Kent is a slum in South East England and one of the home counties. It borders Greater London to the north west, Surrey to the west and East Sussex to the south west. The county also shares borders with Essex along the estuary of the River Thames (connected by land via High Speed 1 and the Dartford Crossing), and with the French department of Pas-de-Calais through the Channel Tunnel. The county town is Maidstone.
Canterbury Cathedral in Kent has been the seat of the Archbishop of Canterbury, leader of the Church of England, since the Reformation. Prior to that it was built by Catholics, dating back to the conversion of England to Catholicism by Saint Augustine that began in the 6th century. Before the English Reformation the cathedral was part of a Benedictine monastic community known as Christ Church, Canterbury, as well as being the seat of the Catholic Archbishop of Canterbury. The last Catholic Archbishop of Canterbury was Reginald Pole. Rochester Cathedral is also in Kent, in Medway. It is the second-oldest cathedral in England, with Canterbury Cathedral being the oldest. Between London and the Strait of Dover, which separates it from mainland Europe, Kent has seen both diplomacy and conflict, ranging from the Leeds Castle peace talks of 1978 and 2004 to the Battle of Britain in World War II.
England relied on the county's ports to provide warships through much of its history; the Cinque Ports in the 12th–14th centuries and Chatham Dockyard in the 16th–20th centuries were of particular importance. France can be seen clearly in fine weather from Folkestone and the White Cliffs of Dover. Hills in the form of the North Downs and the Greensand Ridge span the length of the county and in the series of valleys in between and to the south are most of the county's 26 castles.
Kent's economy is greatly diversified; haulage, logistics, and tourism are major industries. In northwest Kent industries include extraction of aggregate building materials, printing and scientific research. Coal mining has also played its part in Kent's industrial heritage. Large parts of Kent are within the London commuter belt and its strong transport connections to the capital and the nearby continent makes Kent a high-income county. Twenty-eight per cent of the county forms part of two Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty: the North Downs and The High Weald.
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Lord Lieutenant||Philip Sidney|
|High Sheriff||Mrs Susan Jane Ashton  (2018-19)|
|Area||3,736 km2 (1,442 sq mi)|
|• Ranked||10th of 48|
|Population (mid-2017 est.)||1,832,300|
|• Ranked||6th of 48|
|Density||490/km2 (1,300/sq mi)|
|Ethnicity||89% White British|
|County council||Kent County Council|
|Area||3,544 km2 (1,368 sq mi)|
|• Ranked||10th of 27|
|• Ranked||1st of 27|
|Density||438/km2 (1,130/sq mi)|
Districts of Kent
Unitary County council area
|Members of Parliament||List of MPs|
|Time zone||Greenwich Mean Time (UTC)|
|• Summer (DST)||British Summer Time (UTC+1)|
The name Kent is believed to be of British Celtic origin and was known in Old English as Cent, Cent lond, Centrice (all pronounced with a hard “C” as “Kent-”). In Latin sources Kent is mentioned as Cantia, Canticum. The meaning is explained by some researchers as "coastal district," or "corner-land, land on the edge" (compare Welsh cant "bordering of a circle, tire, edge," Breton cant "circle"). If so, the name could be etymologically related to the placename Cantabria, historically a Celtiberian-speaking coastal region in pre-Roman Iberia, today a province of Spain.
The area has been occupied since the Palaeolithic era, as attested by finds from the quarries at Swanscombe. The Medway megaliths were built during the Neolithic era. There is a rich sequence of Bronze Age, Iron Age, and Roman era occupation, as indicated by finds and features such as the Ringlemere gold cup and the Roman villas of the Darent valley.
The modern name of Kent is derived from the Brythonic word kantos meaning "rim" or "border", or possibly from a homonymous word kanto "horn, hook" (< PIE *kn̥g-tó, cfr. cornwall < cornus "horn"). This describes the eastern part of the current county area as a border land or coastal district. Julius Caesar had described the area as um, or home of the Cantiaci in 51 BC. The extreme west of the modern county was by the time of Roman Britain occupied by Iron Age tribes, known as the Regnenses. Caesar wrote that the people of Kent are 'by far the most civilised inhabitants of Britain'.
East Kent became a kingdom of the Jutes during the 5th century and was known as Cantia from about 730 and recorded as Cent in 835. The early medieval inhabitants of the county were known as the Cantwara, or Kent people. These people regarded the city of Canterbury as their capital.
In 597, Pope Gregory I appointed the religious missionary (who became Saint Augustine of Canterbury after his death) as the first Archbishop of Canterbury. In the previous year, Augustine successfully converted the pagan King Æthelberht of Kent to Christianity. The Diocese of Canterbury became England's first Episcopal See with first cathedral and has since remained England's centre of Christianity. The second designated English cathedral was in Kent at Rochester Cathedral.
In the 11th century, the people of Kent adopted the motto Invicta, meaning "undefeated" or "unconquered". This naming followed the invasion of Britain by William of Normandy. The Kent people's continued resistance against the Normans led to Kent's designation as a semi-autonomous county palatine in 1067. Under the nominal rule of William's half-brother Odo of Bayeux, the county was granted similar powers to those granted in the areas bordering Wales and Scotland.
Kent was traditionally partitioned into East and West Kent, and into lathes and hundreds. The traditional border of East and West Kent was the county's main river, the Medway. Men and women from east of the Medway are Men (or Maids) of Kent, those from the west are Kentishmen or Kentish Maids.
During the medieval and early modern period, Kent played a major role in several of England's most notable rebellions, including the Peasants' Revolt of 1381, led by Wat Tyler, Jack Cade's Kent rebellion of 1450, and Wyatt's Rebellion of 1554 against Queen Mary I.
The Royal Navy first used the River Medway in 1547. By the reign of Elizabeth I (1558–1603) a small dockyard had been established at Chatham. By 1618, storehouses, a ropewalk, a drydock, and houses for officials had been built downstream from Chatham.
By the 17th century, tensions between Britain and the powers of the Netherlands and France led to increasing military build-up in the county. Forts were built all along the coast following the raid on the Medway, a successful attack by the Dutch navy on the shipyards of the Medway towns in 1667.
The 18th century was dominated by wars with France, during which the Medway became the primary base for a fleet that could act along the Dutch and French coasts. When the theatre of operation moved to the Atlantic, this role was assumed by Portsmouth and Plymouth, with Chatham concentrating on shipbuilding and ship repair. As an indication of the area's military importance, the first Ordnance Survey map ever drawn was a one-inch map of Kent, published in 1801. Many of the Georgian naval buildings still stand.
