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10 Things You Didn’t Know about Rochester

From James Bond to Kelly Brook

Rochester in Kent seems to be like most other towns in the UK but has a few interesting things that maybe the majority of you didn’t know – especially if you are not from the area or just coming for a short break. Here are 10 short facts that perhaps you didn’t know about Rochester.

1. Home to 2nd oldest, continuously running school in the World
Rochester Cathedral established the school back in 604A.D. and is now known as The Kings School.

2. A favourite place of Charles Dickens
The Medway towns and Rochester in particular were favourite places for the author who used many local buildings as inspirations for his works.

3. Rochester has produced 2 martyrs
The first was St. John Fisher who was executed by King Henry VIII for refusing to sanction his divorce from Catherine of Aragon and the 2nd was Bishop Nicolas Ridley who was an English Reformation Protestant and as such executed by Queen Mary.

4. First Plane to carry a torpedo was built in Rochester
The first plane to carry a torpedo was built close to Rochester Castle by the Short Brothers during WWI. The plane was a Short Admiralty, Type 184.

5. The 1965 Film ‘The War Game’ was set in Rochester
The film depicts the town being destroyed by a nuclear strike.

6. Kelly Brook went to Delce Junior School in Rochester
The actress and model went to school in Rochester for a short time.

7. Rochester gets a mention in the 1959 James Bond film ‘Goldfinger’
Bond refers to the “inevitable traffic jams on the Strood side of Rochester Bridge” when travelling on the A2.


8. Rochester is the built on the lowest bridging point on the River Medway
There has been a settlement on the site before Roman times. This is probably because it is the easiest place to cross the river.

9. The chapel at St Bartholomew’s Hospital can be traced back to 1078
The chapel is built on the site of the Ancient Priory Hospital.

10. Rochester changed from a city to a town in 1998
After long being referred to as a city, Rochester reverted back to being a town in 1998. Many residents will be shocked at this as its popularly still refereed to as Rochester City – after all it has a cathedral!



Dan is Managing Director for Inspire Kent and Choice Group Asia Media Group, which includes some of the biggest media for foreigners in Thailand.

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