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 June 8

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The county known as the Garden of England has been associated with a whole host of A-list stars over the years.

From the corners of Folkestone to the heart of Tunbridge Wells, Kent has links to many famous names.

There are, of course, several celebrities who have made their links to the county well known.

Some are born in Kent, some have been educated in Kent and some have kept their Kentish past a hidden secret.

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And looking at all the A-list stars associated with the county, there are many big names which might take you by surprise.

From BAFTA winners to gold medallists, Kent has links to a whole host of famous names.

Here are 30 of the most known stars with ties to the county.

Sir Mick Jagger – Dartford

Mick Jagger performing with The Rolling Stones

Mick Jagger performing with The Rolling Stones

Born in Dartford in 1943, the Rolling Stones singer attended school in the area.

It was also where he first met Keith Richards, another member of the band.

However, it was a lucky encounter at Dartford Station years later which brought the teens back together and saw them form a generational band which would dominate the pop music scene.

David Bowie – Maidstone, Folkestone and Bromley

One of Pat's photos, of musical hero David Bowie

One of Pat’s photos, of musical hero David Bowie

Throughout the early 1960s, Bowie lived in a flat in Maidstone.

He lived with six other members of his band called The Manish Boys, who were also from the area.

Bowie’s mother, Margaret Mary “Peggy”, also has links to the county as she was originally from Folkestone. The family, however, moved to Bromley in 1953 which is where Bowie attended Bromley Technical High School.

Sir Roger Moore – Gravesend

Roger Moore

Roger Moore

The legendary James Bond actor is believed to have lived in Shorne, a Gravesend village, sometime between the 1950s and 1960s.

The actor also lived in a mansion in Bexley with his second wife Dorothy Squires in the 1950s, and also spent time in Tunbridge Wells.

Orlando Bloom – Canterbury

Canterbury's very own elf - Orlando Bloom in action as Legolas

Canterbury’s very own elf – Orlando Bloom in action as Legolas

The actor, best known for his role as Legolas in The Lord of the Rings and Will Turner in Pirates of the Caribbean, attended three Canterbury schools.

It is also known locally that Bloom enjoys visiting Canterbury’s Mexican restaurant Cafe Des Amis.

Ellie Goulding – Canterbury

Ellie Goulding

The hit singer was another A-list star to have been educated in Kent.

Ellie Goulding studied drama at the University of Kent before being spotted in a university talent contest.

She told the BBC: “People on the university’s drama board were very supportive, telling me they couldn’t stop a student who wanted to perform.”

Paul Hollywood – Ashford and Wingham

Paul Hollywood

Paul Hollywood is best-known for his role as a judge on hit TV show Great British Bake Off.

He listed his Wingham four-bedroom home on the market in 2016 for almost £800,000.

He now lives in the Ashford countryside, following a split from his wife Alex.

Paul O’Grady – Aldington

Paul O'Grady has an adorable love affair with border collie Charlie

Paul O’Grady has an adorable love affair with border collie Charlie

Dog-loving comedian Paul O’Grady has lived in Aldington for more than 20 years.

He has a Georgian farmhouse, and rumour has it that he also has a stylish home near the seaside in Deal.

Alan Carr – Aldington

Alan Carr’s Epic Gameshow from last year

The comedian has previously hinted that he may have moved to Kent.

During an appearance on ITV’s The Jonathan Ross Show, Carr appeared to confirm the news by stating he has moved to a farm with husband Paul Drayton.

He also discussed the pair’s neighbours – Paul O’Grady and Julian Clary – who we known live in Aldington.

Noel Fielding – Deal

Noel Fielding as Vince Noir in The Mighty Boosh

Noel Fielding as Vince Noir in The Mighty Boosh

Noel Fielding was rumoured to have bought himself a place in Deal in 2018.

The Bake Off, Mighty Boosh and Nevermind The Buzzcocks star was seen visiting local shops and spending time by the seaside in 2018, sparking rumours he is now based there.

He regularly shows off his art in a gallery in the town too.

