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(Broadcloth and Agriculture)
Marden lies on the B2079 Goudhurst to Maidstone road. It is believed that
a church was founded here before the invasion by William the Conqueror in
The present church was built just before 1200 by the monks of Lesnes Abbey.
The windows which date from the 15th century are manufactured from some of
the best stones from the Boughton Monchelsea quarry.
In 1331 the export of unwashed wool was prohibited by King Edward III. He
encouraged weavers from Flanders to settle here, thus bringing their
weaving and dying techniques to England. Marden and some of its
neighbouring villages Biddenden , Cranbrook and Tenterden soon became
important centres of the Broadcloth manufacturing industry.
The village still keeps its stocks , originally located in the village centre
they were moved to the church to prevent vandalism.
Once the weaving industry had moved on, the village reverted to
its old agricultural heritage, but as time went on the villagers
became poorer, and many emigrated. In the early 1830's the population
attacked farms and the new machinery which they felt were taking
At the present time, Marden is mostly a commuter village with about 20% of its
occupants working in London, and travelling via the quick Ashford line into
the city, the remainder work in the surrounding area.
| Marden has quite a few shops and amenities, and a bus service runs
through the village from Goudhurst to Linton and then on to Maidstone .
The main line Dover to London train travels through the village,
providing a fast and regular link to the City of London. The
Eurostar service runs to Europe from Ashford , only about 15 minutes
away by train.
The nearest main shopping centre is at Maidstone , with a smaller one
at nearby Paddock Wood and Staplehurst .
| Marden is in the middle of the rich farmland of the weald, and has
many orchards, Oast houses and old buildings surrounding the village.
The centre of Marden is quite old and attractive with many buildings
built during the weaving era.
The village stocks are still visible outside the church, imagine being
locked into them for a number of hours, and pelted with rotten fruit and
vegetables without being able to escape.