census, Kent residents between the ages of 16 and 74 received their highest academic qualifications in the following proportions: 16.8% a higher education qualification or the equivalent, 8.0% two or more A-levels or the equivalent, 21.0% five or more GCSE grades A*–C or the equivalent, and 18.2% one or more GCSEs passes or the equivalent. Of the remaining portion, 28.3% had no qualifications and 7.7% had a qualification of an unknown level.[48]

See also

References

  1. ^ Kent loses its Garden of England title to North Yorkshire The Guardian June 1, 2006
  2. ^ Garden of England title defended BBC 1 June 2006
  3. ^ Ashbee, Paul (2005). Kent in prehistoric times. Tempus. 
  4. ^ Glover, J.. Place names of Kent. 
  5. ^ Witney, K. P. (1982). The Kingdom of Kent. 
  6. ^ Victoria County History of Kent. KentArchaeology.org.uk (May 2006). Retrieved on 2007-04-20.
  7. ^ Archbishop of Canterbury. Spartacus.SchoolNet.co.uk. Retrieved on 2007-06-19.
  8. ^ {{cite book|author= David Bates
  9. ^ Peasants' Revolt. Britannia.com. Retrieved on 2007-04-20.
  10. ^ Sir Thomas WYATT, "The Younger". TudorPlace.com.ar. Retrieved on 2007-04-20.
  11. ^ (2005) The Historic Dockyard Chatham — where legends were created. Jarrold Publishing. 
  12. ^ The Dutch In The Medway. DeRuyter.org. Retrieved on 2007-04-20.
  13. ^ South-East England. Smuggler's Britain. Retrieved on 2007-04-20.
  14. ^ a b c d Jessup, Frank W. (1966). Kent History Illustrated. Kent County Council. 
  15. ^ Medway. Communities and Local Government. Retrieved on 2007-04-20.
  16. ^ {{cite web | title = Error costs Rochester city status | publisher = BBC News | url = http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/england/1991827.stm | date=2002-05-16
  17. ^ English Channel. Microsoft® Encarta® Online Encyclopedia 2007. Retrieved on 2007-04-20.
  18. ^ a b (1992) Greensand Way in Kent. Kent Count Council. ISBN 1-873010-23-0. 
  19. ^ a b c Britain's Structure and Scenery, L.Dudley Stamp., Pub Sept 1946, Collins New Naturalist Series.
  20. ^ Kent Downs. KentDowns.org. Retrieved on 2007-04-20.
  21. ^ Geology of Kent and Boulonnais. The Geology Shop (2000). Retrieved on 2007-04-21.
  22. ^ {{cite web | title = Quake causes Kent Families to flee Homes | publisher = The Guardian | url=http://observer.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,,2068090,00.html | date=2007-04-29
  23. ^ a b Bowskill, Derek. Map Of The River Medway. 
  24. ^ a b c Neighbourhood Statistics. Statistics.gov.uk. Retrieved on 2007-03-29.
  25. ^ Council and democracy. Kent County Council. Retrieved on 2007-04-19.
  26. ^ 2005 - Election Results In Kent. Kent Liberal Democrat. Retrieved on 2007-04-03.
  27. ^ Councillors. Kent County Council. Retrieved on 2007-05-13.
  28. ^ Democratically elected representatives in Medway. Medway Council. Retrieved on 2007-05-13.
  29. ^ English Councils A-Z. BBC. Retrieved on 2007-05-13.
  30. ^ UK MEPs. UK Office Of The European Parliament. Retrieved on 2007-04-03.
  31. ^ a b Regional Gross Value Added (PDF). Office for National Statistics. Retrieved on 2007-04-03.
  32. ^ The Chatham News Index (PDF). Parret & Neves (1996). Retrieved on 2007-04-19.
  33. ^ Coal fields Heritage Initiative. Dover Museum. Retrieved on 2007-04-20.
  34. ^ Snowdown Colliery. FreeUK.com. Retrieved on 2007-04-19.
  35. ^ Charles Dickens. InfoBritain. Retrieved on 2007-04-20.
  36. ^ a b The Turner Connection. TurnerContemporary.org. Retrieved on 2007-06-20.
  37. ^ The lost railway. BBC. Retrieved on 2007-05-13.
  38. ^ a b History of the South Eastern & Chatham Railway. The South Eastern & Chatham Railway Society. Retrieved on 2007-04-22.
  39. ^ {{cite web | title = Failed rail franchise 'needed time'| publisher = BBC | url = http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/3268719.stm | date=2003-11-13
  40. ^ {{cite web | title = New station means Eurostar change | publisher = BBC | url = http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/kent/5337586.stm | date=2006-09-12
  41. ^ {{cite web | title = Airport plan threatens Dickens' legacy | publisher = BBC | url = http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/2093415.stm | date=2006-09-12
  42. ^ {{cite web | title = Call for end to selective education as 'grammar school areas' fail | date = 2007-01-20
  43. ^ {{cite web | title = Grammar schools have expanded | date = 2004-03-26
  44. ^ {{cite web | title = Kent's selective schools compared | date = 2003-01-17
  45. ^ Department for Education and Skills. Department for Education and Skills. Retrieved on 2007-05-13.
  46. ^ Kent County Council. Kent County Council. Retrieved on 2007-04-03.
  47. ^ Key Figures for Education, Skills and Training. National Statistics. Retrieved on 2007-04-20.
  48. ^ Qualifications and Students. National Statistics. Retrieved on 2007-04-20.