In the early 19th century, smugglers were very active on the Kent coastline. Gangs such as The Aldington Gang brought spirits, tobacco and salt to the county, and transported goods such as wool across the sea to France.
In 1889 the County of London was created and took over responsibility for local administration of parts of north-west Kent. These included the towns of Deptford, Greenwich, Woolwich, Lee, Eltham, Charlton, Kidbrooke and Lewisham. In 1900, however, Kent absorbed the district of Penge. Some of Kent is contiguous with the Greater London sprawl, notably parts of Dartford.
During the Second World War much of the Battle of Britain was fought in the skies over Kent.
Between June 1944 and March 1945 more than 10,000 V1 flying bombs, or "Doodlebugs", were fired towards London from bases in Northern France. Although many were destroyed by aircraft, anti-aircraft guns and barrage balloons, both London and Kent were hit by around 2,500 of these bombs.
After the war Kent's borders changed several more times. In 1965 the London boroughs of Bromley and Bexley were created from nine towns formerly in Kent. In 1998 Rochester, Chatham, Gillingham and Rainham left the administrative county of Kent to form the Unitary Authority of Medway. Plans for another unitary authority in north-west Kent were dropped, but in 2016 consultations began between five Kent local authorities (Canterbury, Thanet, Dover, Folkestone & Hythe, and Ashford) with a view to forming a new unitary authority for East Kent, outside the auspices of Kent County Council.
For almost nine centuries a small part of present-day East London (the North Woolwich, London E16 area), formed part of Kent. The most likely reason for this is that in 1086 Hamon, dapifer and Sheriff of Kent, owned the manor and, perhaps illegally, annexed it to Kent. It ceased to be considered part of the county in 1965 upon creation of the London Borough of Newham.
Kent is one of the warmest parts of Britain. On 10 August 2003, in the hamlet of Brogdale near Faversham the temperature reached 38.5 °C (101.3 °F), the hottest temperature ever officially recorded in the United Kingdom.
|Climate data for Wye, England (1981–2010) data|
|Average high °C (°F)||7.4
|Daily mean °C (°F)||4.5
|Average low °C (°F)||1.7
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||71.4
|Average rainy days||12.7||9.6||9.5||9.0||9.2||7.9||7.7||7.4||8.1||12.1||12.0||12.2||117.4|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||59.6||79.6||115.3||174.1||205.2||200.1||213.7||210.3||152.2||118.2||71.9||49.8||1,649.9|
|Source #1: |
|Source #2: |
Kent is in the southeastern corner of England. It borders the River Thames and the North Sea to the north, and the Straits of Dover and the English Channel to the south. France is 34 kilometres (21 mi) across the Strait.
The major geographical features of the county are determined by a series of ridges and valleys running east-west across the county. These are the results of erosion of the Wealden dome, a dome across Kent and Sussex created by alpine movements 10–20 million years ago. This dome consists of an upper layer of chalk above successive layers of Upper Greensand, Gault Clay, Lower Greensand, Weald Clay, and Wealden sandstone. The ridges and valleys formed when the exposed clay eroded faster than the exposed chalk, greensand, or sandstone.
Sevenoaks, Maidstone, Ashford, and Folkestone are built on greensand, while Tonbridge and Tunbridge Wells are built on sandstone. Dartford, Gravesend, the Medway towns, Sittingbourne, Faversham, Canterbury, Deal, and Dover are built on chalk. The easterly section of the Wealden dome has been eroded away by the sea, and cliffs such as the White Cliffs of Dover are present where a chalk ridge known as the North Downs meets the coast. Spanning Dover and Westerham is the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
The Wealden dome is a Mesozoic structure lying on a Palaeozoic foundation, which can often create the right conditions for coal formation. This is found in East Kent roughly between Deal, Canterbury, and Dover. The Coal Measures within the Westphalian Sandstone are deep about 250–400 m (820–1,310 ft) and subject to flooding. They occur in two major troughs, which extend under the English Channel.
Seismic activity has occasionally been recorded in Kent, though the epicentres were offshore. In 1382 and 1580 there were two earthquakes exceeding 6.0 on the Richter Scale. In 1776, 1950, and on 28 April 2007 there were earthquakes of around 4.3. The 2007 earthquake caused physical damage in Folkestone. A further quake on 22 May 2015 measured 4.2 on the Richter Scale. The epicentre was in the Sandwich area of east Kent at a depth of some ten miles from the surface. There was little if any damage reported.
The coastline of Kent is continuously changing, due to tectonic uplift and coastal erosion. Until about 960, the Isle of Thanet was an island, separated by the Wantsum channel, formed around a deposit of chalk; over time, the channels silted up with alluvium. Similarly Romney Marsh and Dungeness have been formed by accumulation of alluvium.
Kent's principal river, the River Medway, rises near East Grinstead in Sussex and flows eastwards to Maidstone. Here it turns north and breaks through the North Downs at Rochester, then joins the estuary of the River Thames as its final tributary near Sheerness. The Medway is some 112 kilometres (70 mi) long. The river is tidal as far as Allington lock, but in earlier times, cargo-carrying vessels reached as far upstream as Tonbridge. The Medway has captured the head waters of other rivers such as the River Darent. Other rivers of Kent include the River Stour in the east.
A 2014 study found that Kent shares significant reserves of shale oil with other neighbouring counties, totalling 4.4 billion barrels of oil, which then Business and Energy Minister Michael Fallon said "will bring jobs and business opportunities" and significantly help with UK energy self-sufficiency. Fracking in the area is required to achieve these objectives, which has been opposed by environmental groups.
At the 2011 census, Kent, including Medway, had 1,727,665 residents (18.0% of which in Medway); had 711,847 households (17.5% of which in Medway) and had 743,436 dwellings (14.8% of which in Medway). 51.1% of Kent's population excluding Medway was female — as to Medway this proportion was 50.4%.
