When approaching Folkestone by sea, the first thing you see is the white cliffs.  Of course, the famous white cliffs belong to Dover, but what people who are not familiar with Folkestone don't realise, is that those cliffs belong to Folkestone just as much as they do to Dover, and run right along the back of The Warren, and form the East Cliff.

The cliffs trace their origins to the Cretaceous Period, approximately 136 million years ago, when the area was submerged under deep tropical waters. Subjected to the great pressures of the sea, the emptied skeletons of coral, sponges and other small sea creatures turned to sediment  which began to accumulate on the ocean floor. By approximately 70 million years ago, this process had formed a mass of silica-specked chalk linking the island to the continent. Over time, owing to the exceptional softness of chalk, tidal forces eroded this land mass away to form the English Channel, an arm of the Atlantic Ocean that forms a channel between France and Britain.

The cliff face continues to erode at an average rate of one centimeter per year, although occasionally-most recently in 2001-large chunks of the edge, up to several meters at once, will fall into the channel with little warning. Visitors are therefore urged to remain at least five meters back from the edge.

Once again, if any of the photos remain blank, right click your mouse into the space, and click 'show picture', and it should come in for you.
1913
The Warren, (not named after me! In fact when I lived there, I was a Brown, then a Dyer), showing a steam engine running through.  I stayed away from there as a child, as it was frequented by adders!  Uggghhhh!!
This was Warren Halt.  Yes, trains actually stopped there!  Though why you would want to get off there, unless you were working on the railway line, I can't imagine!

Actually, the Warren used to be a very popular place for picnics and swimming, and I have decided that when I make the next trip, I am going to head down there and take a closer look.  (I am going to try to avoid the undergrowth though!)
The part of The Warren seen here is known as Little Switzerland - I think you can see why!
Another nice picture of a steam train chugging through The Warren.  With the sun reflecting off those famous white cliffs in the background
Warren Halt again, with a train approaching.

On the right you can see a picnic area.  I wonder why they had that so close to the station?  I wouldn't have thought the smell of those trains would have enhanced the taste of your sandwiches!
You learn something every day!  This is a 1913 picture of Warren Halt, but this time it shows another zig zag path, running from the line to the top of the cliff.
As I said earlier, I used to avoid the Warren, so had no idea it was there, but Alan Taylor tells me it still is, and goes up to the Old Dover Road at Capel-Le-Ferne and at the top there is a tea chalet.
The East Cliff, with the East Cliff Sands on the left.  Sorry these are so fuzzy, I had reduced them to about half this size on my old pages, and they don't enlarge again too well.

Gradually, I will get them all re-scanned again, but that will take time.
Oh my!  This is the spot where I arranged to meet my very first date.  He didn't show up, and I was heartbroken!  :-)  Good job my mother didn't find out, he was quite a bit older than me, and the East Cliff  is not exactly a good place to meet someone you hardly know!
What the heck was his name anyway? :-))
This card is of The Warren, showing the Halt and Abbotts Cliff.

When going to Dover by train the first tunnel you go through is Martello tunnel, which comes out in the Warren, the second tunnel is Abbott's Cliff tunnel, named after the cliff it goes through.
Since I started putting this page together, I have been to Folkestone and went for a walk from the Tea Chalet  part way down the East Cliff down to the old railway line.  However, I don't feel I walked down this zig zag path, because it didn't zig zag, and the chalet was definitely not at Capel-Le-Ferne, so maybe there are two chalets.
This is the Tea Chalet that I visited in 2005, except it looks more like a hut these days than a chalet. I got talking to the lady inside, who told me that there are still adders down below.  I went for a walk down there anyway, but watched the ground pretty carefully!

She said "Oh you don't have to worry, if you get bitten, you just have to get to a hospital, they will give you an injection and you will be fine, you won't die, you will just feel ill"

Excuse me?  And this is supposed to reassure me?
A 1930's view of the East Cliff, with the Pavilion, which is still there.

Please note how much grassy area there is in front of that hut in the centre of the picture.
Same area again, I don't know the year, but would guess it to be early 60's.  Beautiful rock gardens weren't they, now long gone because the same problem with erosion.

Notice the white horse of Kent in the upper left corner of this card.
I found this one very interesting.  It is called Martello Towers, Folkestone.  You can see three of them in the picture.

I checked out this wonderful Martello Tower website:
http://www.martello-towers.co.uk/1.htm  and found out that all three are  still standing.

  No. 1 is located on East Wear Bay, and has been converted into a residence,   No. 2  is also a residence, on East Wear Bay, and is difficult to be seen due to shrubbery and trees around it. 

