Lympne Castle is a medieval castle located in the village of Lympne, above Romney Marsh. The first castle was built in the 1080s for the Archdeacons of Canterbury on the edge of a cliff looking over the Romney Marshes, it was rebuilt in the 14th century by a building with a tower at each end, it is thought that the square tower may be on the site of a Roman watch tower. After being used as a farm it was purchased in 1905 by Francis John Tennant who commissioned Scottish architect Robert Lorimer to restore and extend the castle - works focussing upon the Great Hall with its linen fold paneling. During World War I, the castle was used for accommodation of the forces based on the newly constructed airport at Lympne, no longer in use. For part of the war, from about 1916 on-wards, the castle was used as a convalescent home for Canadian Soldiers. Between the wars it appears the area had quite a high social life with the Sassoon family building the famous house at Port Lympne, now centred in the wildlife park, attracting visitors such as Lord Boothby, Dorothy Macmillan, Noël Coward and Charlie Chaplin to name just a few.
The Second World War saw the last major construction at the castle, a look out post on the top of the Eastern Tower. This played an important part in the early sightings of the V1 Rockets - as on a clear day it was possible to see the explosions at the time of launching in Calais; this allowed about six minutes to alert the guns around the coastline causing many of the rockets to be shot down over the Hythe Bay. The castle suffered a decline after the war with it being used as a farm store until the Margery family brought it in 1962 and restored it. In the spring of 2000 the castle estates were offered for sale; the new owner has the same caring nature for the castle. This has been shown in the extent of work, undertaken. Below the castle, at the foot of the cliff, lies the remains of a Roman Shore fort, known as Stutfall Castle. Today, it is used as a venue for corporate events and weddings, it is not open to the public. The castle has been awarded No. 1 Best Wedding Venue in Kent in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 by Kent County Council.
In September 1978, Paul McCartney's Wings recorded sessions at the Lympne Castle for their 1979 album Back to the Egg. In 2012-13 the band British Sea Power composed the soundtrack to the BFI/BBC documentary film From the Sea to the Land Beyond at the castle. History of Lympne Castle List of sources related to Lympne Castle lympnecastle.co.uk Lympne Castle Gazette
The United Kingdom the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, sometimes referred to as Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world; the Irish Sea lies between Great Ireland. With an area of 242,500 square kilometres, the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world, it is the 22nd-most populous country, with an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017. The UK is constitutional monarchy; the current monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, who has reigned since 1952, making her the longest-serving current head of state.
The United Kingdom's capital and largest city is London, a global city and financial centre with an urban area population of 10.3 million. Other major urban areas in the UK include Greater Manchester, the West Midlands and West Yorkshire conurbations, Greater Glasgow and the Liverpool Built-up Area; the United Kingdom consists of four constituent countries: England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Their capitals are London, Edinburgh and Belfast, respectively. Apart from England, the countries have their own devolved governments, each with varying powers, but such power is delegated by the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which may enact laws unilaterally altering or abolishing devolution; the nearby Isle of Man, Bailiwick of Guernsey and Bailiwick of Jersey are not part of the UK, being Crown dependencies with the British Government responsible for defence and international representation. The medieval conquest and subsequent annexation of Wales by the Kingdom of England, followed by the union between England and Scotland in 1707 to form the Kingdom of Great Britain, the union in 1801 of Great Britain with the Kingdom of Ireland created the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
Five-sixths of Ireland seceded from the UK in 1922, leaving the present formulation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. There are fourteen British Overseas Territories, the remnants of the British Empire which, at its height in the 1920s, encompassed a quarter of the world's land mass and was the largest empire in history. British influence can be observed in the language and political systems of many of its former colonies; the United Kingdom is a developed country and has the world's fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP and ninth-largest economy by purchasing power parity. It has a high-income economy and has a high Human Development Index rating, ranking 14th in the world, it was the world's first industrialised country and the world's foremost power during the 19th and early 20th centuries. The UK remains a great power, with considerable economic, military and political influence internationally, it is sixth in military expenditure in the world. It has been a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council since its first session in 1946.
It has been a leading member state of the European Union and its predecessor, the European Economic Community, since 1973. The United Kingdom is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, the Council of Europe, the G7, the G20, NATO, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the World Trade Organization; the 1707 Acts of Union declared that the kingdoms of England and Scotland were "United into One Kingdom by the Name of Great Britain". The term "United Kingdom" has been used as a description for the former kingdom of Great Britain, although its official name from 1707 to 1800 was "Great Britain"; the Acts of Union 1800 united the kingdom of Great Britain and the kingdom of Ireland in 1801, forming the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Following the partition of Ireland and the independence of the Irish Free State in 1922, which left Northern Ireland as the only part of the island of Ireland within the United Kingdom, the name was changed to the "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".
