Beyond Rochester, the River Medway suddenly loops to the south, then veers north again, at which point we reach Upper Upnor, with its castle just to the north. Upnor Castle was built in Elizabethan times with the purpose of defending ships on the River Medway. However, the castle failed utterly in its duty when the Dutch managed to sail right past it with the intention of crippling the English fleet, which they succeeded in doing, to the point of capturing Charles’ flagship, “The Royal Charles”. In 1662 the diarist Samuel Pepys visited Upnor, but was not impressed, commenting that there was “great disorder by multitude of servants and old decrepid men, which must be remedied”. The village of Upnor was a riverside resort until the 1930s, when World War Two intervened, causing the beach to be closed. However, the village itself remains a charming place to visit with its weatherboarded cottages – there are actually two parts to the village, Lower Upnor and Upper Upnor. Upnor Castle is now looked after by English Heritage.
Map of the area.
photo © 2003 Chuck Andolino | more info (via: Wylio)