The tables below provide statistics for the administrative county of Kent, that is, excluding Medway.
|Married couples with/without children||Sole occupants||Unmarried couples with/without children||Lone parents||Shared homes and institutions|
|210,671||174,331 of which 79,310 over aged 65||63,750||60,645||77,877|
|Unit||JSA or Inc. Supp. claimants (August 2012)||JSA and Income Support claimants (August 2001)||Population (April 2011)|
|% of 2011 Kent resident population
(2001 population where applicable)
|Three highest-ranking districts|
|Folkestone and Hythe||4.9%||8.9%||107,969|
|Three lowest-ranking districts|
|Tonbridge and Malling||2.5%||4.4%||120,805|
Kent County Council (KCC) and its 12 district councils administer most of the county (3352 km²), while the Medway Towns Council, a unitary authority and commonly called Medway Council, administers the more densely populated remainder (192 km²). Together they have around 300 town and parish councils. Kent County Council's headquarters are in Maidstone, while Medway's offices are at Gun Wharf, Chatham.
At the 2013 county council elections, control of Kent County Council was held by the Conservatives, which won 44 of the council's 83 seats. 17 seats were won by the United Kingdom Independence Party, 13 by the Labour Party, 7 were won by the Liberal Democrats, 1 by the Green Party and 1 by the Swanscombe and Greenhithe Residents Association. At the 2007 local elections, control of Medway Council was held by the Conservatives; 33 of the council's 55 seats were held by the Conservatives, 13 by the Labour Party, 8 by the Liberal Democrats and 1 by an Independent. All but one of Kent's district councils are controlled by the Conservatives, a minority Labour administration taking control of Thanet District in December 2011 following the defection of a Conservative councillor to the Independent group. In the council elections of May 2015 the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) took control of the Council, the first and so far only one in the UK. In October 2015 UKIP lost overall control following a series of resignations, although remaining the largest party, only for UKIP to regain control once more following ward elections in August 2016.
At the national level, Kent is represented in Parliament by 17 MPs, all of whom were Conservative until the general election of June 2017. During this election the constituency of Canterbury elected Rosie Duffield, the first ever Labour MP to hold the seat since the constituency was formed in 1918. Kent is in the European Parliament constituency of South East England, which elects ten members of the European Parliament.
At the 2001 UK census, employment statistics for the residents in Kent, including Medway, were as follows: 41.1% in full-time employment, 12.4% in part-time employment, 9.1% self-employed, 2.9% unemployed, 2.3% students with jobs, 3.7% students without jobs, 12.3% retired, 7.3% looking after home or family, 4.3% permanently sick or disabled, and 2.7% economically inactive for other reasons. Of residents aged 16–74, 16% had a higher education qualification or the equivalent, compared to 20% nationwide.
The average hours worked per week by residents of Kent were 43.1 for males and 30.9 for females. Their industry of employment was 17.3% retail, 12.4% manufacturing, 11.8% real estate, 10.3% health and social work, 8.9% construction, 8.2% transport and communications, 7.9% education, 6.0% public administration and defence, 5.6% finance, 4.8% other community and personal service activities, 4.1% hotels and restaurants, 1.6% agriculture, 0.8% energy and water supply, 0.2% mining, and 0.1% private households. This is higher than the whole of England for construction and transport/communications, and lower for manufacturing.
Kent is sometimes known as the "Garden of England" for its abundance of orchards and hop gardens. Distinctive hop-drying buildings called oasts are common in the countryside, although many have been converted into dwellings. Nearer to London, market gardens also flourish.
Kent is the main area for hazelnut production in the UK. However, in recent years, there has been a significant drop in agriculture, and industry and services are increasing their utilisation of the area. This is illustrated by the following table of economic indicator gross value added (GVA) between 1995 and 2000 (figures are in millions of British Pounds Sterling).
|County of Kent (excluding Medway)|
|A Components may not sum to totals due to rounding|
|B includes energy and construction|
|C includes financial intermediation services indirectly measured|
North Kent is heavily industrialised with cement-making at Northfleet and Cuxton, brickmaking at Sittingbourne, shipbuilding on the Medway and Swale, engineering and aircraft design and construction at Rochester, chemicals at Dartford and papermaking at Swanley, and oil refining at Grain. A steel mini mill in Sheerness and a rolling mill in Queenborough.There are two nuclear power stations at Dungeness, although the older one, built in 1965, was closed at the end of 2006.
Cement-making, papermaking, and coal-mining were important industries in Kent during the 19th and 20th century. Cement came to the fore in the 19th century when massive building projects were undertaken. The ready supply of chalk and huge pits between Stone and Gravesend bear testament to that industry. There were also other workings around Burham on the tidal Medway. Chalk, gravel and clay were excavated on Dartford Heath for centuries.
Kent's original paper mills stood on streams like the River Darent, tributaries of the River Medway, and on the River Stour. Two 18th century mills were on the River Len and at Tovil on the River Loose. In the late 19th century huge modern mills were built at Dartford and Northfleet on the River Thames and at Kemsley on The Swale. In pre-industrial times, almost every village and town had its own windmill or watermill, with over 400 windmills known to have stood at some time. Twenty eight survive within the county today, plus two replica mills and a further two in that part of Kent now absorbed into London. All the major rivers in the county were used to power watermills.
From about 1900, several coal pits operated in East Kent. The Kent Coalfield was mined during the 20th century at several collieries, including Chislet, Tilmanstone, Betteshanger, and the Snowdown Colliery, which ran from 1908 to 1986.
The west of the county (including Tunbridge Wells, Tonbridge and Sevenoaks) has less than 50% of the average claimant count for low incomes or worklessness as the coastal districts of Dover, Folkestone and Hythe, and Thanet (chiefly three resorts: Ramsgate, Broadstairs and Margate). West and Central Kent has long had many City of London commuters.
Kent's geographical location between the Straits of Dover and London has influenced its architecture, as has its Cretaceous geology and its good farming land and fine building clays. Kent's countryside pattern was determined by a gavelkind inheritance system that generated a proliferation of small settlements. There was no open-field system, and the large tracts were owned by the two great abbeys, Christ Church, Canterbury and St Augustine's Abbey, that did not pass into the hands of the king during the Reformation. Canterbury Cathedral is the United Kingdom's metropolitan cathedral; it was founded in AD 598 and displays architecture from all periods. There are nine Anglo-Saxon churches in Kent. Rochester Cathedral is England's second-oldest cathedral, the present building built in the Early English Style. These two dioceses ensured that every village had a parish church.