Although the United Kingdom is a sovereign country, Scotland and Northern Ireland are widely referred to as countries. The UK Prime Minister's website has used the phrase "countries within a country" to describe the United Kingdom; some statistical summaries, such as those for the twelve NUTS 1 regions of the United Kingdom refer to Scotland and Northern Ireland as "regions". Northern Ireland is referred to as a "province". With regard to Northern Ireland, the descriptive name used "can be controversial, with the choice revealing one's political preferences"; the term "Great Britain" conventionally refers to the island of Great Britain, or politically to England and Wales in combination. However, it is sometimes used as a loose synonym for the United Kingdom as a whole; the term "Britain" is used both as a synonym for Great Britain, as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Usage is mixed, with the BBC preferring to use Britain as shorthand only for Great Britain and the UK Government, while accepting that both terms refer to the United K
Dollands Moor Freight Yard
Dollands Moor Freight Yard is a railway freight yard near Folkestone in Kent, was purpose built in 1988 for the Channel Tunnel. It is to the west of the Eurotunnel Folkestone Terminal, just to the south of the M20 Motorway. Dollands Moor has eight roads in the yard with an additional five roads which are through lines and run-round loops. All lines are electrified at 25 kV overhead wires and connections to the west of the yard are dually electrified with a third rail; this is to allow access to the South-Eastern Main Line at Saltwood Junction just to the east of Sandling Station. Dollands Moor has been operated by Railfreight Distribution since its opening EWS and now DB Schenker. Other freight operators do not stop there; the function of Dollands Moor is for crew changes rather than marshalling. Most trains operating from Dollands Moor are of the Trainload variety and if any marshalling is required, this was undertaken at European Freight Operating Centre in Wembley, but with the drawdown of the Wagonload network in the UK they now go to Didcot.
At the time of writing just one Fridays only working Wagonload train goes through Dollands Moor to Didcot The lines from Dollands Moor and the Channel Tunnel Rail Link are measured in kilometres whereas Network Rail lines are measured in miles and chains. Illegal immigrants have been a problem for Dollands Moor. Dollands Moor @ Kent Rail
Folkestone White Horse
The Folkestone White Horse is a white horse hill figure, carved into Cheriton Hill, Kent, South East England. It overlooks the English terminal of the Channel Tunnel and was completed in June 2003; the horse was planned as a Millennium Landmark to help regenerate the Folkestone area. The design for the horse was drawn by a local artist, Charlie Newington, inspired by a nearby Iron Age fort in an area known as Horse Hill dating from three millennia ago and based on the White Horse of Uffington, it is the first official hill figure in the town, although an area of chalk on Summerhouse Hill is said to resemble an elephant's head and has become known as the Folkestone Elephant. Planning permission for the project was first applied for in April 1998, with an illustrative canvas mockup being erected in August 1999; the project was opposed by the Government watchdog English Nature due to the site's importance as a Site of Special Scientific Interest. In 2000 English Nature appealed to Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott, although the project was said to have widespread public support by local MP and prominent politician Michael Howard.
The project was supported by Folkestone and Hythe District Council, who adopted it as their corporate logo. Due to the opposition, the project went to a public enquiry in 2001; the project was given the go-ahead in March 2002 by Stephen Byers Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions, who stated that the emotional and symbolic value of the project outweighed the possible environmental damage. Construction of the horse began in September 2002; the work to build the horse was completed by hand. Directed from afar by the artist via radio, a team of volunteers staked out a second canvas template of the horse, following this, shallow trenches were dug into the topsoil, 12–24 inches wide; these trenches were filled with limestone slabs. The entire figure is 90 metres long, measured from the front to the rear hoof. Both the Green Party and Friends of the Earth appealed to the European Union to stop the project based on the site's protection under the European Habitats Directive.
