I love Kent and tiny little Kentish villages. On a sunny, wintery, February day, we travelled down to the village of Chiddingstone, one of the best preserved Tudor villages in England and said to be home to England’s oldest shop.
The Chiddingstone Stores and Post Office date back to a deed of 1453 and according to Kent Life, was later owned by Thomas Boleyn (father of Anne), who owned Hever Castle. Stepping into the Chiddingstone Post Office was a trip down memory lane. There were rows of classic English confectionary, cards, gifts and classic toys.
My step-mum owned a post office in the 90s and this reminded me so much of sneaking downstairs into the shop after hours to buy a 10p bag of sweets.
After stocking up on sweets and cards, our next stop was The Tulip Tree Tea Rooms located behind the post office.
The tea rooms are located in a converted coach house and are warm, cosy and inviting.
When we walked in, we noticed the most amazing smell. I can't remember what we thought we were going to have for lunch but as soon as we discovered the source of the aroma, we decided on the homemade sausage rolls. They were delicious.
Sufficiently warmed up and with full, happy bellies, we went in search of the famous Chiding Stone.
The National Trust tells us that The Chiding Stone may have been used by ancient druids for judicial purposes. Then again, it might also have been used during Medieval times to chide "nagging wives, wrongdoers and witches".
One of the main reasons we went to Chiddingstone was because there is a great 5 mile walk from Chiddingstone that will take you past Hever Castle and Markbeech. Sadly, illness prevented us from taking a long walk on the day but we'll definitely return.
Our last stop in Chiddingstone was the St Mary the Virgin Church, which dates back to the 13th century.
We had a fabulous afternoon. We'll definitely return to Chiddingstone one day, not only for the circular walk but also because Chiddingstone Castle and The Castle Inn pub are said to fabulous.
Directions to Chiddingstone Post Office
3 The Village