Visit Aylesford and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
Aylesford, Kent. On the Medway, 3 miles from Maidstone. this village has kept much of its old character although so close to the county town. It has a number of old houses and a restored medieval stone bridge spans the river.
On the outskirts of the village is the Carmelite Friary. The monastery was dissolved by Henry VIII but the Carmelites returned in 1949; the first of the dissolved orders to come back to their own home and find portions of it still under the same roof as when they left. During their 400-year absence some of the buildings had been pulled down and others allowed to decay; extensive repairs were needed on their return. However, much of the old fabric remains from the 14th and 15th centuries, with some traces of l3th century work still visible. Although restored and re-roofed the 15th century, Pilgrims' Hall, where medieval guests received hospitality, is structurally little altered, and is today, appropriately, the guests' dining-hall. The modern furniture was made by the brothers and lay-craftsmen in the friary's own workshop. They also make excellent pottery ware and statuary for sale.
Notable is the modern piazza which can hold a congregation of 2,000 pilgrims. Modern mosaics have been beautifully used at the back of the altar. The monastery guest-house can accommodate 80 guests and is open to all, regardless of denomination.
The triumphant return of the Order to its ancient home is expressed by the inscription over the entrance to the main courtyard: “The flower of Carmel once cut down now flourishes more luxuriantly than ever.”
About 1 mile North on a low hill is the spectacular megalithic monument known as Kit's Coty House. This is the exposed burial chamber of a Neolithic long barrow and is probably at least 5,000 years old. The burial mound has long since disappeared but the dolinens remain, one great stone forming the roof, with three mighty supports. It is the finest prehistoric monument of its type in Kent.
Adjacent cities/towns/villages: Allington, Bearsted, Borough Green, Boughton Monchelsea, Boxley, Bredhurst, Brompton, Broomfield, Burham, Chatham, Cobham, Cuxton, Detling, East Barming, East Farleigh, East Malling, East Peckham, Eccles, Gilling, Gillingham, Hadlow, Halling, Hempstead, Holborough, Hollingbourne, Hunton, Langley, Leeds, Linton, Loose, Luddesdown, Maidstone, Meopham, Mereworth, Offham, Rainham, Rochester, Ryarsh, Snodland, Sole Street, Stockbury, Strood, Sutton Valence, Trotterscliffe, Ulcombe, Upchurch, Vigo, Wainscott, Wateringbury, West Malling, West Peckham, Wouldham, Wrotham, Yalding
Have you decided to visit Aylesford or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a Aylesford bed and breakfast (a Aylesford B&B or Aylesford b and b)
- a Aylesford guesthouse
- a Aylesford hotel (or motel)
- a Aylesford self-catering establishment, or
- other Aylesford accommodation