Culture & Heritage tags

Kent is known for many things, but mining is not one that would immediately spring to mind. Kent’s mining heritage dates back to 1890 when coal and iron ore were first discovered in the county. Learn how miners moved their families from the north of the country to build communities in Kent and whose children and grandchildren live here to this day. Take a trip on the East Kent Railway, once a thriving industrial line serving Kent Coalfield, then walk on the North Downs Way through mining towns to see ‘After the Black Gold’ artwork, celebrating Woolage’s mining heritage.

  • Bekesbourne

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Mining Kent – discover the lesser known story of mining Kent as you travel the paths of miners from a bygone era

Kent is known for many things, but mining is not one that would immediately spring to mind. Kent’s mining heritage dates back to 1890 when coal and iron ore were first discovered in the county. Learn how miners moved their families from the north of the country to build communities in Kent and whose children and grandchildren live here to this day. Take a trip on the East Kent Railway, once a thriving industrial line serving Kent Coalfield, then walk on the North Downs Way through mining towns to see ‘After the Black Gold’ artwork, celebrating Woolage’s mining heritage.

East Kent Railway train at station
AMCulture & Heritage

East Kent Railway round trip, Shepherdswell

This is your chance to experience train travel from 1916! This scenic four-mile round trip takes in rolling countryside, steep chalk-lined cuttings and the fascinating Golgotha Tunnel.

The train only runs on a Sunday in the spring and winter months. The station cafe open all year from Tuesday to Sunday.

East Kent Railway
East Kent Railway cafe
LunchFood & DrinkPlaces to Eat

East Kent Railway Café or The Bell Inn, Shepherdswell

Eythorne tearoom offers a pitstop amongst Kent’s mining history, run by the trust and volunteers. The café was originally a Southern Region Scenery Van used to carry Elephants! The café is open weekends and train operating days only.

At Shepherdswell there is the splendid Colonel’s Café, named after the iconic railway engineer Colonel Holman F Stephens. Open Tuesday to Sunday.

The Bell Inn is a traditional country pub with a welcoming atmosphere, beamed ceilings and wooden floors. The pub offers snacks, such as pork pies, ploughman’s & pasties, which can be eaten in or as a take-away.

Eythorne Station cafeThe Bell Inn
North Downs Way Sign
PMWalking

Walk the North Downs Way National Trail from Shepherdswell

Walk The North Downs Way National Trail from Shepherdswell to Bekesbourne, or further on to Canterbury. Stop off in Woolage to see ‘After the Black Gold’ art installation. Moderate walk due to length.

North Downs Walk, Shepherdswell to Canterbury
The Lydden Bell pub
Dinner/TeaFood & DrinkPlaces to Eat

The Lydden Bell or The Evenhill

The Lydden Bell, in  offers pub classics and modern innovate dishes. A wide range of daught beers, ciders and locally brewed real ales.

The Evenhill is in Littlebourne, a 30 minute walk from Bekesbourne. This 16th century Inn offers classic British dishes, such as pie of the day, homemade beef burger and falafel & bean burger.

The Lydden Bell The Evenhill
Woolton Farm bedroom
Accommodation OptionsPlaces to Stay

The Lydden Bell B&B or Woolton Farm cottages

The Lydden Bell B&B, is set in the rural village of Lydden. Converted from a grade 2 listed barn, it offers modern facilities and comfortable beds that are all with en-suite.

Woolton Farm is in Bekesbourne. You can choose to stay in cottages, a bell tent or bring your own tent for a stay under the Kentish stars!

The Lydden Bell B&BWoolton Farm Cottages

Travel

Train – All of the towns and villages mentioned are served by train stations.

Bus – The Canterbury to Dover bus service, stops in the villages mentioned.

Parking is available, in most of the villages, for free.

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