In early May 2003 the EU issued a formal notice to the UK Government declaring the work illegal, giving the government two months to either explain the 2001 enquiry decision satisfactorily, or restore the site, by which time the turf for the horse had been cut and transplanted. Over two weeks in May 2003 a team of volunteers including locally based Gurkha soldiers transported and positioned limestone slabs in the trenches, fixing them in place with pins; the limestone laying phase of the construction, delayed when the Gurkhas were needed to crew fire engines during the 2002–2003 Firemen's strike, was completed in early June 2003, with the formal notice from the EU outstanding. In June 2004 "The Friends of the Folkestone White Horse" was formed, to promote the landmark and look after the site, which requires periodic light weeding. A time capsule was buried on the site on 18 June 2004. Hill figures of England The White Horse at Ebbsfleet, a standing white horse sculpture planned for Ebbsfleet, Kent White horse of Kent, the prancing white horse symbol of Kent Friends of the Folkestone White Horse official site Information about the Folkestone White Horse
The Palmerston Forts are a group of forts and associated structures, around the coast of Britain. The forts were built during the Victorian period on the recommendations of the 1860 Royal Commission on the Defence of the United Kingdom, following concerns about the strength of the French Navy, strenuous debate in Parliament about whether the cost could be justified; the name comes from their association with Lord Palmerston, Prime Minister at the time and promoted the idea. The works were known as Palmerston's Follies because the first ones, around Portsmouth, had their main armament facing inland to protect Portsmouth from a land-based attack, which gave the impression that they faced the wrong way to defend from a French attack; because they were considered of questionable military value and one definition of "folly" is "a costly ornamental building with no practical value". They were criticized because by the time they were completed, any threat had passed due to the Franco-Prussian war of 1870, because the technology of the guns had become out-of-date.
They were the most extensive system of fixed defences undertaken in Britain in peacetime. Some sixty years there had been a similar period of defence works construction, when a couple of hundred circular towers were built for the same purpose called Martello Towers, but these had become outdated; the new defences were built to defend a number of key areas of the British and Channel Island coastline, in particular areas around military bases, including: A complete list is available online. Maunsell Forts High Knoll Fort Hurst Castle Martello tower Folly fort Media related to Palmerston forts at Wikimedia Commons Palmerston Forts Society Victorian Forts and Artillery
Kent is a county in South East England and one of the home counties. It borders Surrey to the west and East Sussex to the south-west; the county shares borders with Essex along the estuary of the River Thames, with the French department of Pas-de-Calais through the Channel Tunnel. The county town is Maidstone. Canterbury Cathedral in Kent has been the seat of the Archbishop of Canterbury, leader of the Church of England, since the Reformation. Prior to that it was built by Catholics, dating back to the conversion of England to Catholicism by Saint Augustine that began in the 6th century. Before the English Reformation the cathedral was part of a Benedictine monastic community known as Christ Church, Canterbury, as well as being the seat of the Catholic Archbishop of Canterbury; the last Catholic Archbishop of Canterbury was Reginald Pole. Rochester Cathedral is in Kent, in Medway, it is the second-oldest cathedral in England, with Canterbury Cathedral being the oldest. Between London and the Strait of Dover, which separates it from mainland Europe, Kent has seen both diplomacy and conflict, ranging from the Leeds Castle peace talks of 1978 and 2004 to the Battle of Britain in World War II.
England relied on the county's ports to provide warships through much of its history. France can be seen in fine weather from Folkestone and the White Cliffs of Dover. Hills in the form of the North Downs and the Greensand Ridge span the length of the county and in the series of valleys in between and to the south are most of the county's 26 castles; because of its relative abundance of fruit-growing and hop gardens, Kent is known as "The Garden of England". Kent's economy is diversified. In northwest Kent industries include extraction of aggregate building materials and scientific research. Coal mining has played its part in Kent's industrial heritage. Large parts of Kent are within the London commuter belt and its strong transport connections to the capital and the nearby continent makes Kent a high-income county. Twenty-eight per cent of the county forms part of two Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty: the North Downs and The High Weald; the name Kent is believed to be of British Celtic origin and was known in Old English as Cent, Cent lond, Centrice.
In Latin sources Kent is mentioned as Canticum. The meaning is explained by some researchers as "coastal district," or "corner-land, land on the edge". If so, the name could be etymologically related to the placename Cantabria a Celtiberian-speaking coastal region in pre-Roman Iberia, today a province of Spain; 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, Roman era occupation, as indicated by finds and features such as the Ringlemere gold cup and the Roman villas of the Darent valley; the modern name of Kent is derived from the Brythonic word kantos meaning "rim" or "border", or from a homonymous word kanto "horn, hook". This describes the eastern part of the current county area as coastal district. Julius Caesar had described the area as um, or home of the Cantiaci in 51 BC; the extreme west of the modern county was by the time of Roman Britain occupied by Iron Age tribes, known as the Regnenses.
