Tuesday, 28 June 2011


The stretch of coast between Margate and Herne Bay is dominated by one particular landmark: the ruined St Marys Church at Reculver. The twin 12th century towers of the church have been designated a Scheduled Ancient Monument and make an impressive sight viewed from a distance. As I type this I am looking at an amazing photograph in the area tourist brochure of the towers silhouetted against a flaming red sunset. The land around the church is the site of a Roman fortress, called Regulbium, built in the 3rd century AD to protect the northern end of the Wantsum Channel, the stretch of water responsible for making Thanet an island in the old days. It was in 669 that King Egbert of Kent founded a monastery and church inside the fort. There is a lasting legacy from the Romans in the form of the plants called Alexanders which grow at the base of the towers and sport yellow flowers and celery-flavoured stems. Reculver Country Park, incorporating Bishopstone Cliffs, is visited every winter by thousands of migratory birds. The Park has been designated a Special Protection Area.

Map of the area.

Reculverphoto © 2008 Mike Lawrence | more info (via: Wylio)


  1. As usual a great write-up, thanks.
    We visited Reculver as part of my civil engineering course twenty years ago so that we could study some good examples of Roman concrete near the church. It is amazing that the concrete has survived for so long.

  2. Thanks for the comment, glad you found the post interesting. It's amazing, isn't it, just how much history there is everywhere you look in this country.