Staplehurst

Last updated

Staplehurst
All Saints' church, Staplehurst - geograph.org.uk - 188892.jpg
All Saints' Church
Kent UK location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Staplehurst
Location within Kent
Population6,003 (2001) [1]
5,947 (2011 Census) [2]
District
Shire county
Region
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town Tonbridge
Postcode district TN12
Dialling code 01580
Police Kent
Fire Kent
Ambulance South East Coast
UK Parliament
List of places
UK
England
Kent
51°09′50″N0°33′11″E / 51.164°N 0.553°E / 51.164; 0.553 Coordinates: 51°09′50″N0°33′11″E / 51.164°N 0.553°E / 51.164; 0.553

Staplehurst /ˈstpəlhɜːrst/ is a town and civil parish in the borough of Maidstone in Kent, England, 9 miles (14 km) south of the town of Maidstone and with a population of 6,003. The town lies on the route of a Roman road, which is now incorporated into the course of the A229. The name Staplehurst comes from the Old English 'stapol' meaning a 'post, pillar' and 'hyrst', as a 'wooded hill'; therefore, 'wooded-hill at a post', [3] a possible reference to a boundary marker at the position of All Saints' church atop the hill along the road from Maidstone to Cranbrook. The parish includes the hamlet of Hawkenbury.

Contents

History

The first written mention of Staplehurst was in 1242 in a Tax list, [4] whilst All Saints' Church is believed to date back to the 12th century. The town was initially a series of hamlets and farmsteads set around local manors including Loddenden Manor, which still stands as a private residence in the heart of the town and dates back to the 16th century. [5] With time these hamlets became joined up to form the town.

In the early 19th century, Staplehurst was often visited by invalids seeking recuperation, especially those from Romney Marsh and East Kent, apparently attracted by the purity of the air. [6]

The Staplehurst rail crash, in 1865, [7] is a significant event in the history of the town. Charles Dickens, who was on board, was uninjured, but affected by the incident for the rest of his life. [8] [9]

In 2003, Staplehurst won the Kent Village of the Year Competition. [10]

Elderden Farm near Staplehurst was also the centre of police investigations following the Securitas depot robbery in 2006. [11] [12]

Governance

Staplehurst is governed by Staplehurst Parish Council, Maidstone Borough Council, and Kent County Council, the Chairman of which is Councillor Tom Burnham.

Culture and community

Religion

The 12th-century Anglican parish church, All Saints', is located at the highest point in the town. It belongs to the Diocese of Canterbury. It is a Grade I listed building. The town also has a United Reformed Church, a Free church and a Strict Baptist chapel.

The United Reformed Church was formerly a Congregational church before the merger with the Presbyterians in 1972. [13] The first pastor was Daniel Poyntell, who had been the Rector of Staplehurst Parish Church until he was ejected from the Church of England in 1662 for nonconformity. During his pastorship, and for many years afterwards, it was a Presbyterian church. The foundation of the present building was laid in 1825. [14]

The Strict Baptist chapel has been used a place of worship for Baptists since 1751, apparently having previously been used as a barn. The original congregation were General Baptists and were a continuation of the old Spilshill church that was formed around 1640. In 1838 the building was sold to the Particular Baptists.

The Free Church began in 1969 when a group began meeting for worship in homes throughout the town. The first church building was purchased in 1975 and the old Village Hall was purchased in 1989. The church was demolished in 2006 to make way for a new building which was completed in December 2012. [15]

Education

Staplehurst School, the village primary school, is located on Gybbon Rise, near the town centre shops. Around 440 pupils are taught in 18 classrooms. [16] The school was originally housed in the stone buildings off the A229 and moved to the new site when the population of the village grew in the 1980s. The old school then became the village community centre. The village also has a small library.

Transport

Staplehurst railway station is on the South Eastern Main Line from Ashford International railway station to London Charing Cross and London Cannon Street, via Tonbridge. It is also the main station for commuters from Cranbrook, Hawkhurst, Sissinghurst and other nearby villages. Before the completion of High Speed 1, the line was also used by Eurostar trains.

Sport and Recreation

Staplehurst Monarchs Football Club, founded in 1893, compete in the Southern Counties East Football League, whilst the club also has junior and women's teams. The club plays at Jubilee Field in the village.

The village is also home to the thriving Staplehurst Cricket and Tennis club which has 450 members.

Economy

Whilst Staplehurst has transport links to London, Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells, it is also home to a number of local businesses located in the industrial park near the station as well as the headquarters of electrical engineering firm Magnetic Shields [17] in the north of the town.

Towards the south of the town the parade and historic 'Town Heart' is home to a number of eateries and independent shops including a butcher, wine retailer, optician, hairdressers, local gift shop, and a public house dating back to the 18th century, the King's Head.

In recent years local vineyard Hush Heath Estate has gained renown for award-winning pink sparkling wine. [18]

Notable people

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wadhurst</span> Town in East Sussex, England

Wadhurst is a market town in East Sussex, England. It is the centre of the civil parish of Wadhurst, which also includes the hamlets of Cousley Wood and Tidebrook. Wadhurst is twinned with Aubers in France.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Snodland</span> Human settlement in England

Snodland is a town in the borough of Tonbridge and Malling in Kent, England. It lies on the River Medway, between Rochester and Maidstone, and approximately 27 miles (43 km) from central London. At the 2011 Census, it had a population of 10,211.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Tonbridge</span> Market town in Kent, England

Tonbridge is a market town in Kent, England, on the River Medway, 4 miles (6 km) north of Royal Tunbridge Wells, 12 miles (19 km) south west of Maidstone and 29 miles (47 km) south east of London. In the administrative borough of Tonbridge and Malling, it had an estimated population of 41,293 in 2018.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Hadlow</span> Village in Kent, England

