A SHORT HISTORY OF ‘CHARLTON COURT’,

EAST SUTTON, KENT

 

Charlton Court stands on the Greensand Ridge. The main building was built in 1612, owned by Sir Edward Filmer and is a fine example of Jacobean Renaissance architecture. From 1917 it was used as a boarding school for working men’s children (The Caldecott Community*) and during WW1 Charlton Court was used as a military Hospital. It was sold to Bethlem Hospital in 1948 and in 1954 the then named ‘Red Hill’ boarding school bought the site. From 1993 to 2003 the school was leased by Kent County Council as a school for children with emotional and behavioural difficulties. It hosted village events such as the East Sutton Youth Summer Camp and the Garden Party. In 2004 a property developer purchased the site and development of several houses on the complex has taken place together with the restoration of the 17th century manor house. During the building works at Charlton Court it was reported that a priest-hole was found in the main building together with remains of what is rumoured to be a tunnel leading to the church. On the removal of a false ceiling it was found to conceal a coffin. After the police and coroner were called the coffin was found to be empty.

 

*Edited in note

 

Above text (minimally edited) and taken from a larger publicly accessible online East Sutton Parish Council document ‘East Sutton Parish Plan 2007’

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Further refs. to Charlton Court:

 

1)‘East Sutton Parish Plan 2007’ :

http://dynamic.maidstone.gov.uk/pdf/East%20Sutton%20Parish%20Plan1.pdf

2) Flickr https://www.flickr.com/search/?text=Charlton%20Court

3) Geograph: http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/4677144

4) Red Hill School official site / picture gallery containing early

Caldecott Community picture refs:

http://redhillschool.info/gallery.htm

5) The Red Hill Trust:

http://www.redhilltrust.org/

6) ‘Charlton Court artist’:

http://www.franciswardale.com/_photo_10864705.html#photos_id=10864705

7) Most recent redevelopment of site into retirement homes video clip

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YC7nLyQSvTk

8) Kent Photo Archive / 9 wonderful period interior views of Charlton Court:

http://www.kentphotoarchive.com/kpa/maidstone/index.php?pagenumber=10&maidstone=23

9) British History Online / East Sutton:

http://www.british-history.ac.uk/survey-kent/vol5/pp375-385