|Penshurst shown within Kent|
|Population||1,628 (2011 Census)|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Ambulance||South East Coast|
|EU Parliament||South East England|
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, increasing to 1,628 at the 2011 Census. The majority of the parish is in the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
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.
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.
The listed country house and gardens of Swaylands are on the outskirts of the village.
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.
St John the Baptist Church
The parish church, dedicated to St John the Baptist, is one of the two churches in the civil parish. The Grade I listed church houses many memorials and tombs, including those of a Viceroy of India, two Field Marshals and two winners of the Victoria Cross.
- The Sidney family of Penshurst Place, including
- The Hardinge family, including
- George Drummond of Drummonds Bank
- Sandy Gall, a former ITN newscaster
- "Civil Parish population 2011". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 18 September 2016.
- Office for National Statistics : Census 2001 : Parish Headcounts : Sevenoaks Retrieved 2009-11-15
- Film locations
- BBC Merlin filming locations
- St John the Baptist, Penshurst: History, accessed 22 July 2015
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