INTRO. CHRONICLES. SOCIETIES. PARISH. VILLAGE. CHURCH. PEOPLE.

A History of YALDING, Kent, England



1827
Dingley Dell.

Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens was set in Kent of 1827, and several villages have claimed to be the location of Dingley Dell.
Yalding is the prescribed fifteen miles from Rochester, complete with a Manor Farm, although it was called Fielders Farm then. One main character of Dickens, Mr Wardle fits well into the local name of Warde, although Dickens had a relative at Dartford, a William Ward, who it is understood visited Yalding to see possible relatives and probably invited Dickens to join him.
This William Ward helped to sponsor Dicken’s admission to the British Museum reading room, and his brother Samuel Ward secured positions of reporters for Dickens and a cousin Tom Charlton. A Charlton family certainly lived here in what is now Charlton Farm, which one passes from the village on the way to Manor Farm. Another character was a Mr Miller and certainly we had at least one such name, who lived at Downs House and owned Woodfalls Farm, adjacent to Manor Farm.
Yalding had a very keen cricket club at the time, being active since 1798, playing all the major Kent teams, and the story match against Muggleton is thought to possibly be West Malling. Dickens very often produced names similar to those of original situations, and from Yalding which had previously been spelt Yelding, you can see is an anagram of Dingley.

Does one need any more proof that Yalding was actually Dickens' Dingley Dell.