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Benenden- A Walk Through Time

Walks from Cranbrook by Kent High Weald Partnership

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Difficulty: Moderate
Length: 10.7 miles
Duration: Half day

Overview :  This ten mile walk around the village of Benenden shows the western part of Kent at its best. The route follows the established High... more »

Tips:  Distance: 10.7 miles (17.2km) allow 5.5 hours
Start/Finish: The Weald Information Centre
Parking: Co-op car park,... more »

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Points of Interest

1. Church House

This is a 15th century building, formerly Dence's Charity School. From the path, you can see Cranbrook School, which succeeded Dence's School.

Known locally as the cathedral of the Weald, due to its impressive size. The present building dates from the 15th century, but it is believed that the monks of Canterbury founded a church on the site much earlier- around 1030. You will find more information about its history inside the church, which is well worth taking the time to visit.

3. Old Cloth Hall

This is a building whose name refers to the cloth industry that made Cranbrook wealthy from the 14th century. From this point, you can also see Coursehorn, now the site of Dulwich preparatory school.

4. Old Manor House

Originally moated, the house incorporates a medieval open hall built in 1390. The old Manor is probably the oldest-surviving house in the parish.

5. Queen's Well

On the site of the old Toll House is the Queen's Well, built to celebrate Queen Victoria's jubilee. Opposite the village green is Gibbon's School, built in 1609 by Edmund Gibbon, a clothier and local benefactor. The school is still in use.

6. St George's Church

There has been a church on this site since 1086, when it was listed in the Domesday Book. However, its roof was set alight during a storm in December 1672, and the church was destroyed, to be rebuilt in 1677. Its present interior owes much to Lord Cranbrook, who redesigned it in 1861. If you have time, look inside the church and find the... More

7. Strawberry Wood Culvert

The culvert is old and substantial and although designed to allow heavy loads to pass over it, its original function is still unknown. It may have been built to transport iron ore from local quarries to furnaces that existed in the area or perhaps sandstone, brick clay or marl- other materials that were commonly quarried in the Weald.
From the... More

8. Nineveh

Nineveh was an ancient Middle Eastern city, founded by the Assyrians, and is now Mosul, in Iraq. In the book of Jonah, in the Bible, Ninevah is depicted as 'a wicked city worthy of destruction'. It is possible that the name is linked to the properties owned in the past by Dissenters- people who split from the established Church.

9. Parking