Christ Church geographers celebrate International Map Year with Kent Life

15 January 2016

Geographers at Canterbury Christ Church University are collaborating with Kent Life magazine to celebrate International Map Year 2016.

Each month during 2016, the magazine will publish a map extract and a short article, produced by Kent Life and Christ Church academics, celebrating Kent's landscape. Each piece will explore the significance of maps and mapping for our county by focusing on a different historic or contemporary map, each positioned on the geographic centre of Kent.


© Geological Survey of England and Wales 1:63,360, Sheet 288 (1959, Crown
Copyright (expired)), Geography Resource Centre map collection, Canterbury
Christ Church University.

Sarah Sturt, Editor of Kent Life, said: “We often refer to the ‘heart of the county’ but have you ever stopped to think: where exactly is that? Somewhere around Maidstone you’d think, but town or countryside? And how do you work it out?"

Determined to find out, Kent Life approached Canterbury Christ Church University’s Peter Vujakovic, Professor of Geography and Mr John Hills, Research Fellow and Geographic Information expert, both in the School of Human and Life Sciences, to take up the challenge.

Professor Vujakovic said: “Imagine cutting out a map of Kent and trying to balance it on a pin. When it is perfectly balanced, you would have found the county's centre of gravity. We actually used a geographic information system to undertake the task and identified the centre as being just to the south east of Lenham, and on the Stour Valley Walk, based on the current map of Kent with Medway.”

As well as the map articles, Kent Life’s chief photographer Manu Palomeque will travel to the spot at approximately the same time every month to record the changing landscape.

Follow the articles in Kent Life magazine each month, February’s edition will be available to purchase from local stockists and online from 21st January.


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Last edited: 04/12/2017 23:57:00