Though Temple Manor’s site occupation occured since roman times, the temple is a construction built by the Knight Templars in the 13th century and its located to the west of the River Medway. The Temple had the strategic function to provide safe lodging for dignitaries travelling between Dover and London.
The manor is actually one of the finest example of a suggestive, medieval building, that depicts astonishingly the architectural art of that period, including precious and fascinating traces of wall paintings in the first floor hall. An inspiring garden surrounds this property located out of time.
After the Anarchy of 1135 to 1153, the Crown was in debt to the Knights Templar and probably this explains why the temple was built for them in 1159, after order by Henry II.
It’s known there were less than 15 actual Knights Templar in the United Kingdom, along with maybe 140 brethren who handled administration. The structure didn’t had permanent guests’s presence, and was meant to provide suitable lodging for dignitaries travelling between London and the continent via Dover.
A succession of owners followed and as the fortunes of the estate declined, parts of the property were purchased by the City of Rochester in the 1930s. Inside the municipality there was a debate over its future, and though the council planned to use the surrounding site for industrial development, a committee was formed to preserve it and finally the Manor was recognized as a building of historical interest, therefore saved from monetary speculations. Unfortunately, after Second World the building fell into neglect and was for to vandalism for years.
Just in 1950 the Ministry of Works intervened and restored the building after much of the original structure collapsed due to neglect. Two years of works were necessary to restore the property as we can see it today.