In Kent there is only one
road—the so-called Watling Street1a —that can definitely be
called a Roman main road. Other roads or tracks which may be particularly
identified within the county are, for the most part, tributaries of this
main thoroughfare, and of little more than local importance.
(1) The London road focuses the cross-channel
traffic at Canterbury, and thence follows the strike of the Tertiary rocks
to Rochester. From that place, the lowest point at which the Medway could
conveniently be bridged, it ran parallel to the Thames to London. It will
be convenient to consider first the four branches which served the coastal
ports, and joined the main road to Canterbury.
1 This section
has been written by Mr. Ronald F. Jessup, who desires to acknowledge
valuable assistance from Mr. O. G. S. Crawford.
1a When the name of Wading Street was
extended to this road is not known; probably it was used by medieval or
later antiquaries who held it to be a continuation of the Wroxeter (and