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Burham


Burham

Burham (Kent)
Burham

Burham shown within Kent
Population 1251
District Tonbridge and Malling
Shire county Kent
Region South East
Constituent country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Police Kent
Fire Kent
Ambulance South East Coast
European Parliament South East England
UK Parliament Tonbridge and Malling
List of places: UKEnglandKent

Coordinates: 51°19'47?N 0°28'59?E? / ?51.32971, 0.48308Burham is a village and civil parish in the Tonbridge and Malling district of

Kent, England. According to the 2001 census it had a population of 1,251. The village is near the Medway towns.

Memorial on Blue Bell Hill
Memorial on Blue Bell Hill

The history of Burham can be traced to Roman times. AD43 saw the Battle of the Medway at the crossing point on the River Medway, where Burham is now, when the invading Roman legions, advancing west across Kent, were confronted by a massed army of the ancient British tribes. The Roman victory altered the course of history in Britain, and the remains of Roman buildings have been found in Burham and the neighbouring village of Eccles.

There has been a Settlement in Burham since Saxon times, "ham" being the Saxon word for "settlement" — the "Bur" part of the name comes from "burgh", or borough, referring to the borough of Rochester. The name "Burham" means "the village near the borough".

In the 11th century Burham belonged to Leofwine Godwinson, brother of King Harold. He was killed along with his brother at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. The village is mentioned in the Domesday Book compiled in 1086 for William the Conqueror. It is listed as having six sulings (about 240 acres) of land. There were two major farms, 15 "villeins" each farming 30 acres and 20 "borderers" each farming about five acres. There was a church and a mill with woodland sufficient to support 20 hogs.

About 1830 Burham became a "cement village" on the Medway, after the discovery of the manufacturing technique for Portland Cement (so called because of its resemblance to Portland stone).

By 1841 the village's population had grown to 380 and increased to a maximum of 1,725 in 1901. Today it is about 1,300.

In July, 1998, the Kent Air Ambulance helicopter, returning from an emergency call in Rochester, crashed in woodland near Burham, after hitting power lines. All three crew — the pilot and two paramedics — were killed.

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