A huge massive thank-you to all of you who helped us by filling out the questionnaire for the Council Grant. We’re really excited about launching the new not for profit company, Story Storks Heritage, and working with Kingston museum to explore Kingston’s heritage and then pass that on to the early years kids.
One of the reasons that we’re doing this project is that Kingston has a phenomenal history. So much has happened here. England started here! Wyatts rebellion used the bridge, a massive Penny Farthing race took place that will put the Surrey Classic to shame. There was even a woolly mammoth round the back of M&S! As big bad London expands Kingston is in danger of just becoming another suburb. It’s these stories of Kingston the town that will keep it unique and we want to share them. From a personal perspective, I moved to Kingston because it was close to town and it had a John Lewis. I’ll now be here forever because learning about the town’s history has made me realise what a unique and fantastic place this town is. I feel much more connected with it than I did before and I’m hoping that through Story Storks Heritage we can pass that feeling on to everyone who lives in the town, especially the kids.
So the answers!
1. Where is the Kingston Mosaic?
This one sparked debate amongst Team Story Storks! There is a mosaic on John Lewis down by the Riverside. However the mosaic being referred to here is on the back of BHS opposite Krish (a shop that looks like it just sells drug paraphenalia but is infact the best fancy dress shop in town!) It depicts the 7 Saxon Kings who were believed to have been crowned in Kingston.
2. Do you know why the 7 Kings car park is so named.
Because it is believed that 7 Saxon Kings were crowned here in Kingston. The town was probably chosen because of the bridge which was the only one for miles around and it’s proximity between the Kingdoms that were being united.
3. Do you know where the coronation stone is?
The coronation stone sits outside the council offices just next to the police station. Perhaps so that the police can guard it! It’s surrounded by railings containing 7 spikes, one for each of the Kings. There are plans to move it to All Saints church. It’s probably a bit too important to be left out in the rain!!!
4. Do you know who the first king of England was?
The first King of the English was King Athelstan. He united all of the separate Kingdoms and then kicked out the Vikings, thus becoming the first King to rule England as we know it today. He then went on to conquer Wales and Scotland. He did much more than just fight. He was prolific in pushing literacy, created a common currency and was the first monarch to be depicted with a crown on his head. I’ll be writing this story and telling it in workshops soon. It’s a story worth telling.
5. Do you know what was found under the Eden walk carpark?
Mammoth remains! Three of the teeth from the mammoth are in Kingston Museum!
6. Do you know what the three fish represent on the Kingston coat of arms?
They’re salmon. Many moons ago, at the time the coat of arms was created, there were three major salmon fisheries on the river.
The winner of the competition will be announced soon so keep checking your e-mail! In the meantime, be sure to tell your kids what the fish are every time you see them, why you’re parking in a car park called the 7 kings and that they’re treading in the footsteps of a woolly mammoth next time you head to Boots! Then get yourselves down to Kingston Museum and do the little spotters trail. I can’t recommend it highly enough. My eldest loves it so much we do it twice a month!!!