Caesar wrote that the people of Kent are'by far the most civilised inhabitants of Britain'. East Kent became a kingdom of the Jutes during the 5th century and was known as Cantia from about 730 and recorded as Cent in 835; the early medieval inhabitants of the county were known as the Kent people. These people regarded the city of Canterbury as their capital. In 597, Pope Gregory I appointed the religious missionary as the first Archbishop of Canterbury. In the previous year, Augustine converted the pagan King Æthelberht of Kent to Christianity; the Diocese of Canterbury became England's first Episcopal See with first cathedral and has since remained England's centre of Christianity. The second designated English cathedral was in Kent at Rochester Cathedral. In the 11th century, the people of Kent adopted the motto Invicta, meaning "undefeated" or "unconquered"; 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. Kent was traditionally partitioned into East and West Kent, into lathes and hundreds; the traditional border of East and West Kent was the Medway. Men and women from east of the Medway are Men of Kent, those from the west are Kentishmen or Kentish Maids. 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,Jack Cade's Kent rebellion of 1450, Wyatt's Rebellion of 1554 against Queen Mary I; the Royal Navy first used the River Medway in 1547. By the reign of Elizabeth I a small dockyard had been established at Chatham. By 1618, storehouses, a ropewalk, a drydock, houses for officials had
Royal Commission on the Defence of the United Kingdom
The Royal Commission on the Defence of the United Kingdom was a committee formed in 1859 to enquire into the ability of the United Kingdom to defend itself against an attempted invasion by a foreign power, to advise the British Government on the remedial action required. The appointment of the Commission had been prompted by public concern about the growing military and naval power of the French Empire and was instigated by the Prime Minister, Henry Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston, who came to be associated with the project. In the following year, the Commission's report recommended a huge programme of fortification to defend the country's arsenals and naval bases. Many of the recommendations were acted upon. In the late 1850s, there were serious concerns that France might attempt to invade the United Kingdom; the recent period had seen great improvements in gunnery. These factors convinced him that Britain's coastal defences were inadequate to prevent invasion by Napoleon III if the Royal Navy was lured elsewhere.
The Commission consisted of six eminent naval and military officers, plus a civilian architect: Major-General Sir Henry David Jones CB Major-General Duncan Alexander Cameron Rear Admiral George Augustus Eliot Major-General Sir Frederick Abbott, Indian Army Captain Astley Cooper Key, Royal Navy Lieutenant-Colonel John Henry Lefroy, Royal Artillery James Fergusson EsquireThe Secretary of the Commission was Major William Jervois of the Royal Engineers, a progressive military engineer who held the post of Assistant Inspector-General of Fortifications. Although not appointed as a Commissioner, Jervois seems to have had considerable influence on the conduct of the Commission. Amongst the Commissioners themselves, Cooper Key was an expert in the latest advances in naval gunnery, while Lefroy was an experienced and knowledgeable artillery officer, one of the founders of the Royal Artillery Institution. Fergusson was an expert in the history of eastern architecture, but had published books entitled.
Formulated by Lord Palmerston and the Secretary of State for War, Sidney Herbert, the Commission's brief was as follows: Inquiries may be made by Our Commissioners into the condition and sufficiency of the Fortifications existing for the Defence of Our United Kingdom, examination had into all Works at present in progress for the improvement thereof, consideration given to the most effective means of rendering the same complete to all such Works of Defence as are intended for the protection of Our Royal Dockyards, in case of any hostile attack being made by foreign enemies, both by sea and land. An attached memorandum directed the attention of the Commissioners to the works under construction at Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight, Portland and Chatham. Starting on 3 November 1859, the first phase of the Commission's work was a series of interviews with technical experts and senior military and naval officers. One specialist was Captain Cowper Phipps Coles, the hero of the Siege of Taganrog and an expert in the bombardment of fortifications from the sea.
He was so enraged by the numerous questions posed by the Commissioners that he was twice asked to leave the room so that he could recover his composure. Because of this, the Commission failed to enquire about Coles's pioneering design for a revolving gun turret, which he had patented in that year. Another interviewee was General John Fox Burgoyne, who had conducted the Siege of Sevastopol and was the current Inspector-General of Fortifications. Burgoyne's opinion was that the defence of the dockyard at Portsmouth was of primary importance and it could be protected from bombardment by the fortification and garrisoning of the Isle of Wight and Portsdown Hill, the ridge which overlooks Portsmouth from the north. Burgoyne believed that the coast between Portsmouth and the Thames was vulnerable to invasion and that every small harbour there needed to be fortified. Sir William Armstrong, the artillery designer and manufacturer, was questioned at length about the current capabilities of modern rifled artillery and future developments.
Armstrong's opinion was that his latest guns would be able to defeat some features of current fortification, such as the Carnot wall, but that the maximum range of artillery would be unlikely to exceed 5 miles in the future. The Commission conducted a series of visits to the sites in question, before convening to produce a report of their findings; because the Commissioners were all respected experts in their own fields, they were able to work together amicably. The Report of the Commissioners was published on 7 February 1860; the Commissioners concluded that the fleet, standing army and volunteer forces combined, did not provide sufficient defence against invasion. Further, that the coastline which they considered to be at risk, the 700 miles from the Humber to Penzance, could not feasibly be fortified and therefore recommended that "the fortifications of t