External links

Template:County





CoordinatesImage:Wp_globe_tiny.gif: 51.19° N 0.73° E

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Kent. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.

This article uses material from the "Kent" article on the Genealogy wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

Simple English

Kent

File:Kent
Flag of Kent
Motto of County Council: ''Invicta''
[[File:]]
Geography
Status Ceremonial and (smaller) Non-metropolitan county
Region South East England
Area
- Total
- Admin. council
- Admin. area
Ranked 10th
3,736 km² (1,442 sq mi)
Ranked 10th
3,544 km² (1,368 sq mi)

Admin HQMaidstone
ISO 3166-2GB-KEN
ONS code 29
NUTS 3 UKJ42
Demography
Population
- Total (2005 est.)
- Density
- Admin. council
- Admin. pop.
Ranked 7th
1,621,000
434/km² (1,124/sq mi)
Ranked 1st
1,369,900
Ethnicity 96.9% White
1.9% Asian
Politics
[[File:|150px]]
"CANTIA"
Kent County Council
http://www.kent.gov.uk/
Medway Council
http://www.medway.gov.uk/

ExecutiveConservative
Members of Parliament
Districts
[[File:]]
  1. Sevenoaks
  2. Dartford
  3. Gravesham
  4. Tonbridge and Malling
  5. Medway (Unitary)
  6. Maidstone
  7. Tunbridge Wells
  8. Swale
  9. Ashford
  10. Canterbury
  11. Shepway
  12. Thanet
  13. Dover


Kent is a county in England. It is just to the south-east of London and is on the coast. The sea to the East of Kent is the North Sea. The sea south of Kent is called The English Channel by the British. France is opposite Kent on the other side of The Channel. At the most narrow point, between Dover, Calais and Cape Gris-Nez, The Channel is only 21 miles (34 km) wide. Dover is one of the main ports in Kent. From here many ferries sail to and from France.

Other main ports in Kent include Sheerness and Ramsgate. The Channel Tunnel goes from Folkstone in Kent to France. It was built in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

Kent is a very ancient county. It is often called 'the garden of England' because its countryside is very green and because it produces much fruit. A lot of fruit such as strawberries are grown in Kent, and the county is famous for growing hops which are used to make beer. Maidstone is called the county town because the local government for Kent is based there.

Another important town is Canterbury. The Archbishop of Canterbury is the head of The Church of England. Hundreds of years ago many Christian people would travel to the Cathedral at Canterbury from their homes in other parts of Britain. This was called making a pilgrimage.








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