Charles John Huffam Dickens was born in Portsmouth on the 7th of February 1812 to John and Elizabeth Dickens, the 2nd of 8 children. Dickens was so inspired by what he found in Kent that he returned here for the last years of his life. Many people and places in his novels have Kentish roots. Dickens purchased Gads Hill Place, an imposing house in Higham that sits on the main road opposite to the Sir John Falstaff pub.
The marshland around this area lent itself to the vivid opening of Great Expectations. Part of this walk takes you around the edge of the marshland as well as through pretty country lanes, open fields and restricted bye ways and includes places & landmarks that Dickens would have known well.
Dickens was a dedicated walker. 12 miles was an average daily walk. He would walk in all weathers, turning ideas over in his mind.
This walk is located within easy distance of historic Rochester, which had held much inspiration for Dickens. There is a memorial to Dickens in Rochester Cathedral, as well as several annual festivals including the Dickens festival and Dickensian Christmas. If you fancy an introductory tour of Rochester, a feast of fine architecture walk will be just the ticket!