A thousand years later, the Normans chose the same site for a new cathedral and castle, both built under the supervision of Bishop Gundulf, the architect of the Tower of London.Rochester’s strategic importance as a river crossing ensured that it frequently found itself caught up in the military upheavals of the Middle Ages.William, a baker from Perth in Scotland, was travelling on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land when he was murdered near the city.
Charles Dickens lived in nearby Chatham as a child and came to know Rochester well.He returned to the area as a successful writer in 1856 when he bought Gad’s Hill Place at Higham just three miles away and he was to spend the last 14 years of his life there.Individuals can register up to three locations, either by county/municipality, zip code or specific address, or any combination of those three options, for which they would like to receive relocation alerts.You may also call the toll-free telephone number if you choose to search the registry that way.Many of Rochester’s buildings are instantly recognisable in Dickens’s books, especially in , his last, unfinished, novel.
Needless to say, Rochester makes the most of its links with the great author – there are plaques on many of the buildings that featured in his works, a ‘Dickens Discovery Room’ in the Guildhall Museum and many of Rochester’s shops and cafes bear suitably Dickensian names.
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Download the Audio guide (Right-click and select ' Save as') If one place can claim to be truly ‘Dickensian’ it has to be Rochester.
The balustrade of the original bridge now runs along the esplanade above the river.
A Saxon cathedral was founded near the site in 604 but the present building was begun by Bishop Gundulf in 1080.
But there’s more to Rochester than these impressive literary links.