Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Milestone on Pilgrim's Way

A Scheduled Monument in Kemsing, Kent

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Latitude: 51.3098 / 51°18'35"N

Longitude: 0.2181 / 0°13'5"E

OS Eastings: 554698.552706

OS Northings: 159081.436487

OS Grid: TQ546590

Mapcode National: GBR TY.CN9

Mapcode Global: VHHPL.QBPQ

Entry Name: Milestone on Pilgrim's Way

Scheduled Date: 24 September 1975

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1004215

English Heritage Legacy ID: KE 304

County: Kent

Civil Parish: Kemsing

Built-Up Area: Otford

Traditional County: Kent

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Kent

Church of England Parish: Kemsing St Mary the Virgin

Church of England Diocese: Rochester


Milestone 66m SSE of Eastlea.

Source: Historic England


This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 3 September 2014. The record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.

The monument includes a milestone situated on a south-facing slope near the corner of Childsbridge Lane and Pilgrim’s Way in Kemsing.

There is an inscription on each side; the north face reads ‘the way to Dartford’, the west face reads ‘to Brom[le]y 12 miles’, and the east face reads ‘to Malling 10 miles’. The south face is now illegible but formerly read ‘the way to Sevenoaks’. The original date of the stone is not known. The milestone is located on the Pilgrim’s Way, a trackway at the foot of the North Downs escarpment traditionally associated with a pilgrim route to Canterbury.

The milestone is shown on Kent OS Maps (1:2500) of 1894, 1896, 1909 and 1938.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Milestones are both an important testament to the development of the transport network and are reminders of different perceptions of distance in a pre-motorised age. In the mid-eighteenth century milestones became prevalent after turnpike trusts were encouraged to provide markers on roads. They often display a notable amount of individuality before the late eighteenth century.

Although weathered, the milestone 66m SSE of Eastlea survives comparatively well. It is of historic interest in its own right and for its location on the Pilgrim’s Way, a trackway traditionally associated with a pilgrim route to Canterbury.

Source: Historic England


Kent HER TQ 55 NW 39. NMR TQ 55 NW 39. PastScape 409696,

Source: Historic England

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