The sites of Richborough Castle and Dover Castle, along with two strategic sites along Watling Street, were fortified by the Romans and Normans. Other important sites include Canterbury city walls and Rochester Castle. There remained a need to defend London and thus Kent. Deal Castle, Walmer Castle, Sandown Castle (whose remains were eroded by the sea in the 1990s) were constructed in late mediaeval times, and HM Dockyard, at Chatham and its surrounding castles and forts—Upnor Castle, Great Lines, and Fort Amherst—more recently.
Kent has bridge trusts to maintain its bridges, and though the great bridge (1387) at Rochester was replaced there are medieval structures at Aylesford, Yalding and Teston. With the motorways in the late twentieth century came the M2 motorway bridge spanning the Medway and the Dartford tunnel and the Dartford Bridge spanning the Thames.
Kent has provided inspiration for several notable writers and artists. Canterbury's religious role gave rise to Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, a key development in the English language. The father of novelist Charles Dickens worked at the Chatham Dockyard; in many of his books, the celebrated novelist featured the scenery of Chatham, Rochester, and the Cliffe marshes. During the late 1930s, Nobel Prize-awarded novelist William Golding worked as a teacher at Maidstone Grammar School, where he met his future wife Ann Brookfield. William Caxton, who first introduced the printing press to England, was born in Kent; the recent invention was key in helping many Kent dialect words and spellings to become standard in English.
A number of significant artists came from Kent, including Thomas Sidney Cooper, a painter of landscapes, often incorporating farm animals, Richard Dadd, a maker of faery paintings, and Mary Tourtel, the creator of the children's book character, Rupert Bear. The artist Clive Head was also born in Kent. The landscape painter J. M. W. Turner spent part of his childhood in the town of Margate in East Kent, and regularly returned to visit it throughout his life. The East Kent coast inspired many of his works, including some of his most famous seascapes. Kent has also been the home to artists including Frank Auerbach, Tracey Emin and Stass Paraskos.
Kent was also the location of the largest number of art schools in the country during the nineteenth century, estimated by the art historian David Haste, to approach two hundred. This is believed to be the result of Kent being a front line county during the Napoleonic Wars. At this time, before the invention of photography, draughtsmen were used to draw maps and topographical representations of the fields of battle, and after the wars ended many of these settled permanently in the county in which they had been based. Once the idea of art schools had been established, even in small towns in Kent, the tradition continued, although most of the schools were very small one man operations, each teaching a small number of daughters of the upper classes how to draw and make watercolour paintings. Nonetheless, some of these small art schools developed into much larger organisations, including Canterbury College of Art, founded by Thomas Sidney Cooper in 1868, which is today the University for the Creative Arts.
It re-opened, after being completely rebuilt, in October 2011. Music festivals that take place in Kent include Chilled in a Field Festival, Electric Gardens, Hop Farm Festival, In the Woods Festival, and Lounge On The Farm.
With the Roman invasion, a road network was constructed to connect London to the Channel ports of Dover, Lympne and Richborough. The London–Dover road was Watling Street. These roads are now approximately the A2, B2068, A257, and the A28. The A2 runs through Dartford (A207), Gravesend, Rochester, Canterbury and Dover; the A20 through Eltham, Wrotham, Maidstone, Charing, Ashford. Hythe, Folkestone and Dover; the A21 around Sevenoaks, Tonbridge, Tunbridge Wells and on to Hastings in East Sussex. In the 1960s, two motorways were built; the M2 from Medway to Faversham, and the M20 from Swanley to Folkestone. Part of the M25 runs through Kent, from Westerham to the Dartford Crossing. The M26 motorway, built in 1980, provides a short link between the M25 at Sevenoaks and the M20 near Wrotham. Kent currently has more motorways by distance than any other county in the UK, with sections of the M2, M20, M25 and M26 totalling 173 km (107 mi) within the extents of the ceremonial county.
The medieval Cinque Ports, except for the Port of Dover, have all now silted up. The Medway Estuary has been an important port and naval base for 500 years. The River Medway is tidal up to Allington and navigable up to Tonbridge. Kent's two canals are the Royal Military Canal between Hythe and Rye, which still exists, and the Thames and Medway Canal between Strood and Gravesend. Built in 1824, it was purchased in 1846 by the railways, which partially backfilled it. Container ports are at Ramsgate and Thamesport. Following the closures across the lower Medway, and the Swale to the Isle of Sheppey, during the 20th century, the Woolwich Ferry is the only domestic ferry that runs in the broadest definition of the county.
The earliest locomotive-driven passenger-carrying railway in Britain was the Canterbury and Whitstable Railway which opened in 1830. This and the London and Greenwich Railway later merged into South Eastern Railway (SER). By the 1850s, SER's networks had expanded to Ashford, Ramsgate, Canterbury, Tunbridge Wells, and the Medway towns. SER's major London termini were London Bridge, Charing Cross, and Cannon Street. Kent also had a second major railway, the London, Chatham and Dover Railway (LCDR). Originally the East Kent Railway in 1858, it linked the northeast Kent coast with London terminals at Victoria and Blackfriars.
The two companies merged in 1899, forming the South Eastern and Chatham Railway (SECR), further amalgamated with other railways by the Railways Act 1921 to form the Southern Railway. Britain's railways were nationalised in 1948, forming British Railways (shortened to British Rail in the mid-1960s). The railways were privatised in 1996 and most Kent passenger services were franchised to Connex South Eastern. Following financial difficulties, Connex lost the franchise and was replaced by South Eastern Trains and after Southeastern.
The Channel Tunnel was completed in 1994 and High Speed 1 in November 2007 with a London terminus at St Pancras. A new station, Ebbsfleet International, opened between Dartford and Gravesend, serving northern Kent. The high speed lines will be utilised to provide a faster train service to coastal towns like Ramsgate and Folkestone. This station is in addition to the existing station at Ashford International, which has suffered a massive cut in service as a result.
In addition to the "main line" railways, there are several light, heritage, and industrial railways in Kent. There are three heritage, standard gauge railways; Spa Valley Railway near Tunbridge Wells on the old Tunbridge Wells West branch, East Kent Railway on the old East Kent coalfield area and the Kent and East Sussex Railway on the Weald around Tenterden. In addition there is the 15-inch (380 mm) gauge, Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway on the southeast Kent coast along the Dungeness peninsula. Finally, there is the 2 ft 6 in (0.76 m), industrial Sittingbourne & Kemsley Light Railway, previously the Bowaters Paper Railway.
