The notes upon which this outline is based were assembled as input to the Exhibition of Canterbury history from 1600 to the present day, held 16 November to 19 December 2012 in the Sidney Cooper Gallery, Canterbury.
The threat of Napoleonic invasion in the late 18th century led to a massive increase in troops stationed in Kent cities and towns. Numbers in post at the three large barrack sites in Canterbury exceeded 3000 in each of the early years, and fluctuated around 2,000 for the following century or so. Despite the scale of this influx, to a city showing a total civilian population (with suburbs) of between eleven and twelve thousand, little has been written on how this military presence affected city life.
The aim of this summary has been to give some idea of the scale and location of the various barrack sites, and to suggest how this influx impacted on the social, economic and political life of the city.
KEY WORDS: Canterbury CHAS barracks military cavalry Blondin