insideKENT Magazine Issue 49 - April 2016 - Page 106

DAYSOUT Elham Walk – PEACE AND TRANQUILLITY Nestled deep in the Kentish countryside, Elham is just like a Garden of Delights and truly lives up to the Kent ‘Garden of England’ image. This is a wonderful walk taking in the true sights of spring – complete with views of fields all set out in a pretty crosspatch fashion which span out all around you – and the panoramic views do not stop there. Take in the sights of church spires, quaint villages and green pastures all teeming with wildlife. Spring is all about new beginnings and this walk will allow you to take in the first signs of everything synonymous with the season. TAKING IN THE FINE SIGHTS OF ELHAM STARTING OUT If you’ve been holed up inside over winter and only just feel like venturing out, the Elham Walk is a great starting point. Elham is a village that is steeped in history. Like many villages it once had a thriving village centre with trades such as brick making, iron smelting, rope making and brewing in full swing. Elham can be traced back to the time of the Saxons and was granted a market in the 13th century when it was known for quality of its leather and hides. The market continued until the 19th century along with a horse fair. This circular walk is suitable for most levels of walking skill although there are stiles situated throughout this walk. The walking route is well marked so finding your way around won’t be difficult. As you walk through the fresh green pastures of Elham, it is hard to imagine such a bustling village economy but less hard to imagine is why notable celebrities such as the British statesman and prime minister Sir Anthony Eden and the actress Katie Johnson, as well as the Kent and England cricketers Leslie Ames and Mark Elham have been residents here. Start at Elham Square, which houses the Kings Arms pub – a highly recommended pre- or postwalk stop off for a well-cooked Sunday lunch and a range of real ales – the very beautiful Elham church and a host of pretty residential listed properties. From here, walk down Duck Street past the church until you reach a signposted footpath o