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12 Market Place, Faversham, Kent ME13 7AE


The Evolution of Faversham as a Town and Port

* = approximate date.

-40* Belgic farmstead established on CREEK/COOKSDITCH promontory (disused by 60*)

43 Roman conquest of Britain begins: building of Watling Street starts soon afterwards. Roman settlement along- side Watling Street soon begins at OSPRINGE.

Small town of DUROLEVUM (stronghold by the clear stream) established nearby.

85* Small villa built near Belgic farmstead (doubled in size 125*, extended 175*)

225* Villa downgraded (fell into disuse 275*)

290* SS Crispin and Crispianus resident in FAVERSHAM during reign of Carausius.

340* Mausoleum built at STONE (enlarged to become church 605*, abandoned 1540*)

410 Britain responsible for own defence.

449 Hengest and Horsa arrive to help defend Britain against Picts.

455 Hengest founds Kingdom of Kent.

699 Wihtred, King of Kent, charter of CILLING (?=Faversham) - monastic privileges.

811 Name of FEFRESHAM first recorded in Royal Charter calling it "the king's town".

835 Danish raids start.

839 Athelstan, King of Kent, at FAVERSHAM.

930 Athelstan, King of ˜England' holds witenagemot at FAVERSHAM.

940* ? Viking/Saxon boat abandoned at GRAVENEY (2000 still being treated at Portsmouth)

944* Danegeld payments start.

1016 Cnut King of England.

1042 Edward the Confessor King of England (Norman dawn).

1051* Confederation of Cinque Ports formed (FAVERSHAM founder member, cf 1252 Charter)

1066 Norman Conquest.

1070 FAVERSHAM CHURCH granted to St Augustine's Abbey by William I.

1135 Stephen, son of sister of Henry I, King of England.

1147 FAVERSHAM ABBEY founded by King Stephen, granted Manor of FAVERSHAM.

1151 Queen Matilda buried in FAVERSHAM ABBEY.

1153 Davington Priory founded by Fulk of Newnham.

1154 King Stephen dies, buried in FAVERSHAM ABBEY.

1189* OYSTER FISHERY COMPANY founded (traditionally).

1234 MAISON DIEU,OSPRINGE founded as Royal Lodge etc.

1252 First extant charter confirms privileges of BOROUGH as in time of Edward the Confessor.

1261 Second BOROUGH Charter, oldest to mention Cinque Ports (FAVERSHAM limb of Dover).

1301 ABBEY/BOROUGH dispute; Abbot imprisoned by Lord Warden. Lord Warden excommunicated by Archbishop; King Edward I accuses Archbishop of contempt.


1301 St Augustine's/BOROUGH dispute: St Augustine's sack Vicar, monks seize body he is burying at PRESTON; Mayor and TOWNSPEOPLE set fire to CHURCH, wound monks.

1388 Lord Warden/BOROUGH dispute: resolved in BOROUGH's favour in 1446.

1408 5th BOROUGH charter confirmed that King's officials had no right of entry.

1475* Common warehouse (now TS HAZARD) built.

1523 (and earlier) BOROUGH nominates one of Dover's two MPs.

1527 GRAMMAR SCHOOL founded.

1533 Henry Hatch leaves fortune for maintenance of CREEK etc.: will disputed, resolved 1574.

1538 Abbey dissolved (rubble shipped to Pale of Calais to strengthen defences, 1541).

1546 Thomas Arden obtains 8th BOROUGH charter: town's autonomy confirmed.

1550 Streets paved.

1551 Thomas Arden (Controller of Customs) murdered - Arden of Feversham (play 1592).

1559 CREEK sluice built.

1560* Gunpowder industry starts at HOME WORKS.

1574 New MARKET HOUSE built (becomes 3rd Guildhall 1603)

1585 More corn shipped through CREEK to London than from any other port (for 100 years).

1587 New GRAMMAR SCHOOL building opens.

1588 Hazard furnished to fight Spanish Armada.

1648 BOROUGH supports Protectorate.

1653 HOME WORKS expanded by Daniel Judd to increase output in first Dutch War.

1683 More wool exported through CREEK than from any English Port.

1685* OARE GUNPOWDER WORKS founded by Huguenot immigrants (supplied East India Company)

1688 King James II's brief imprisonment in FAVERSHAM.

1724 Smuggling rife through CREEK (Defoe).

1727 Faversham FARMERS' CLUB formed (oldest in country)

1729 Chatham-Canterbury ROAD turnpiked.

1730 Faversham-Chilham ROAD turnpiked.

1751 First accurate MAP of town commissioned: signposts erected on Watling Street.

1759 HOME WORKS nationalised.

1762 Faversham-Ashford-Hythe ROAD turnpiked.

1771 Inner ABBEY gatehouse demolished.

1772 Outer ABBEY gatehouse demolished.

1773 MALL laid out (grand approach from Watling Street).

1789 PAVEMENT COMMISSION established.

1835 Municipal Reform Act - Faversham county borough/ unitary authority in all but name..

1840 Henry Wreight leaves fortune to town - provides Schools, Rec, new Almshouses.

1842 Faversham NAVIGATION COMMISSION formed; CREEK improved 1843

1847 First GUNCOTTON factory in world opens in Faversham

1850 First large-scale BRICKFIELD opens (ABBEY BRICKFIELD)

1858 Strood-Faversham RAILWAY opens (rich Jutish finds in KINGSFIELD during building).

1860 CREEK branch railway opens.

1862 INSTITUTE opens.

1863 New ALMSHOUSES open - biggest in Kent.

1870 William Gibbs bequeaths many KINGSFIELD finds to Nation: many others dispersed.


1888 Local Government Act - KCC formed 1889.

1904 BOROUGH opens municipal power station.

1916 Great Explosion at UPLEES EXPLOSIVES FACTORIES - worst ever in UK.

1917 Pollock's SHIPYARD opens.


1920 Roman cemetery alongside Watling Street, OSPRINGE, excavated.

1930 OYSTER FISHERY COMPANY now a limited company, no longer a trade co-operative.

1934 GUNPOWDER factories close.

1948 BOROUGH electricity undertaking nationalised.

1958 Restoration of ABBEY STREET starts (first ˜town scheme').

1964 Excavation of ABBEY starts: Belgic farmstead and Roman villa found adjacent.

1964 CREEK BRANCH railway closes.

Faversham Society begins restoration of CHART GUNPOWDER MILLS, oldest in world.

1968 NAVIGATION COMMISSION superseded by Medway Ports Authority (later bought by Mersey Docks & Harbour Company).

1974 BOROUGH abolished, Faversham absorbed into new Borough of Swale.

1975 SHIPYARD closes.

1977 Faversham Society opens FLEUR DE LIS HERITAGE CENTRE.

1979 INSTITUTE demolished.

1995 Faversham Society re-opens MAISON DIEU museum.