An excellent and very informative talk was given
on 20 April by Clare Graham, lecturer and member
of the Jane Austen Society.
Clare told us about Jane's many links with Kent,
starting with her ancestral family in Horsmonden.
Jane's great grandmother Elizabeth Austen was left
penniless with six sons to support, and in 1708
she took up the post of housekeeper to the headmaster
of Sevenoaks School, Elijah Fenton, with the proviso
that her sons be educated there free of charge.
Jane's great uncle Francis Austen lived at the
Red House in Sevenoaks and became very rich.
She stayed with him as a child, and in later years
often visited her brother Edward in his fine house
at Godmersham in East Kent. 'Kent is the place for
she wrote to her sister Cassandra while staying
'Everybody is rich there.'