About the Society

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The Horton Kirby & South Darenth Local History Society was founded in 1995 after the publication by the Parish Council of the Centenary Book.

Since then the Society has met regularly in the Village Hall and regularly publishes books and leaflets about the area.

Our meetings are held six times a year, on the second Monday of January, March, May, July, September and November, and start at 8pm, in the Jubilee Hall (to the side of the Horton Kirby Village Hall).

Visitors are always welcome to attend our meetings, and refreshments are available.


6 thoughts on “About the Society

  1. Pamela Vale-Taylor

    Good morning
    I grew up in Hawley, and attended Sutton-at-Hone Primary School, however I have always known that I was born (in 1950) at a Maternity Home in Horton Kirby (and thus my place of birth has always been stated as “Horton Kirby.”)
    I have in my head that it was called Riseley Nursing Home and I am wondering whether the building still exists today? I have a memory of being teased that I was “born in the stables of a big house” which could mean that the stables were converted into the maternity home, or just a tease from a big brother (who has now passed away.)
    If you can help with this query I would be most grateful.
    Thank you

    1. admin Post author

      Hello Pamela,

      Thank you for getting in touch. You are right in thinking you were born at Riseley Nursing Home, although I don’t know anything about rooms in the stables (I must try and ask some colleagues in the history society in case they know). The building is still there, it is on the corner of Eglantine Road and Saxon Place, opposite franks Lane. When I was a child (I am a Sutton girl, born in West Hill Hospital Dartford, Sutton Primary and then Dartford Girls Grammar, and still in the village) Riseley was a family home, lived in by one of my school teachers, a Mrs Gaylor and her family, with donkeys in the gardens. I am not sure if you would see Riseley properly on Google Earth, there are so many trees around the grounds, they would block the view. However, if you are ever in the area, it would be worth going to look at it from the road.

      Do get in contact, my details are Sarah Lewis, sarahvlewis@yahoo.com

  2. Alan Wise

    This is Alan Wise and I lived in Sutton-at- Hone for the first 13 years of my life. and now living in Cambrideshire.
    I’d like to ask a question on behalf of Michael Hyland, also of Sutton but now living in Australia.
    He has it in mind that a bomb destroyed a house opposite the Paper Mill entrance during WW2 but can’t find any evidence! Is there anybody out there who can give a positive reply for him and I can pass it on and set his mind at ease!
    I,m sure he would very much appreciate any information.
    Thank you in anticipation.

  3. Graham Jansen

    Dear Members,

    I am a member of the NWK FHS (member 6427) and having undertaken some successful research into those who fought for their Country during the First World War I have recently focused my attention on those listed on the First World War Memorial inside St. Mary’s Church, Horton Kirby. My reason for choosing Horton Kirby was because my daughters both attended Horton Kirby C. of E. Primary School. With 2018 marking 100 years since the end of the War I thought it would be a fitting time to look behind the names shown on the Memorial.

    The first name on the War Memorial is a Captain Ernest Ludlow of the Grenadier Guards. My immediate thought was that this must relate to Captain Ernest Ludlow MC of the Grenadier Guards killed during an air raid by Gotha bombers 16th February 1918 along with other family members. Professional soldier; personal bodyguard to the Prince of Wales (later Edward VIII); veteran of many campaigns with many honours. Memorial plaque by main entrance, Royal Hospital, Chelsea, London. Aged 41 – At rest: Brookwood Cemetery, London – Buried: Row Q Grave 180593.

    Further investigations have led me to believe there has been an error made and the Ernest Ludlow referred to should actually be Private 24202 Herbert Leonard Ernest Ludlow of the Grenadier Guards. He enlisted around Oct 1915 in London making him 18 years old at the time. After training in the UK, Herbert would have been sent to France to join his Battalion, which was part of the 4th Guards Brigade, 2nd Division. As one of the first British Expeditionary Force units to arrive in France, 2nd Division were not involved in any major operations in 1916 until the 14th July, where they were deployed at the battle of Delville Wood, part of the Battle of the Somme. The battle lasted until the 3rd September 1916. The 2nd Battalion lost relatively few men during the battle, however, from the 3rd September to 1st October, 252 men from the Battalion were killed in action as the Division pushed forward. On the 25th September, the battle of Morval began, with the 2nd Battalion heavily involved. 93 members of the 2nd Battalion were killed that day, including Herbert, aged 19 years.

    Herbert’s name actually appears on his mother’s headstone within St. John the Baptist Churchyard, Sutton at Hone.

    I was curious to know whether the Society were aware of the error made on the War Memorial?

    Kind regards

  4. Graham Jansen

    Thank you for your reply. I have since discovered that Captain Ernest Ludlow MC was born in Dartford and was baptized 13 Aug 1876 Darenth. He was the son of John Ludlow and Rosetta Ludlow (White) who married Dec 1858 Dartford.

    David Turner (NWKFHS) has drawn my attention to the Never Such Innocence – Sutton-at-Hone and Hawley in the Great War book by Stephen de Winton and Sarah Lewis, which refers to Private 24202 Herbert Leonard Ernest Ludlow, Grenadier Guards, on page 135. herbert is mentioned on his mother’s headstone in Sutton-at-Hone Churchyard, and was the nephew of Captain Ludlow who is commemorated on the Horton Kirby War Memorial. Herbert was born in Sutton-at-Hone, and the family were living at the Alms Houses at Sutton-at-Hone in 1901, and his father was working in the Paper Mills. by 1911 the family had moved to 19 The Brent, Dartford. Herbert was a former Dartford Grammar School boy.

    I am in the process of researching other names listed on the Horton Kirby Memorial, which might assist you with the forthcoming book.

    Kind regards

  5. Andre Drew

    Is there a record of the people that were born at Risely as I belive that a friend of mine was possibly one of the last. If there is no record can you tell me when the last birth took place there as a maternity home . Thank you.


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