Shoreham is the remote village which the painter Samuel Palmer chose as a refuge from London's pollution. He was the leader of a group who followed William Blake and called themselves The Ancients . Palmer's father, also called Samuel, rented the Water House by the river.
The Church of St Peter and St Paul in Shoreham has many interesting features, including an outstanding wooden rood screen spanning the width of the building and a stained glass window by the Pre-Raphaelite artist Burne-Jones.
Shoreham Memorial Cross is a striking feature on the hillside above Shoreham Village and below Meenfield Wood. It was cut into the chalky hillside in 1920 as a memorial to the local men killed during World War One. It is 100 feet in length, and can be seen for many a mile.
Otford goes back to the sixth century when the Anglo-Saxons called their settlement Ottanford ('Otta's ford'). Offa and Canute fought battles here. The village pond, where the duckhouse is Britain's smallest listed building, was the main source of water for local people until the early twentieth century.
The Bull pub in Otford has magnificent fireplaces, brought there from the ruined Otford Palace. Opposite the Bull is the Arts and Crafts-style Church Hall, designed by Edwin Lutyens who waived his fee, as it was commissioned by his brother William who was then vicar of Otford.
Otford Palace once occupied four acres, but it fell into decay after Archbishop Cranmer was forced to surrender it to Henry VIII in 1537. A few fragments remain and are on open view.
Construction of St Bartholomew's Church, Otford, began in 1060, with the tower being added in around 1185. The church contains large marble memorials to Charles and David Polhill, great-grandsons of Oliver Cromwell.
The Otford Solar System is a full scale representation of the spatial position of the planets at a moment in time (midnight on 01-01-2000) and with the inclusion of four of the nearest stars located in museums around the world, it can lay claim to being the largest scale model of its type in the world. The model was constructed by the village as a Millennium Project, built to a scale of 1: 4,595,700,000. At this scale, the Sun is a little larger than a football - 30.3 cm across - and at the centre of the model, it can be found at the rear of the village recreation ground, a disc mounted on a concrete pillar. The earth is the size of a small ball bearing - 0.3 cm across - located 32 metres from the Sun. Jupiter, the largest of the planets is 162 metres away, the size of a small ping-pong ball - 3.1 cm across. To be found at various locations in the village, all mounted on similar pillars, are Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto. Mars - due to its location being between two football pitches - is represented by a ground level disc. The Otford Solar System provides visitors of all ages with an extraordinary insight into the size of the solar system and the larger universe in relation to our small planet.