Hadlow is a village in the borough of Tonbridge and Malling in Kent, England. It is situated in the Medway valley, north-east of Tonbridge and south-west of Maidstone.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Pembury</span> Human settlement in England

Pembury is a large village in Kent, in the south east of England, with a population of 6,128 at the 2011 Census. It lies just to the north-east of Royal Tunbridge Wells.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Hawkhurst</span> Village in Kent, England

Hawkhurst is village and civil parish in the borough of Tunbridge Wells in Kent, England. The village is located close to the border with East Sussex, around 12 miles (19 km) south-east of Royal Tunbridge Wells and within the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Penshurst</span> Human settlement in England

Penshurst is a historic village and civil parish located in a valley upon the northern slopes of the Kentish Weald, at the confluence of the River Medway and the River Eden, within the Sevenoaks district of Kent, England.

Headcorn is a village and civil parish in the borough of Maidstone in Kent, England. The parish is on the floodplain of the River Beult south east of Maidstone.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Cranbrook, Kent</span> Human settlement in England

Cranbrook is a town in the civil parish of Cranbrook and Sissinghurst, in the Weald of Kent in South East England. It lies roughly half-way between Maidstone and Hastings, about 38 miles (61 km) southeast of central London.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Sutton Valence</span> Human settlement in England

Sutton Valence is a village about five miles (8 km) SE of Maidstone, Kent, England on the A274 road going south to Headcorn and Tenterden. It is on the Greensand Ridge overlooking the Vale of Kent and Weald. St Mary's Church is on the west side of the village on Chart Road, close to the junction of the High Street with the A274. Another landmark is Sutton Valence Castle on the east side of the village, of which only the ruins of the 12th century keep remain, under the ownership of English Heritage.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Maidstone and The Weald (UK Parliament constituency)</span> UK Parliamentary constituency since 1997

Maidstone and The Weald is a constituency in Kent represented in the House of Commons of the UK Parliament since 2010 by Helen Grant of the Conservative Party. She succeeded fellow party member Ann Widdecombe, who had held the seat since it was created for the 1997 general election.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">East Peckham</span> Village and parish in Kent, England

East Peckham is a village and civil parish in Kent, England on the River Medway. The parish covers the main village as well as Hale Street and Beltring.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Hucking</span> Hamlet in Kent, England

Hucking is a small hamlet and civil parish in the Maidstone District of Kent, England. It is located 4 miles (6.4 km) north-east of Maidstone and 5 miles (8.0 km) south-west of Sittingbourne. The parish is governed by a parish meeting.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Rolvenden Layne</span> Hamlet in Kent, England

Rolvenden Layne is a hamlet within the civil parish of Rolvenden in the Ashford District of Kent, England. It is located approximately one mile (1.6 km) south of Rolvenden, with a public house, the Ewe & Lamb.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wateringbury</span> Human settlement in England

Wateringbury is a village and civil parish near the town of Maidstone in Kent, England. The Wateringbury Stream flows into the River Medway just above Bow Bridge. It formerly powered three watermills in the village, one of which survives. The Wateringbury railway station is on the Medway Valley Line.

Iden Green is a small village, near Benenden, in the county of Kent. It belongs to the civil parish of Benenden and the Tunbridge Wells Borough District of Kent, in the South East of England.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Cranbrook Strict Baptist Chapel</span> Church in Kent, United Kingdom

The Cranbrook Strict Baptist Chapel, is a Strict Baptist place of worship in the town of Cranbrook in the English county of Kent. The chapel was built in 1787.

References

  1. "Staplehurst CP". Neighbourhood Statistics. Retrieved 20 August 2007.
  2. "Civil Parish population 2011". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 16 September 2016.
  3. "History of Staplehurst - Kent Past". www.kentpast.co.uk. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  4. Thompson, Anita. "A brief history of Staplehurst" (PDF). Staplehurst Society. Retrieved 9 December 2020.
  5. Stuff, Good. "Loddenden Manor, Tonbridge, Kent". britishlistedbuildings.co.uk. Retrieved 9 December 2020.
  6. Dearn, T. D. W. (1814). An Historical, Topographical and Descriptive Account of the Weald of Kent. Cranbrook: S. Reader. p.  225.
  7. Accident at Staplehurst on 9 June 1865, Railways Archive
  8. PDF, Post Traumatic Culture, Injury and Interpretations in the Nineties, Kirby Farrell, JHU Press, 1998. P.8 [ permanent dead link ]
  9. Eyewitness: Charles Dickens survives a train crash 1865, My Time Machine Archived 4 September 2012 at archive.today
  10. Staplehurst, Information Britain
  11. Police scour Kent farm for clues to £53m robbery as gang's lorry traced, Rosie Cowen, The Guardian, 01-03-06
  12. Securitas robbery: The investigation, BBC Website, 28-01-08
  13. THE STAPLEHURST SOCIETY HISTORY GROUP. "STAPLEHURST IN KENT" (PDF). THE STAPLEHURST SOCIETY HISTORY GROUP. Retrieved 22 January 2014.
  14. Transactions of the Congregational Historical Society Vol. 5. Congregational Historical Society. 1911. pp. 178–180.
  15. "History" . Retrieved 22 January 2014.
  16. "Staplehurst School". Archived from the original on 21 November 2008. Retrieved 18 February 2011.
  17. "New factory for Magnetic Shields". Kent Online. 24 September 2020. Retrieved 9 December 2020.
  18. English Wine Producers. Retrieved 26 July 2017.