As a very special arrangement the Friends were invited to visit the great Iron Age hill fort and also the medieval tile-kiln at Holwood, Keston in June. Thus a determined group of Friends assembled for a two mile hike through the forests of Keston, braving hot weather and occasional snakes.
The tile kiln, discovered by the Bromley and West Kent Group in 1972, is now showing signs of weathering. The protective building which the group arranged to have constructed over the kiln is now in an advanced state of decay. Happily, the Holwood Estate is now planning a new protective structure over it.
The great hill fort, which dominated the whole of West Kent from the Thames to the Medway, stands now in splendid isolation. William Pitt the Younger owned the Holwood Estate and he destroyed about two-thirds of the ramparts in his nocturnal landscaping activities. Even so, the remaining ramparts are very impressive with the deep ditches still forming formidable barriers. With some 2,200 years of silting in these light pebble soils the original profiles must have been very much steeper. In one place the original entrance can be seen though now heavily overgrown. Holwood House is now in private ownership and there is no access.-Even so, the trip proved very popular and could be repeated in a future year.
Holwood kiln (medieval)