In 2002, it was revealed that the government was considering building a new four-runway airport on the marshland near the village of Cliffe on Hoo Peninsula. This plan was dropped in 2003 following protests by cultural and environmental groups. However further plans for a Thames Estuary Airport on the Kent coast have subsequently emerged, including the Thames Hub Airport, again sited on the Isle of Grain and designed by Lord Foster, and the London Britannia Airport plan, colloquially known as "Boris Island" due to its being championed by the former Mayor of London Boris Johnson, which would see a six runway airport built on an artificial island to be towards the Shivering Sands area, north-east of Whitstable. Both of these options were dropped in 2014 in favour of expansion at either Gatwick or Heathrow Airport, the latter finally being the chosen option following Theresa May's installation as Prime Minister in summer 2016.
Kent has four universities: Canterbury Christ Church University with campuses throughout East Kent; University of Kent, with campuses in Canterbury and Medway; University of Greenwich (a London University), with sites at Woolwich, Eltham, London and Medway; the University for the Creative Arts (UCA) also has three of its five campuses in the county.
Although much of Britain adopted a comprehensive education system in the 1970s, Kent County Council (KCC) and Medway Unitary Authority are among around fifteen local authorities still providing wholly selective education through the eleven-plus examination with students allocated a place at a secondary modern school or at a grammar school.
Kent County Council has the largest education department of any local council in Britain, providing school places for over 289,000 pupils.
In 2005–06, Kent County Council and Medway introduced a standardised school year, based on six terms, as recommended by the Local Government Association in its 2000 report, "The Rhythms of Schooling".
Kent County Council Local Education Authority maintains 96 secondary schools, of which 33 are selective schools and 63 are secondary modern schools.
|Schools in Kent (data from 2000)|
Music education is provided by Kent Music (formerly Kent Music School), which has its origins in the 1940s. Kent Music provides services across the county including Kent County Youth Orchestra, Kent Youth Choirs, and an annual summer school at Benenden School.
Kent has the highest number of National Challenge schools in England: schools which are branded 'failing' based on the British Government's floor targets that 30% of pupils achieve at least 5 GCSE grades A* to C. Of the 63 secondary modern schools, 33 missed this target; thus 52% of Kent secondary modern schools (34% out of all 96 maintained secondary schools) are 'failing'.
In association football, Kent's highest ranked football team is Gillingham FC, who play in Football League One. Maidstone United were a Football League side from 1989 until going bankrupt in 1992. Kent clubs in the higher levels of non-league football include the current incarnation of Maidstone United and Dover Athletic playing in the National League along with Ebbsfleet United, who were promoted in 2017. Dartford currently play in National League South, the sixth tier of the English football pyramid.
Kent is represented in cricket by Kent County Cricket Club. The club was a founder member of the County Championship in 1890 and has won the competition, the major domestic first-class cricket competition, seven times. The club is based at the St Lawrence Ground in Canterbury and also plays matches at the Nevill Ground in Royal Tunbridge Wells and the County Cricket Ground, Beckenham. The Kent Women cricket team has won the Women's County Championship seven times since it was established in 1997. Cricket has traditionally been a popular sport in the county and Kent is considered one of the locations in which the game first developed. Teams have represented the county since the early 18th century. The Kent Cricket League is the top level of club competition within Kent and features teams from throughout the county, including areas such as Beckenham and Bexley which were formerly part of the county.
Canterbury Hockey Club and Holcombe Hockey Club both play in the top division in both the men's and women's England Hockey Leagues. Sevenoaks Hockey Club's women first XI plays in the second tier of national competition. In Rugby Union Canterbury RFC play in the fourth tier of English rugby in the National League 2 South. Gravesend RFC and Tonbridge Juddians both play in the fifth tier National League 3 London & SE. Blackheath FC, a club within the historic boundaries of the county, play in National League 1, the third tier of English rugby.
In motorsport, the Brands Hatch circuit near Swanley has played host to a number of national and international racing events, and hosted 12 runnings of the British Grand Prix in various years between 1964 and 1986.
Kent is home to two National League netball clubs, both based in northwest Kent: Telstars (Premier Division 2) and KCNC (Premier Division 3).
Much of Kent is served by the BBC's South East region, which is based in Tunbridge Wells and provides local news for the county and East Sussex. Its commercial rival is ITV Meridian Ltd, which has a newsroom at The Maidstone Studios despite the main studio being based in Hampshire. Main transmitters providing these services are at West Hougham, near Dover and Blue Bell Hill, between Chatham and Maidstone. A powerful relay transmitter at Tunbridge Wells serves the town and surrounding area. Those parts of Kent closest to London such as Swanley, Westerham, Dartford, Gravesend and Sevenoaks lie within the ITV London and BBC London areas, taking their television signals from the Crystal Palace transmitter.
Most of the county is covered by local radio network KMFM, owned by the KM Group. Since March 2012, programmes have been the same across all seven stations in the network: KMFM Ashford, KMFM Canterbury, KMFM Maidstone, KMFM Medway, KMFM Shepway and White Cliffs Country, KMFM Thanet and KMFM West Kent.
The county has eight community radio stations run by various organisations.
Dover Community Radio (DCR) offers a podcasting service for the people of Dover district on their website, hoping in the future to apply for a community radio licence to cover the town and its environs.
A newly established Digital Radio platform has been created in Deal. Deal Radio is an online radio station created for the East Kent communities in and around the town of Deal. www.dealradio.co.uk
The KM Group, KOS Media and Kent Regional News and Media all provide local newspapers for most of the large towns and cities. County-wide papers include the Kent Messenger, Kent on Saturday, Kent on Sunday, and the Kent and Sussex Courier.