Keith Richards – Dartford

The Rolling Stones have an infamous history with Sussex

The Rolling Stones have an infamous history with Sussex

Richards first properly met Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger at Dartford train station over 50 years ago.

The pair were travelling their separate ways, with Jagger off to the London School of Economics and Richards on his way to Sidcup Art College.

Jo Brand – Tunbridge Wells

Comedian and television personality Jo Brand officially opened the Salomans Centre for Applied Psychology in Tunbridge Wells on Wednesday.

Comedian and television personality Jo Brand officially opened the Salomans Centre for Applied Psychology in Tunbridge Wells on Wednesday.

This comedian has lived in Tunbridge Wells for a long period of time.

In 2014, Jo was awarded an honorary doctorate from Canterbury Christ Church University in 2014, for her work raising awareness of mental health issues.

Jo explained: “I love Tunbridge Wells.

“I had a brilliant time in Tunbridge Wells and I lived and worked here for years. It is very nice to be back.

“Those bars were a big part of my social life – but that’s usually what happens when you’re a student.”

Dame Kelly Holmes – Hildenborough

Kelly Holmes celebrating winning the 1500m event at the 2004 Olympics in Athens

Dame Kelly Holmes, originally from Hildenborough, famously won a gold medal for both the 800 and 1500 metre events at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens.

Holmes also hit local headlines a few years ago after getting stuck in local M25 traffic.

Venting her frustrations on Twitter, she said: “So what happens when you’re meant to be somewhere an hour ago and can’t because there’s a two hour delay with a standstill, nowhere to go, nowhere to divert, in bright red trousers, in a bright blue car, Kelly Holmes, and you want the loo…desperately.

“Cry!”

We’ve all been there Kelly!

Sid Vicious – Tunbridge Wells


Sid Vicious was famously a member of punk rock band the Sex Pistols, in place of Glen Matlock who had fallen out of favour with the group.

He grew up in Tunbridge Wells, living in the town between 1965 to 1971, and attended Sandown Court School – now The Skinners’ Kent Academy.

Pixie Lott – Bromley

Pixie Lott at the MTV EMA awards

The pop artist was born in Bromley in 1991.

Pixie Lott had six top 10 singles and three chart-topping songs including hit single ‘All About Tonight’.

Jools Holland – Rochester

Jools Holland

Jools Holland

Jools home in Rochester is actually Cooling Castle’s farmhouse, and the nearby barn is used as a wedding venue.

The singer-songwriter had been locked in a dispute with the barn following reports of loud noises coming from the venue.

Holland moved into the area in 2002.

Miriam Margoyles – Dover

Miriam played Professor Sprout in the Harry Potter films

Miriam played Professor Sprout in the Harry Potter films

Miriam Margoyles has been famous for decades and is best known for her role playing Professor Sprout in the Harry Potter films.

The BAFTA award-winner has a house in St Margaret’s, near Dover.

Phil Vickery – Folkestone

Born in Folkestone in May 1961, Phil Vickery is rated one of the top chefs in Britain

Born in Folkestone in May 1961, Phil Vickery is rated one of the top chefs in Britain

Phil Vickery is rated as one of Britain’s top chefs.

He was born in Folkestone in 1961 and has trained in the Lake District before working at Gravetye Manor and Restaurant 74.

Phil has appeared on cooking programmes such as Ready Steady Cook and also This Morning,

He has also written numerous cookery books.

Bob Geldof – Faversham

Sat 29 Nov 2008. – Switching on of Margate Christmas Lights by Bob Geldof, The Piazza, Margate Old Town.

It’s fair to say music superstar Bob Geldof is Faversham‘s most famous resident.

Bob made the headlines in 2015 for offering to let three refugee families stay at his Kent home, although it was not actually confirmed whether he did follow through.

Mike Nolan – Broadstairs

British pop group Bucks Fizz, (clockwise from top) Bobby G, Cheryl Baker, Mike Nolan and Jay Aston

British pop group Bucks Fizz, (clockwise from top) Bobby G, Cheryl Baker, Mike Nolan and Jay Aston

Mike Nolan was famously part of ’80s pop group Bucks Fizz.

