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Holidays in Biddenden

A little bit of Darling Buds of May

UK | South Coast | Kent | Biddenden
The village green at Biddenden

Biddenden is a picturesque Kent village a few miles north of Tenterden and was once the centre of the Wealden iron industry. It was also a thriving area for weaving when during the reign of Edward III Flemish weavers settled in the area to produce broadcloth. Many fine houses were built in the area as a result of this flourishing industry. Wandering around the village you can admire the fine timber framed buildings and will be spoilt for choice with the number of tempting places to eat. It also boasts a Michelin Star restaurant The West House in one of the 16th century weavers cottages.

As you enter the village you will find the village sign on the green of the famous Biddenden Maids who were born in 1100 conjoined at the hips and shoulders. They lived for 34 years and are believed to have left the church a legacy of 20 acres of land nearby which has been used ever since for the benefit of the poor of the village and is known as The Chulkhurst Charity. Once a year on Easter Monday, Biddenden Biscuits, baked from flour and water are given to locals bearing the image of the conjoined twins, alongside bread and cheese, are dispensed to the needy. The church is worth a visit being an impressive building of flint, ragstone and Bethersden marble which has a fascinating history stretching back over 700 years.

“The Biddenden Maids are central to the village history...”

Nestled at the heart of the Garden of England, the countryside surrounding Biddenden is a patchwork of orchards, hop gardens and lush meadows and in a sheltered valley you will discover Biddenden Vineyard. Visitors are welcome to stroll around the 23 acres of vines and enjoy free wine and cider tasting, and the apple juice is not to be missed. The vineyard café shop also has a tempting array of local produce and gifts to take home as a reminder of this unique part of Kent sometimes referred to as Darling Buds of May country.

Biddenden

Visitors to the area should also have Sissinghurst Castle and Gardens on their itinerary for a fascinating day out. Only a few miles from Biddenden the castle and gardens are renowned worldwide as the former home of the writer Vita Sackville-West and her husband Harold Nicolson; the gardens are designed as an inspiring series of rooms arranged in an idyllic setting. Stop at The Three Chimneys for lunch on the way. The pub dates from 1420 and has derived its name from the French soldiers who were imprisoned at Sissinghurst from 1756. Placed on parole the French seamen were allowed out as far as the pub building which is on a junction with three roads, and they called it Les Trois Chemins.

While you’re there

The Three Chimneys

A traditional Kentish pub steeped in history, with oak beams, roaring log fires and a range of local wines and ales.

Biddenden Vineyard

Kent’s oldest commercial vineyard spanning 23 acres, lovely vineyard trails, and wine and cider tasting.

Sissinghurst Castle and Garden

Now owned by The National Trust the house and gardens make an interesting day out for all the family.

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