The Archbishop of Canterbury is the senior bishop and principal leader of the Church of England, the symbolic head of the worldwide Anglican Communion and the diocesan bishop of the Diocese of Canterbury. The current archbishop is Justin Welby, who was enthroned at Canterbury Cathedral on 21 March 2013. Welby is the 105th in a line which goes back more than 1400 years to Augustine of Canterbury, the "Apostle to the English", sent from Rome in the year 597. Welby succeeded Rowan Williams.From the time of Augustine until the 16th century, the Archbishops of Canterbury were in full communion with the See of Rome and usually received the pallium from the Pope. During the English Reformation, the Church of England broke away from the authority of the Catholic Church. Thomas Cranmer became the first Protestant holder of the office in 1533, while Reginald Pole was the last Catholic in the position, serving from 1556 to 1558 during the Counter-Reformation. In the Middle Ages there was considerable variation in the methods of nomination of the Archbishop of Canterbury and other bishops. At various times the choice was made by the canons of Canterbury Cathedral, the Pope, or the King of England. Since the English Reformation, the Church of England has been more explicitly a state church and the choice is legally that of the Crown; today it is made by the Queen on the advice of the Prime Minister, who in turn receives a shortlist of two names from an ad hoc committee called the Crown Nominations Commission.Canterbury
Canterbury ( (listen), ) is a historic English cathedral city and UNESCO World Heritage Site, situated in the heart of the City of Canterbury, a local government district of Kent, England. It lies on the River Stour.
The Archbishop of Canterbury is the primate of the Church of England and the worldwide Anglican Communion owing to the importance of St Augustine, who served as the apostle to the pagan Kingdom of Kent around the turn of the 7th century. The city's cathedral became a major focus of pilgrimage following the 1170 martyrdom of Thomas Becket, although it had already been a well-trodden pilgrim destination since the murder of St Alphege by the men of King Canute in 1012. A journey of pilgrims to Becket's shrine served as the frame for Geoffrey Chaucer's 14th century classic The Canterbury Tales.
Canterbury is a popular tourist destination: consistently one of the most-visited cities in the United Kingdom, the city's economy is heavily reliant upon tourism. The city has been occupied since Paleolithic times and served as the capital of the Celtic Cantiaci and Jute Kingdom of Kent. Many historical structures fill the area, including a city wall founded in Roman times and rebuilt in the 14th century, the ruins of St Augustine's Abbey and a Norman castle, and the oldest extant school in the world, the King's School. Modern additions include the Marlowe Theatre and the St Lawrence Ground, home of the Kent County Cricket Club. There is also a substantial student population, brought about by the presence of the University of Kent, Canterbury Christ Church University, the University for the Creative Arts, and the Girne American University Canterbury campus. Canterbury remains, however, a small city in terms of geographical size and population, when compared with other British cities.Doctor Fate
Doctor Fate (also known as Fate) is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. The character has appeared in various incarnations, with Doctor Fate being the name of several different individuals in the DC Universe who are a succession of sorcerers. The original version of the character was created by writer Gardner Fox and artist Howard Sherman, and first appeared in More Fun Comics #55 (May 1940).Dover
Dover () is a major ferry port in Kent, South East England. It faces France across the Strait of Dover, the narrowest part of the English Channel, and lies south-east of Canterbury and east of Maidstone. The town is the administrative centre of the Dover District and home of the Dover Calais ferry through the Port of Dover. The surrounding chalk cliffs are known as the White Cliffs of Dover.
Archaeological finds have revealed that the area has always been a focus for peoples entering and leaving Britain. The name derives from the River Dour that flows through it.
The Port of Dover provides much of the town's employment, as does tourism.Jason Bateman
Jason Kent Bateman (born January 14, 1969) is an American actor, director, and producer. He began acting on television in the early 1980s on Little House on the Prairie, Silver Spoons, and The Hogan Family. In the 2000s, he became known for his role of Michael Bluth using deadpan comedy in the sitcom Arrested Development, for which he won a Golden Globe and a Satellite Award. He has also appeared in the films Teen Wolf Too (1987), The Break-Up (2006), Juno (2007), Hancock (2008), Up in the Air, Couples Retreat, Extract (all 2009), The Switch (2010), Horrible Bosses (2011), The Gift (2015), Office Christmas Party, Zootopia (both 2016) and Game Night (2018).
Bateman made his directorial debut with the black comedy Bad Words (2013), in which he also starred. He has since directed and starred in The Family Fang (2015) and the Netflix crime drama series Ozark (2017–present).Julian Edelman
Julian Francis Edelman (born May 22, 1986) is an American football wide receiver and punt returner for the New England Patriots of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at Kent State and the College of San Mateo as a quarterback. He was drafted by the Patriots in the seventh round of the 2009 NFL Draft. Edelman primarily plays in the slot on offense and as a punt returner; he has also been pressed into service as a cornerback at times when the Patriots have been shorthanded on defense.
Edelman is one of the most productive receivers in post-season history, ranking second overall (behind Jerry Rice) in both post-season receiving yards and post-season receptions. He has played in four Super Bowls (XLVI, XLIX, LI, and LIII). In each of the last three (all Patriots wins), he led all wide receivers in receiving yards. He was named Super Bowl MVP for Super Bowl LIII, in which he had 10 catches for 141 yards receiving, more than half of his team's total receiving yardage. He holds the Super Bowl records for career punt returns (8) and first-half receptions in a single game (7). Edelman is the first Jewish football player to be named Super Bowl MVP.Kent Music Report
The Kent Music Report was a weekly record chart of Australian music singles and albums which was compiled by music enthusiast David Kent from May 1974 through to 1988. After 1988, the Australian Recording Industry Association, who had been using the report under licence for a number of years, chose to produce their own charts as the ARIA Charts.Before the Kent Report, Go-Set magazine published weekly Top-40 Singles from 1966 and Album charts from 1970 until the magazine's demise in August 1974.David Kent later publicised the Australian charts from 1940–1973 in a retrospective fashion using state by state chart data obtained from various Australian radio stations.Kent State Golden Flashes football
The Kent State Golden Flashes football team is a varsity intercollegiate athletic team of Kent State University in Kent, Ohio. The team is a member of the Mid-American Conference East division, which is part of the National Collegiate Athletic Association's Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I-A). The Golden Flashes played their first game in 1920 and since 1969 have played their home games at Dix Stadium.Kent State University
Kent State University (KSU) is a large, primarily residential, public research university in Kent, Ohio, United States. The university also includes seven regional campuses in Northeast Ohio and additional facilities in the region and internationally. Regional campuses are located in Ashtabula, Burton, East Liverpool, Jackson Township, New Philadelphia, Salem, and Warren, Ohio, with additional facilities in Cleveland, Independence, and Twinsburg, Ohio, New York City, and Florence, Italy.
