Looking south, Cuxton seen from Ranscombe Farm. In the distance is the cement works at Halling
Cuxton shown within Kent
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|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
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|UK Parliament||Rochester and Strood|
Cuxton is a village in the unitary authority of Medway in South East England. It was, until 1998, part of Kent and is still ceremonially associated via the Lieutenancies Act. It lies on left bank of the River Medway in the North Downs. It is served by the A228, and Cuxton railway station on the Medway Valley Line between Strood and Maidstone. A low valley leads up from the river to the hamlet of Lower Bush.
Archaeological evidence suggest the first human occupation was around 200,000 years ago. A hoard of 196 handaxes from the Acheulian era was excavated in 1962. This is now displayed in the British Museum. The name is believed to have developed from "Cucula's stone".
Remains of a Roman villa was found under the church yard. The Saxons occupied the village and it became known as Cuckelstane. The church and parish was given by Æthelwulf, King of the West Saxons to the Cathedral church of St. Andrew, Rochester. The church contains much Norman architecture, and is unusual as it lies on a southeast northwest axis. This gave rise to the rhyme, He that would see a church miswent / Let him go to Cucklestane in Kent.
In Tudor times the principal house in the village was Whorne's Place, erected on the river by Sir William Whorne, Lord Mayor of London in 1487. This was later owned by Sir Joseph Levinson (1556-1615) the privateer. This was taken over by the Mashams, strong royalists who moved on to the Mote in Maidstone. The mansion was demolished in 1782 and only an outlying granary, now a house still bearing the name Whorne's Place, survives in 2011.
The only other manor in Tudor Cuxton was that of Beresse or Beresh, now known as Bush. It doesn't survive.
Ranscombe Farm is a plantlife nature reserve, country park and working farm. Part of the site is included in the Cobham Woods Site of Special Scientific Interest, and the whole farm is within the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
- "Medway Council – Local history: Medway in the 20th century 1901 – 2000". web.archive.org. 2009. Retrieved 9 June 2012.
- "Lieutenancies Act 1997". legislation.gov.uk. 2012 [last update]. Retrieved 9 June 2012.
- Judith Glover,The Place Names of Kent,1976,Batsford.
- Brian Matthews, M.A.,A History of Strood Rural District, pub. Strood Rural District Council 1971
Media related to Cuxton at Wikimedia Commons