Early to mid-C19 cast-iron milepost attached to an earlier milestone.
Reason for Listing
The milestone, situated on the A20 immediately south of No 476 London Road at Ditton, Kent is recommended for designation for the following principal reasons:
* Architectural Interest: a well-preserved example of a cast-iron milepost, probably early-C19 in date, attached to an earlier milestone;
* Historic Interest: as testament to the development of the national transport system, particularly of the turnpike system, and as a reminder of the different perceptions of distance in the pre-motor age.
* Group Value: one of a group of which two near-identical mileposts, each listed at Grade II, survive on this stretch of road at Ryarsh (NGR TQ6687058643) and at Larkfield (NGR TQ6998558314).
From the late C17 to the mid-C18 many turnpike trusts were established along roads connecting London with major provincial cities and ports. Milestones became prevalent in the mid-C18 when turnpike trusts were encouraged to provide them, the 1744 Turnpike Act making their provision compulsory on most turnpike roads.
It is thought that this part of the road from London to Folkestone and Dover, at Ditton, became a turnpike between 1750 and 1780. This cast-iron milepost is a remodelling of an earlier stone milestone. It appears in its current position on the Ordnance Survey map of 1869 and, therefore, is probably in its original location.
A V-section, white painted, cast-iron milestone, dating from the early to mid-C19 that is attached to an earlier painted milestone. On the head of the milepost, parallel to the road, the legend, in black-painted relief, reads 'To/LONDON/31/Ditton'. Below this on the east-facing angle the legend reads 'WROTHAM/7' and on the west face 'MAIDSTONE/3'.
Source: English Heritage
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.