The Broadstairs resident won the 1981 Eurovision Song Contest and achieved 20 UK top 60 singles including three chart-topping hits.

Pete Tong – Dartford and Rochester

DJ Pete Tong

Pete was born in Dartford in 1960 and was educated in Rochester.

He later became a DJ and promoter at the Kings Lodge club in West Kingsdown where he was responsible for breaking classics such as ‘Expansions’ and ‘Groovin on a New York Afternoon’.

Len Goodman – Dartford

Len also backed the Mirror and Age UK campaign to keep the free licence, which rises from £150.50 to £154.50 in April

Len also backed the Mirror and Age UK campaign to keep the free licence, which rises from £150.50 to £154.50 in April

The ex-Strictly Come Dancing judge runs a ballroom dance school in Dartford.

Goodman is also understood to be residing in the county.

Lee Ryan – Chatham

Lee Ryan, from boy band Blue, was born in Chatham

Lee Ryan, from boy band Blue, was born in Chatham

Lee Ryan was born in Chatham and is most famous for being one of the members of hit boyband Blue.

The band represented the UK in the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest and came in 11th place. Which isn’t bad when you consider the dire, last place effort in 2021.

Blue sold around 15 million records worldwide, and have achieved three number one albums.

James and Ola Jordan – Gillingham

James and Ola Jordan

James and Ola Jordan have been open about their struggles to conceive

James Jordan, born in Gillingham, is a ballroom dancer and choreographer.

Ola Jordan, James’ wife, turned professional in 2000.

James has also had stints on hit UK TV show Big Brother, where he finished in third place in 2014. He also participated as an All-Star in the nineteenth series, where he was evicted in thirteenth place.

Shane MacGowan – Tunbridge Wells

Shane MacGowan is best known as the lead singer of The Pogues

Shane MacGowan is best known as the lead singer of The Pogues

Although Shane MacGowan was born to Irish parents, the location of his birth was Pembury, near Tunbridge Wells.

The singer of The Pogues attended Holmewood House School in Langton Green.

The band are best-known for their hit Christmas single featuring Kirsty MacColl, Fairytale of New York.

Sir Michael Gambon – Meopham

Michael Gambon as Dumbledore

Michael Gambon as Dumbledore

This star of Dennis Potter’s TV dramas and hit Harry Potter films lives in Cobham on a part-time basis.

As grand as the house might be, surely it can’t compete with Hogwarts!

Tamer Hassan – Bromley

Tamer Hassan attends European premiere of “The Dark Knight Rises”

Best known for his role as Danny Dyer’s opposing leader in The Football Factory, Tamer lives in Bromley.

The actor also plays the role of Khal Forzo in Game of Thrones.

Tamer’s daughter Belle also rose to fame in 2019 when she appeared on UK TV show Love Island.

Kate Bush – Bexleyheath

Kate Bush, known for the hit song 'Wuthering Heights', was born in Bexleyheath

Kate Bush, known for the hit song ‘Wuthering Heights’, was born in Bexleyheath

One of the most successful British artists of all-time, Kate Bush was born in Bexleyheath in 1958.

She is best known for hit songs Wuthering Heights and Babooshka.

Norman Cook (Fatboy Slim) – Bromley

Fatboy Slim, performs on Brighton Beach as part of the Big Beach Boutique

One of the most famous DJs in the UK, Norman Cook, also known as Fatboy Slim, was born in Bromley in 1963.

His hit songs include ‘Praise You’ and ‘Right Here, Right Now’.

Oli Sykes – Ashford

Oli Sykes performing on stage with his band Bring Me The Horizon

Oli Sykes performing on stage with his band Bring Me The Horizon

Front man of the band Bring Me The Horizon and creator of clothing company Drop Dead, Oli Sykes was born in Ashford.

The band’s album That’s The Spirit debuted at number two in the UK album chart.

The baby from the Teletubbies – Chatham

Teletubbies baby sun

One of the most-seen faces on British TV, Jess Smith was the chuckling baby sun on hit kids TV show Teletubbies.

She was based in Chatham, and studied dance education at Canterbury Christ Church University.

Original posted at www.kentlive.news

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