MEDWAY VALLEY RAILWAY LINE
Greyed out stations no longer exist
Paddock Wood to Maidstone line was opened in 1844 as a single
track branch line from the London to Ashford main line. A
second track was added 2 years later.
The Strood to Maidstone line was opened in 1856 running from the Strood terminus on the North Kent line.
Today the route between Paddock Wood and Strood is known as the Medway Valley Line. During the rush hour high speed trains operate to and from London St. Pancras calling at Snodland and Maidstone West.
The line runs along the valley floor never far from the river Medway. From Strood one first encounters a post industrial landscape which is being transformed for living and recreation and thence through very attractive countryside to Paddock Wood.
The late 20th Century witnessed a rapid decline in industrial activity. Exploitation of the geology was the main driver for industry. Quarrying yielded chalk which was used for cement and lime. Sand, gravels and stone were in abundance. Clays were used in cement, brickmaking and pottery. The paper industry was first founded on the abundance of pure water from the many chalk streams and wells and provided the early power to drive the mills. Engineering was founded on agriculture.