Pembury History

Pembury on Old Maps

The movement and migration of a village  -  Pembury has drifted over the last few centuries.

This is a brief example to illustrate several features of old maps:
  1   General inaccuracies and inconsistencies
  2   Variations in spelling.
  3   Position variations due to village migration.

This page features a gimmick called 'mouse-over' by which the image changes when the mouse is placed over the image -
     no clicking involved.  It is used here to highlight the point of interest. 
For 'mouse' please read 'finger' or 'pointer' or whatever wavy waggler you may be using on your viewing device -
      it might even be by telepathy in the decades following this writing.

The maps shown below are not to the same scale.

This map shows Pembury, before 1575, to the east of the main London to Hastings road.
Pepenbury is the original settlement at low ground, close to streams and ponds.
The Hastings Road runs across a ridge of high, dry ground to the west of the village.
The more durable ridge road inevitably became known as the 'High Street'.

A map of the 1640s from a survey of the 1580s.     London to Hastings road not shown. 

A map of 1699  showing Pembury east of the Hastings Road.
The small settlement 'Copping Crouch Green' is shown on the Hastings Road.
This part of the Hastings Road was attracting more traffic to the popular 'Tunbridge Wells'.
It was also seeing greater traffic from London to Rye (for commerce) and from
Hastings to Tonbridge and beyond (for fish deliveries).
 Woodgate is now the major junction for the Maidstone - Tunbridge Wells road

A road map of 1720 showing the road through Pembury.
( see mouse-over change for inclusive notes )

A map of 1753 showing both settlements with Pembury to the east
and Pippenbury Green on the Hastings Road.
Note the increased settlement along the Hastings Road.
This map also shows a 'Halfway House' north and south of Pembury.
These were refreshment inns for the traveler and their inclusion indicates their growing importance.
The northern one is the 'Vauxhall Inn' and the southern is the 'Blue Boys'.

  A map of  1760 only showing 'Copenbergreen' on the Hastings Road
and no mention of Pembury.
Note the high ridge on which Pembury sits is shown as a feature.

A map of the 1780s showing Pembury and Copingcrouch Green.
Old Pembury also having the name 'Lower Green'.
The detail is good enough to show the two settlements.
It also shows the Hastings Road running on the ridge of high ground.
This survey was accurate enough to show the old smithy house on the village green.

A Map of the early 1800s showing 'Pembury Green' on the Hastings Road.
The old settlement now referred to as Lower Green.
Today the road linking the two areas is 'Lower Green Road'.
Earlier references to Halfway House here: 'Horseshoe' and 'Blue Boys' inns.
Milestones shown on this map.     What was 'Bog Hole'?
Until recent times the Blue Boys was a Public House serving the A21 road.
In 2008 it became an Indian Restuarant and closed in 2009.
In 2021 it is part of a Burger King fast food retailer.      

A map of the 1830s with no mention of Pembury.

A map of the 1890s showing Pembury and Pembury Green (with the new Upper Church)

A map of the 1890s showing Pembury firmly on the Hastings Road.
(the old settlement is indicated by the blue circle)
Note the development of the east-west road from Tunbridge Wells to Maidstone via Pembury.
Note the station at Paddock Wood called 'Junction'  and the abandoned branch line to Goudhurst and Hawkhurst. Tonbridge also shows the abandoned east to south link.

Compiled by Tony Nicholls