Welcome to 3. Loose Area Guide
Loose is a pretty little village around two miles south of Maidstone, located at the head of the Loose Valley which together make up the Loose Valley Conservation Area. The village has an interesting history, and is presently home to approximately 2,277 residents, a selection of respected schools, and several picturesque walks, stunning original architecture, a charming stream running through it, and the 13th century All Saints Church.
Originating in Saxon times, it is believed the name of Loose could be reference to the main occupation of its residents historically. Loose is the Old English word for pigsty, so it may be that once upon a time this was the prime concern of the village inhabitants. However, the Loose stream has been key in ensuring the village’s survival and prosperity, with its fast-flowing waters providing the necessary power to run the mills found along its banks. Consequently, a huge period of growth during the industrial revolution followed as the village along with Boughton Monchelsea and Bockingford developed around the seven mills, creating the developments on their journey to becoming the geography of those places as they are today.
In the village itself, the Brooks Path is a picturesque walkway along the Loose Stream that joins the two ends of the village, dividing the mill pond which once fed the village mill. All Saints Church in the Diocese of Canterbury overlooks this section of river. The Reverend Richard Boys was vicar here and chaplain of St Helena during Napoleon Bonaparte's exile on the island. He is buried in the churchyard.
To the east of the village is the Loose Viaduct, attributed to Thomas Telford and built in 1830 to carry the Maidstone to Hastings Road (the present day A229) across the Loose Valley. New Line Learning Academy is a secondary school located in the village. In the centre of Loose Village there is a large 14th-century building, Church House.
The world-famous "Gonzo" illustrator Ralph Steadman lives in Old Loose Court, just outside the parish and the 'Beechgrove Garden' (BBC Scotland) presenter Carole Baxter was born there. The novelist Ernest Elmore (who also wrote as John Bude) lived in Loose in the 1930s. The artist and calligrapher Mildred Ratcliffe (1899-1988) retired to the cottage at 1, Mill Street, in 1959. She painted several the village's buildings.
As well as beautiful properties Loose is also home to this fabulous academy. They are an academy with a clear commitment to the highest of expectations and achievement for all, with an excellent team of committed staff and outstanding facilities.
Their ambition is to ensure that all their students achieve their potential in order to secure their future employability within a safe, healthy and supportive environment. They also aim for all their students to develop as confident, courteous, and capable young people. They work hard and expect their students to work equally hard to achieve these goals.