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Temple Manor and the Heritage Summer trails.

 

Published 9th August

 

With the Summer Holidays now well underway you can take part in our Summer Heritage trails! With Temple Manor being one of the attractions it is being opened for an additional day on Thursday 11th of August (10am-6pm). Come by and add that additional badge to your trail collection, or if you haven't started just yet where better than to start! Collect them all and get your ultra-special Sea Plane Badge and also be entered in for a chance to WIN a bundle of family tickets for loads of attractions across Medway.

 

Learn more about our Heritage Summer Trails here.

The famous manuscript The Textus Roffensis

Early English laws preserved in Textus Roffensis at Rochester Cathedral added to UNESCO register

Published 20th July

 

A collection of early English law codes preserved in a twelfth-century manuscript known as Textus Roffensis has been added to the UNESCO Memory of the World UK Register. The register honours documentary heritage of national significance including the Death Warrant of King Charles I, Magna Carta and the Churchill Archives.

Textus Roffensis was compiled in the early 1120s by a monk of St Andrew’s Priory at Rochester Cathedral. The first half of the manuscript has been accepted onto the register; it contains copies of pre-Conquest laws written in Old English (Anglo-Saxon), many of which are unique to Textus Roffensis. Included among the unique texts is the earliest known set of English laws known as Æthelberht’s Code, dated to about 600 and from the Kingdom of Kent. It is also the earliest datable work of any genre composed in the English vernacular. Two later seventh-century Kentish laws, Hlothere and Eadric’s Code (c.679-c.685) and Wihtræd’s Code (695), are also unique to Textus Roffensis.

There are in total 35 early English law codes in the first half of the manuscript including laws by Alfred the Great, Æthelred ‘the Unready’ and William the Conqueror. The latest of these is the oldest surviving copy of the Coronation Charter of Henry I, the fourth son of William the Conqueror. Written in Latin, it spells out the responsibilities and limits of the King toward the Church and the king’s noblemen. As such, it has been interpreted as a precursor to Magna Carta of 1215.

Five hundred years of laws are preserved in this manuscript giving fascinating and unique insights into the lives of those peoples who inhabited an evolving England, and its adjoining regions, from the beginning of the seventh century to the beginning of the twelfth: the lives of women, men and children, the free and the unfree.

Dean of Rochester, Philip Hesketh, says “Textus Roffensis is without question one of the most important of all medieval British manuscripts. It contains the largest medieval collection of early English law codes written in the original Old English. Complied at Rochester Cathedral between 1120-23 it was at the very heart of the emerging monastic community. Returned home to the Cathedral in 2016, Textus now resides, once again, at the heart of the Medway towns and is displayed, free of charge, in the ancient crypt. This announcement by the UNESCO UK Memory Register rightly acknowledges that Textus is one of Britain’s greatest treasures”


The UNESCO Memory of the World programme was established by UNESCO in 1992 to protect and catalogue significant documentary heritage from being lost to future generations.

Textus Roffensis is on display in the crypt of Rochester Cathedral and available online at Rochester Cathedral.

Medway Gaming and Creative Festival is right around the corner

 

Published 27th June 

 

This July we will see the return of the Medway Gaming Festival. On the 16th and 17th July, the Historic Dockyard will be host to a plethora of games from virtual to tabletop. With e-sports tournaments, tabletop wargames, countless videogames, cosplay and more there is something for every kind of gamer out there. Check out more information about this gamer's paradise here.

Armed Forces Day 25th June

Published 22nd June

 

This Saturday will see the return of the Armed Forces today. Taking place at the Great Lines Heritage Park between Gillingham and Chatham and will see bands, performances, marches, and demonstrations. To check out more about this exciting event click here. We hope to see you there!

Medway Pride Festival is back!

Published 7th June

 

Returning for 2022 is the Medway Pride Festival and it's coming back bigger and better than ever. Taking place on August 20th in Rochester there will be live music and performers across the day. You can read more information here, and additional information will be added as it is announced. 

Gaia Opens at Rochester Cathedral

Published 25th May 2022

Luke Jerram's new exhibition Gaia has just opened at Rochester Cathedral yesterday. As the personification of Earth, Gaia is a three dimensional replication of our Earth. A specially made surround sound composition by BAFTA award winning Composer Dan Jones is played alongside the sculpture. 

Visit here to get your tickets.

Platinum Jubilee Press Release

Published 19th May 2022

Be part of a national lighting of beacons, watch live coverage of the royal celebrations from Rochester Castle Gardens, see a rare spectacle of one hundred boats sailing up the River Medway and take part in one of the many family activities happening across Medway, including a Corgi treasure trail and bunting making workshops.

 

See our detailed guide to everything that’s happening in Medway for the Platinum Jubilee. 

Gordon Newton- Founder of Sweeps Festival talks about its origins and what we can expect this year.

Published 26th April 2022

The founder of Sweeps festival answers some questions about this iconic festival that he established more than 40 years ago. He also tells us about what we can expect for this year's celebrations which is less than a week away!

Read more about it here.

