Penshurst

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Coordinates: 51°10′13″N 0°10′48″E / 51.17041°N 0.17997°E / 51.17041; 0.17997

Penshurst
Penshurst is located in Kent
Penshurst
Penshurst
 Penshurst shown within Kent
Population 1,479 
OS grid reference TQ525435
Civil parish Penshurst
District Sevenoaks
Shire county Kent
Region South East
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town Tonbridge
Postcode district TN
Police Kent
Fire Kent
Ambulance South East Coast
EU Parliament South East England
UK Parliament Tonbridge and Malling
List of places
UK
England
Kent

Penshurst is a village and civil parish in the Sevenoaks district of Kent, England. The parish is located on the northern slopes of the Weald, west of Tonbridge. Within the parish boundaries are the two villages of Penshurst and Fordcombe, with a combined population of some 1,479 persons.[1] The majority of the parish is in the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The parish church, dedicated to St John the Baptist, is one of the two churches in the civil parish.

Penshurst village is located some 4 miles (6.4 km) west of Tonbridge and 6 miles (9.7 km) south of Sevenoaks. It lies in a valley near the confluence of two rivers, the Medway and the Eden. To the south of the village, within the parish, are the settlements of Saint's Hill and Smart's Hill.

The village grew up around Penshurst Place, the ancestral home of the Sidney family. There are many Tudor-looking buildings in the village, although some are Victorian. Henry Stafford the first Baron Stafford was born here in 1501. There is also a vineyard nearby.

The Leicester Arms, once part of the Penshurst Estate, was owned by Sir William Sidney, grandfather of poet and statesman Sir Philip Sidney. His other grandson, the Viscount De L’isle, was appointed Earl of Leicester in 1618 and it was shortly after this that The Leicester Arms, formerly known as The Porcupine, was renamed in his honour. The pub and hotel is now owned privately.

Penshurst railway station, on the Tonbridge to Redhill railway line, is some 2 miles (3.2 km) north of the village, at the hamlet of Chiddingstone Causeway. Penshurst Airfield was located close to the station, but within the parish of Leigh. It opened in 1916 as a military airfield, and served as a civil airfield from 1919-36. It was reopened as RAF Penshurst in 1940, and closed in 1946.

Penshurst Place[edit]

Main article: Penshurst Place

Penshurst Place is a mansion built in 1341 and is the ancestral home of the Sidney family. The house and gardens are open to public viewing. The banqueting hall at Penshurst Place has been used as a filming location for the Hollywood films The Other Boleyn Girl and The Princess Bride as well as the BBC television series Merlin.[2][3]

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