Maidstone's Forgotten War Dead Remembered At Last


A memorial was unveiled in Brenchley Gardens on 1st June, 369 years to the day and on the precise spot of the last action of the Battle of Maidstone.

This pivotal English Civil War battle saw its opening Parliamentarian probing attacks fought on the fringes of Maidstone at East Farleigh Bridge and then Penenden Heath, followed by brutal urban warfare fought street to street and house to house through the town centre, towards Gabriel's Hill, before a desperate Royalist last stand and break-out from St Faith's Churchyard (now part of Brenchley Gardens).



 

The consequences of the Battle of Maidstone and wider Kentish rebellion were profound, with Maidstone losing one of its then two MPs as punishment for its rebellious ways - thus eroding its status and the patronage formerly enjoyed by the County Town. The Kentish rebellion also added to the charge sheet accusing the king of ‘treason’ which eventually led to Parliament’s killing of Charles 1st in 1649.

Tony Harwood conceived the project some years ago and achieved funding through a successful project fund bid. The craftsmanship of fellow Maidstone Councillor Gordon Newton and his colleagues (some in China!) has made the long-held aspiration to provide a permanent memorial to all those who lost their lives in the Battle of Maidstone a reality.


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