The Leaves of The Trees by Peter Walker is now open

 

Published 26th April 2022
Rochester Cathedral has opened its new temporary exhibition as a reflective memorial to all those who lost their lives in the Coronavirus Pandemic. Peter Walker is a renowned sculptor and artist and has created 5000 metal leaves with the word hope inscribed on them to create a simple, yet emotional piece of art which allows us to reflect on the last two years. Visit Rochester Cathedral today to see this moving piece of art. The exhibition shall run from the 24th of April until the 22nd of May.

To find out more about this exhibition click here.

Gamers rejoice, Medway's Gaming Convention is returning for 2022

Last years Rapture Gaming Festival setup

Medway Gaming and Creative Festival returns for 2022

Published 15th March 2022

After last year's majorly successful Rapture gaming convention, we are pleased to announce the return of this gaming festival. With plenty of different activities, games and technology to try for gamers of all experience levels. There will be special guests, competitions, gaming experiences, exhibits and even a cosplay masquerade.

Explore what else is on offer here.

This year there will be lots of different events to commemorate the Queen's Platinum Jubilee

Platinum Jubilee Celebrations

Published 7th March 2022

This year marks the Queen's 70th year on the Throne. This is a momentous milestone which has never been celebrated before in the UK. To celebrate this important and historic moment, Medway Council has recently announced its plans and activities to commemorate the Queen's Platinum Jubilee. Various activities will be taking place across Medway, from Street Parties to a full-fledged River Pageant. Even some of Medway’s annual events will have a Jubilee twist like the English Festival and Sweeps Festival. 

Find out more about the activities taking place.

Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall at Rochester's Guildhall Museum

Royal visitors to Medway's tourist attractions

Published 2 February 2022

Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall received a warm welcome at two Medway tourist attractions today.

Her Royal Highness visited Rochester to open a new permanent exhibition, The Making of Mr Dickens, at The Guildhall Museum whilst His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales visited the Historic Dockyard Chatham.

Touring the new exhibition, which opens to the public on Tuesday, 8 February, Her Royal Highness learned about the relatively-unknown side of Dickens’ life including his happy and adventurous childhood in Chatham, the sad days spent living hand to mouth in London, and his return to Higham, near Rochester, from Dr Jeremy Clarke, the council’s Heritage Education Officer and Dickens expert.

Her Royal Highness was greeted by characters in Victorian costume from The Rochester and Chatham Dickens Fellowship and joined by Year 5 pupils from St Margaret's at Troy Town C of E Primary School who were learning about Dickens.

The schoolchildren were inspired by a reading of Great Expectations by Her Royal Highness and Gerald Dickens, Charles Dickens’ great, great grandson.

His Royal Highness is patron of the Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust (CHDT) and was shown the new Diving Deep: HMS Invincible 1744 display – the dockyard's temporary exhibition for 2022. Her Royal Highness also met members of the Medway Aircraft Preservation Society. 

Luke Jerram's Gaia will now be at Rochester Cathedral from 24 May-12 June 2022

Gaia at Rochester Cathedral postponed until May

Published 14 January 2022

Luke Jerram's Gaia will now be coming to Rochester Cathedral in May 2022.

After careful consideration the cathedral has made made the difficult decision to postpone displaying Luke Jerram’s Gaia that was scheduled for February.
Gaia will now be on display from the 24 May-12 June. Details on how to see Gaia and our events programme will be released soon. 

The new stretch of the England Coast Path at Grain

Images courtesy of Birdwise North Kent

Opening of a new stretch of the England Coast Path

Published 12 January 2022

A new stretch of the England Coast Path has been officially opened between Grain, in Medway, and London by Natural England. 

The nearly 50-mile route forms a continuous walking trail on the south bank of the Thames to the coast at Grain on the Hoo Peninsula.

This new trail covers a wealth of unique environments. As you set off from Grain you can enjoy views across to Sheerness on the Isle of Sheppey, to Southend-on-Sea, and the confluence of the Medway and Thames as you stroll along the wild reaches of the Thames Estuary. The estuary marshes and mudflats support of a wealth of wildlife of national and international importance. 

Cllr Phil Filmer, Medway Council’s Portfolio Holder for Frontline Services, said: "Medway is proud to have two National Trails in our area including the England Coast Path, which is the longest, continuous, coastal trail in the world. Medway is also home to the Thames Path extension from Greenwich to Grain, making this trail a ‘Source to Sea’ walking route.

"We are delighted to have been part of this historic project that gives people even more opportunities to connect with nature and explore news pathways and views. As well as giving Medway residents access to new trails, we look forward to welcoming new visitors to Medway where they can enjoy 1,900 hectares of rich and varied greenspaces."

Find out more about the England Coast Path.  

Ninja Warrior UK has opened at Chatham Dockside

Ninja Warriors flock to Chatham

Published 4 January 2022

Adrenaline seekers have jumped at the chance to test themselves on Medway's latest attraction.

The indoor obstacle challenge that has taken the nation by storm on our TV screens has come to life at Dockside, Chatham

The new Ninja Warrior indoor obstacle and assault course has opened on the former Dickens World site and is already proving a real hit.

Former international footballer and presenter of the ITV show Chris Kamara was there for the official opening. 

The adventure park is suitable for both adults and children aged 5+). Children under 12 need an adult on site and those aged 12-16 must have a waiver signed by a parent or guardian.

Find out more

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