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Farningham Castle

In the civil parish of Farningham.
In the historic county of Kent.
Modern Authority of Kent.
1974 county of Kent.
Medieval County of Kent.

OS Map Grid Reference: TQ54736706
Latitude 51.38150° Longitude 0.22205°

Farningham Castle has been described as a certain Fortified Manor House.

There are no visible remains.


In 1740 William Hanger built a new house on the site of the old manor-house of Farningham but it was burnt down before it was finished and was never rebuilt. He moved to a house on the opposite side of the road - the present manor-house. The site of the medieval and 1740 manor-house is still to be seen at TQ 5473 6706 and comprises a large building platform together with a moat, now dry. The moat has suffered some mutilation on the NE side, otherwise it is in fair condition. No evidence of any feature in this field. I learned locally that archaeological excavations had taken place here about 2 years ago. In 1972 a sewer pipe was being laid outwhen the line cut through the N side of a mound and revealed not only the presumed medieval and post-medieval manor houses but also the curtain wall and moat relating to the hitherto unknown Farningham Castle. In 1973 a joint excavation programme was undertaken by the Kent Archaeological Rescue Unit and the Darent Valley Archaeological Training School. The excavation concentrated on the SW corner of the mound and the moat, filled with mud silt. The curtain wall, 5 feet thick and 7 feet high, rested on massive sandstone boulders and probably dates to the C13 or C14. The C16 brick manor house had been constructed on top of the curtain wall and later boundary walls added. (Kent HER)

The C.I.B. Archaeological Rescue Corps discovered the site of the castle on the E. bank of the R. Darent. A flint curtain-wall, 14 ft. wide and 50 ft. long, and on the S. a related moat, 40 ft. wide and 10 ft. deep, were found. (Med. Arch., 1973)

Quite where the 'castle' name comes from is unclear. The manor was 'held of Dover-castle, by castle-guard rent, and was esteemed as one knight's fee' (Hasted) and some other such manors have been misinterpreted as having castles but the name may just be the fancy of the 1970's excavators.
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:19:31

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