Behind every county is a past full of dark and strange stories, and Kent is no exception.
Our reporter Oliver Kemp did some digging to discover some of the wildest tales, from the bottom of the coast all the way to the edges of North Kent.
Since Julius Caesar landed on the Kent Coast to invade Britain around 55 BC, the geography of the county has given it a unique place in the history books.
Seen as the gateway to the British Isles, legend has it that Vikings arrived on the coast years after Caesar and were fought and pushed back in Sandwich, only to eventually besiege Canterbury in 1011.
Our county has a rich heritage of dangerous stories buried beneath the surface which are easy to forget about.
Leonie James, lecturer in early modern history at the University of Kent, said: “It’s easy to get bored of the place that you have lived in for a long time and think nothing exciting happens here, but it has got this really interesting and strange history.”
Canterbury’s burning Protestants
During the dark reign of Bloody Mary I in the 16th Century, the vengeful Queen earned her title by persecuting Protestants up and down the country.
Of the 300 people who are known to have been subjected to such a horrendous end, 70 of them happened here in Kent, and 41 of them in Canterbury alone.
Prof James said: “They would be public burnings so people would see them - Joe Bloggs could turn up and watch their neighbour burnt at the stake.
“It wasn’t an entertainment but people did watch which is fairly awful if you think about it.
“If you were at protestant you really had to watch out and be careful.”
If you visit Martyr’s Road in Wincheap today, you’ll be able to see a memorial for those who met their unfortunate end, with all the names of the people who died there.
Guy Fawkes might have used Faversham gunpowder
Several small gunpowder production houses were brought together into one single plant called ‘Home Works’ which was taken over by the government in 1759.
According to Annie Petrie, author of The Story of Kent, by the turn of the century the powder mills in Dartford had become the most extensive in the county.
She wrote: “The Dartford mills were surrounded by large earthen embankments to minimise the damaging effects of accidental explosions, which were a regular feature on the site.”
The dangerous work of gunpowder production caused 16 separate explosions in 1833, which destroyed a number of mills, killed eight workers and three horses.
Although it cannot be proven, there are also theories that Guy Fawkes himself used gunpowder from Faversham in his 1605 plot to blow up Parliament.
Prof James said: “Given Faversham's proximity to London and the fact that it was relatively easy to transport it by water, we suspect that some of it might have come from there.”
The Biddenden Maids were a pair of 12th century twins who were apparently joined at the shoulder and hip, living in the village of Biddenden, near Ashford.
Born in 1100, twins Eliza and Mary Chalkhurst were born into a very affluent family.
They lived until 1134, when suddenly Mary died.
Instead of being separated so she could survive however, Eliza tragically refused medical help, saying: "As we came together we will also go together."
The sister died six hours later.
After dying they left five plots of land known as the bread and cheese lands to the village when they died, and for centuries it has been custom to hand out bread and cheese to the poor and needy in the village every Easter.
Thanet's Isle of Death
Going back even further in history, the Isle of Thanet is home to more Bronze age burial mounds than anywhere else in the country.
The Bronze Age ran across the period between 3000 BC – 1200 BC and the burial mounds would have been easy to spot far out to sea.
Although it's easy to access these days, Thanet used to be cut off from the mainland, so was an actual island.
Coincidentally - or maybe not - an Ancient Greek myth talks about a dark place called Ynys Thanatos, or the Isle of the Dead.
As the tale goes, bodies were rowed across the sea in empty boats in the pitch-black of night, and would return empty in the morning.
According to the legend Britain was home to the dead, so you will have to decide for yourself how much truth there is in the story.
Disaster at Dungeness
In the dead of night in 1873, a ship called The Northfleet was anchored during terrible weather, when it was crashed into and sunk, killing 293 people.
The ship left Gravesend bound for Tasmania, full of cargo to build a railway and hundreds of emigrants on board.
As it anchored 5km off the shore of Dungeness, a Spanish steam ship called the Murillo smashed into the side of the boat before floating back off into the darkness.
It only took half-an-hour for the boat, packed with equipment and people, to sink to the sea bed.
Months later the offending ship was stopped in Dover and the officers were punished, having caused the death of so many innocent men, women and children.
If you visit St Nicholas Church in New Romney, you'll see a window in the south wall commemorating the lives lost that day.
Chatham's murderous Victorian painter
Charles Dickens wasn't the only artist wandering around in Medway in the Victorian age.
Richard Dadd was a paranoid schizophrenic painter known for his meticulous detail and strange supernatural visions, with some describing his paintings as hallucinatory.
Born in Chatham, the man claimed his inspiration came from delirium, a sudden confusion as a result of being ill.
Unfortunately his delirium eventually got the better of him.
Convinced his father Richard was the devil in disguise, Dadd slit his throat and left him for dead in Cobham Park in 1843.
Dadd eventually ended up in Broadmoor psychiatric hospital, where he continued to paint his otherworldly art.