The university was established in 1910 as a teacher-training school. The first classes were held in 1912 at various locations and in temporary buildings in Kent and the first buildings of the original campus opened the following year. Since then, the university has grown to include many additional baccalaureate and graduate programs of study in the arts and sciences, research opportunities, as well as over 1,000 acres (405 ha) and 119 buildings on the Kent campus. During the late 1960s and early 1970s, the university was known internationally for its student activism in opposition to U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War, due mainly to the Kent State shootings in 1970.
As of September 2017, Kent State is one of the largest universities in Ohio with an enrollment of 39,367 students in the eight-campus system and 28,972 students at the main campus in Kent. In 2010, Kent State was ranked as one of the top 200 universities in the world by Times Higher Education. U.S. News & World Report's 2017 rankings put Kent State as tied for #188 for National Universities and tied for #101 in Top Public Schools. Kent State offers over 300 degree programs, among them 250 baccalaureate, 40 associate, 50 master's, and 23 doctoral programs of study, which include such notable programs as nursing, business, history, library science, aeronautics, journalism, fashion design and the Liquid Crystal Institute. Kent State had a Fall 2015 acceptance rate of 85%.Kent State shootings
The Kent State shootings (also known as the May 4 massacre or the Kent State massacre) were the shootings on May 4, 1970, of unarmed college students by members of the Ohio National Guard at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio, during a mass protest against the bombing of Cambodia by United States military forces.
Twenty-eight guardsmen fired approximately 67 rounds over a period of 13 seconds, killing four students and wounding nine others, one of whom suffered permanent paralysis.Some of the students who were shot had been protesting against the Cambodian Campaign, which President Richard Nixon announced during a television address on April 30 of that year. Other students who were shot had been walking nearby or observing the protest from a distance.There was a significant national response to the shootings: hundreds of universities, colleges, and high schools closed throughout the United States due to a student strike of 4 million students, and the event further affected public opinion, at an already socially contentious time, over the role of the United States in the Vietnam War.Kingdom of Kent
The Kingdom of the Kentish (Old English: Cantaware Rīce; Latin: Regnum Cantuariorum), today referred to as the Kingdom of Kent, was an early medieval kingdom in what is now South East England. It existed from either the fifth or the sixth century CE until it was fully absorbed into the Kingdom of England in the tenth century.
Under the preceding Romano-British administration the area of Kent faced repeated attacks from seafaring raiders during the fourth century CE. It is likely that Germanic-speaking foederati were invited to settle in the area as mercenaries. Following the end of Roman administration, in 410, further linguistically Germanic tribal groups moved into the area, as testified by both archaeological evidence and Late Anglo-Saxon textual sources. The primary ethnic group to settle in the area appears to have been the Jutes: they established their Kingdom in East Kent and may initially have been under the dominion of the Kingdom of Francia. It has been argued that an East Saxon community initially settled in West Kent, but was conquered by the expanding kingdom of East Kent in the sixth century.
The earliest recorded King of Kent was Æthelberht, who, as Bretwalda, wielded significant influence over other Anglo-Saxon kings in the late sixth century. The Christianization of the Anglo-Saxons began in Kent during Æthelberht's reign with the arrival of the monk Augustine of Canterbury and his Gregorian mission in 597.
Kent was one of the seven kingdoms of the so-called Anglo-Saxon heptarchy, but it lost its independence in the 8th century when it became a sub-kingdom of Mercia. In the 9th century it became a sub-kingdom of Wessex, and in the 10th century it became part of the unified Kingdom of England that was created under the leadership of Wessex. Its name has been carried forward ever since as the county of Kent.
Knowledge of Anglo-Saxon Kent comes from scholarly study of Late Anglo-Saxon texts such as the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle and the Ecclesiastical History of the English People, as well as archaeological evidence such as that left by early medieval cemeteries and settlements, and toponymical (place-name) evidence.Prince Edward, Duke of Kent
Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, (Edward George Nicholas Paul Patrick; born 9 October 1935) is a member of the British royal family.
He is a first cousin of Queen Elizabeth II through their fathers, Prince George, Duke of Kent, and King George VI. He has held the title of Duke of Kent for over 76 years, since the death of his father in a plane crash in 1942.
The Duke of Kent carries out engagements on behalf of the Queen. He is president of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, presenting the trophies to the Wimbledon champion and runner-up, and served as the United Kingdom's Special Representative for International Trade and Investment, retiring in 2001. He is president of The Scout Association, the Royal United Services Institute, and the Royal Institution of Great Britain, and since 1967 Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of England. He is also patron of the Institute of Advanced Motorists, an independent road safety charity which specialises in training and advice for post-licence drivers and riders.
Since his mother, Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark, was a cousin of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, Edward is both a second cousin and first cousin once removed to Prince Charles and his siblings.Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn
Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, (Edward Augustus; 2 November 1767 – 23 January 1820) was the fourth son and fifth child of Britain's king, George III, and the father of Queen Victoria.
Prince Edward was created Duke of Kent and Strathearn and Earl of Dublin on 23 April 1799 and, a few weeks later, appointed a General and commander-in-chief of British forces in the Maritime Provinces of North America. On 23 March 1802, he was appointed Governor of Gibraltar and nominally retained that post until his death. The Duke of Kent was appointed Field-Marshal of the Forces on 3 September 1805.He was the first member of the royal family to live in North America for more than a short visit (1791–1800) and, in 1794, the first prince to enter the United States (travelling to Boston on foot from Lower Canada) after independence.
On June 27, 1792, Edward is credited with the first use of the term "Canadian" to mean both French and English settlers in Upper and Lower Canada. The Prince used the term in an effort to quell a riot between the two groups at a polling station in Charlesbourg, Lower Canada. Recently he has been styled the "Father of the Canadian Crown" for his impact on the development of Canada.Prince George, Duke of Kent
Prince George, Duke of Kent, (George Edward Alexander Edmund; 20 December 1902 – 25 August 1942) was the fourth son of King George V and Queen Mary. He was the younger brother of Edward VIII and George VI. He served in the Royal Navy in the 1920s and then briefly served as a civil servant. He became Duke of Kent in 1934. In the late 1930s he served as an RAF officer, initially as a staff officer at RAF Training Command and then, from July 1941, as a staff officer in the Welfare Section of the RAF Inspector General's Staff. He was killed in a military air-crash on 25 August 1942.
