Boxley (All Saints)
BOXLEY (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Hollingbourne, hundred of Maidstone, lathe of Aylesford, W. division of Kent, 2¼ miles (N. E. by N.) from Maidstone; containing 1398 inhabitants. An abbey for Cistercian monks was founded here in 1146, by William d'Ipres, Earl of Kent, who subsequently assumed the cowl at Laon, in France. Henry III. granted to the society the privilege of holding a weekly market, and the abbot was summoned to parliament in the reign of Edward I.: Edward II. resided at the abbey during the siege of Leeds Castle, at which time he signed a charter for the citizens of London. At the Dissolution the revenue was estimated at £218. 19. 10.; and the site, with a portion of the estates, was granted to Sir Thomas Wyatt, the poet. The abbey contained a celebrated rood, which, together with the image of St. Rumbald, was taken away, and publicly destroyed at St. Paul's Cross, in 1538: there are still some remains of the buildings. The parish comprises 5745 acres, of which 1100 are in wood. It is noted for the manufacture of paper of a superior quality. The living is a vicarage, valued in the king's books at £12. 19. 2.; net income, £834; patrons and appropriators, the Dean and Chapter of Rochester. The church is a neat small edifice, with a handsome square tower. An extensive rabbit-warren, part of the possessions of the abbey, lies beneath the chalk hill here; and there was another near Penenden Heath (about half of which is in this parish), but it has been brought into cultivation. A small stream that rises just below the church, and runs through the village, is said to petrify wood with an incrustation resembling brown unpolished marble.