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Kent Archaeological Review extract

News from the Groups --
Otford and District.
by Cliff Ward.
(Otford and District.)

A commencement has been made in visiting known sites to check on their present state, and to attempt to discover if any threat exists by way of development, roadworks, quarrying, or farming activities.

It has been reassuring to find that many of the owners are sympathetic towards these sites, and the majority remain relatively untouched. However, if the national rate of destruction is considered, it is a matter for speculation how long these sites will remain in the present undisturbed state.

Another task which ODAG has commenced is to locate material, including objects, reports, references and notes, which refers to excavated and partly excavated sites in the vicinity.

This is being done to facilitate the reappraisal of sites, for possible recommendation for scheduling and also for an overall pattern of site distribution.

An example of the sort of recapitulation possible, is the location of some hitherto unsuspected water colour drawings of painted wall-plaster from "Progress" Villa, Otford, which was partially excavated in the 1920s.

Some pieces of the painted plaster bearing an inscription are in the British Museum collection, whilst other fragments of the same inscription are stored in Maidstone Museum.

In view of the rather piecemeal excavations of the site and the excavators' note that some "heaps of plaster" had been left in situ, it is conceivable that some attempt at restoration might one day be possible on the lines of that carried out by Col Meates at Lullingstone.

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