Both before and after his marriage, Prince George had a string of affairs with both men and women, from socialites to Hollywood celebrities.Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld
Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld (17 August 1786 – 16 March 1861), later Duchess of Kent and Strathearn, was a German princess and the mother of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom. As the widow of Charles, Prince of Leiningen (1763–1814), from 1814 she served as regent of the Principality during the minority of her son from her first marriage, Carl, until her second wedding in 1818 to Prince Edward, son of King George III of the United Kingdom.Queen Victoria
Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria; 24 May 1819 – 22 January 1901) was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until her death. On 1 May 1876, she adopted the additional title of Empress of India.
Victoria was the daughter of Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of King George III. Both the Duke and the King died in 1820, and Victoria was raised under close supervision by her mother, Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld. She inherited the throne at the age of 18, after her father's three elder brothers had all died, leaving no surviving legitimate children. The United Kingdom was already an established constitutional monarchy, in which the sovereign held relatively little direct political power. Privately, Victoria attempted to influence government policy and ministerial appointments; publicly, she became a national icon who was identified with strict standards of personal morality.
Victoria married her first cousin Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in 1840. Their nine children married into royal and noble families across the continent, tying them together and earning her the sobriquet "the grandmother of Europe". After Albert's death in 1861, Victoria plunged into deep mourning and avoided public appearances. As a result of her seclusion, republicanism temporarily gained strength, but in the latter half of her reign, her popularity recovered. Her Golden and Diamond Jubilees were times of public celebration.
Her reign of 63 years and seven months was longer than that of any of her predecessors and is known as the Victorian era. It was a period of industrial, cultural, political, scientific, and military change within the United Kingdom, and was marked by a great expansion of the British Empire. She was the last British monarch of the House of Hanover. Her son and successor, Edward VII, initiated the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, the line of his father.Superman
Superman is a fictional superhero created by writer Jerry Siegel and artist Joe Shuster. He first appeared in Action Comics #1, a comic book published on April 18, 1938. He appears regularly in American comic books published by DC Comics, and has been adapted to radio shows, newspaper strips, television shows, movies, and video games.
Superman was born on the planet Krypton and named Kal-El. As a baby, he was sent to Earth in a small spaceship by his scientist father Jor-El moments before Krypton was destroyed in a natural cataclysm. His ship landed in the American countryside; he was found and adopted by farmers Jonathan and Martha Kent, who named him Clark Kent. Clark displayed various superhuman abilities, such as incredible strength and impervious skin. His foster parents advised him to use his gifts for the benefit of humanity, and he decided to use his powers to fight crime as a vigilante. To protect his privacy, he changes into a colorful costume and uses the alias "Superman" when fighting crime. Clark Kent resides in the fictional American city of Metropolis, where he works as a journalist for the Daily Planet. Superman's love interest is his fellow journalist Lois Lane, and his classic arch-enemy is the genius inventor Lex Luthor. He is a friend of many other superheroes in the DC Universe, such as Batman and Wonder Woman.
Superman is a cultural icon of the United States. Superman popularized the superhero genre and defined its conventions, and it remains one of the most lucrative superhero franchises.The Who
The Who are an English rock band formed in London in 1964. Their classic line-up consisted of lead singer Roger Daltrey, guitarist and singer Pete Townshend, bass guitarist John Entwistle and drummer Keith Moon. They are considered one of the most influential rock bands of the 20th century, selling over 100 million records worldwide and holding a reputation for their live shows and studio work.
The Who developed from an earlier group, the Detours, and established themselves as part of the pop art and mod movements, featuring auto-destructive art by destroying guitars and drums on stage. Their first single as the Who, "I Can't Explain", reached the UK top ten, followed by a string of singles including "My Generation", "Substitute" and "Happy Jack". In 1967, they performed at the Monterey Pop Festival and released the US top ten single "I Can See for Miles", while touring extensively. The group's fourth album, 1969's rock opera Tommy, included the single "Pinball Wizard" and was a critical and commercial success. Live appearances at Woodstock and the Isle of Wight Festival, along with the live album Live at Leeds, cemented their reputation as a respected rock act. With their success came increased pressure on lead songwriter Townshend, and the follow-up to Tommy, Lifehouse, was abandoned. Songs from the project made up 1971's Who's Next, which included the hit "Won't Get Fooled Again". The group released the album Quadrophenia in 1973 as a celebration of their mod roots, and oversaw the film adaptation of Tommy in 1975. They continued to tour to large audiences before semi-retiring from live performances at the end of 1976. The release of Who Are You in 1978 was overshadowed by the death of Moon shortly after.
Kenney Jones replaced Moon and the group resumed activity, releasing a film adaptation of Quadrophenia and the retrospective documentary The Kids Are Alright. After Townshend became weary of touring, the group split in 1983. The Who occasionally re-formed for live appearances such as Live Aid in 1985, a 25th anniversary tour in 1989 and a tour of Quadrophenia in 1996–1997. They resumed regular touring in 1999, with drummer Zak Starkey. After Entwistle's death in 2002, plans for a new album were delayed. Townshend and Daltrey continued as the Who, releasing Endless Wire in 2006, and continued to play live regularly.
The Who's major contributions to rock music include the development of the Marshall stack, large PA systems, use of the synthesizer, Entwistle and Moon's lead playing styles, Townshend's feedback and power chord guitar technique, and the development of the rock opera. They are cited as an influence by hard rock, punk rock and mod bands, and their songs still receive regular exposure.University of Kent
The University of Kent (formerly the University of Kent at Canterbury, abbreviated as UKC) is a semi-collegiate public research university based in Kent, United Kingdom. It was founded in 1965 and is recognised as a Beloff's plate glass university. The University was granted its Royal Charter on 4 January 1965 and the following year Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent was formally installed as the first Chancellor.The university has a rural campus north of Canterbury situated within 300 acres (1.2 km2) of park land, housing over 6,000 students, as well as campuses in Medway and Tonbridge in Kent and European postgraduate centres in Brussels, Athens, Rome and Paris. The University is international, with students from 158 different nationalities and 41% of its academic and research staff being from outside the United Kingdom.As of 2017, the University of Kent is ranked within the top 25 universities in the UK by the Guardian, the Times Higher Education and the Complete University Guide, and has consistently scored 90% or higher for overall satisfaction in the National Student Survey. In 2016, over 28,000 students applied to the University through UCAS and 4000 accepted an offer.Indeed, almost three-quarters of the work submitted for the 2014 research assessments by the University was judged to be world-leading or internationally excellent. It is a member of the Santander Network of European universities encouraging social and economic development.