The one I am familiar with is No. 3, now used as an interpretive centre, and is owned by the Shepway District Council.  There were 74 towers built originally, and around 9 of them were in Folkestone, many still standing, although derelict at Shorncliffe Camp.
Do check out that Martello website, it is fascinating!
Here is another one showing just how much of the East Cliff we have lost over the years.  It's frightening really.
A slightly fuzzy one of Little Switzerland in the Warren, showing a childrens' playground.  It seems to me that this must be where the current Tea Chalet is located.
This was the view I took from the Tea Chalet
This one of the East Cliff, this one shows you the type of cars being driven in 1958
This one of a train chugging through the Warren was sent to me some time ago by Sid Rowles, who told me that his great uncle Ted sent it when he was stationed in Folkestone during the war in 1915
This is the first photograph I have seen of people swimming at the Warren.  This was dated 1931
They obviously had many people swimming down there in those days, enough to warrant a bathing station for changing purposes.
And enough to justify a man in a boat to prevent people from going out too far and drowning.
Just look at the crowds of people that travelled on that train to and from Warren Halt.  They obviously appreciated this end of Folkestone far more than they do today
Now this is a path I wouldn't want to walk on!  Just look at the sheer drop from there, and no railing!  I very much doubt it would be there today, they would never allow the public to take such a risk.
This is the path I took when I walked from the Tea Chalet down to the railway line in 2005.  It was a very pretty walk too, lots of primroses, violets and bluebells on the way.

Did you know it is illegal to pick them nowadays?  Such a shame that today's children can't have the same fond memories I have of picking bunches of these flowers to take home to Mum.
A very old postcard showing a smugglers cave in the Warren.  I wonder if it is still there?
Getting ready to board the train and head back home
Was this an early version of a tea chalet I wonder?  Judging by the proximity of the zig zag path, it must have been close to the Halt.
Copt Point is the part of the East Cliff that juts out in this photograph
A 1923 view of the East Cliff and Warren.  What on earth does that woman have with her?  I thought at first it was a goat, but it looks too big for that doesn't it?  A cow with two heads?  Or has she just set up some kind of trestle for drying towels?
This was a view of the East Cliff area that I hadn't seen on a postcard before.  It was dated 1904, there are quite a lot of large homes in the area for the period aren't there?
This one, showing people walking on the road rather than the path for some reason, was sent to me by Tony Carr.  Great one, thanks Tony!
I left this one large because it is interesting.  What are these people doing?  Golf? Tennis? Putting greens?
This 1920 view of the Warren was described as Fossil Bay.  Anybody know if it is still called that?  Trevor Butcher mentioned this in his e-mail too, as follows:

"I do not know if the area around Copt Point was called fossil bay, but the fossils were small and almost black. The concrete dragons teeth anti-tank defences were bulldozed up from the beaches after the war to form an erosion defence."
A modern view of the harbour taken from the East Cliff.  This was sent to me by Chris Keller. Thanks Chris! :-)
This card was postmarked 1908, and the well was there then too.
Now isn't this a strange one?  I don't have a date for this, which is entitled East Cliff and Martello Towers.  It looks like there are four of them in the picture doesn't it?  I always thought there were only three in this area.  Can anyone shed any light on this?
I thought this was a modern aerial view of the harbour across the Warren.  However, it is not all that modern, because I can see ferries against the pier. The Hotel Burstin is there though.
Oh doesn't Folkestone have the best scenery in the world?  So many people who live there never even look at it, but just look at this view!  This photo was taken and sent to me by James Ashby of Luton.  Thanks James, it's lovely.  Is that your dog?  And there are those same tennis nets.
This photo was taken by Cliff Sherwood of the Virtual Tourist website (Check my links page for the address).

Know why he took it?  Because in the distance you can see the nudist beach, that's why!

I don't see anyone on it though, do you?
Remember I showed you the path that is now closed leading down from the East Cliff?  Well, not letting a little thing like that stop me, I squeezed through the gate and took a walk down to here.  If I hadn't, I wouldn't have seen these lovely flowers (right), they were growing all over the wall
I had seen these steps from above, and was very curious to see where they led.
Well, look at that!  Were the rocks there when they built those steps?  Or did they wash in afterwards?

They must have been some pretty heavy duty waves to move those boulders!
And it doesn't look likely that they will move out again in a hurry does it?

I used to enjoy hunting between these rocks when I was a kid, but they were pretty slippery just after the tide went out.
Back to the old - the very old - 1918 in fact, and it shows how the East Cliff looked before they built the Pavilion.
I don't have a date for this one, but it is also very old.  As you can see, the East Cliff Sands hadn't been developed yet.
This one was also taken in 1918, and shows a Martello Tower, and the entrance to the Warren.

I would guess by the way that man is standing with his hands on his hips, and the dog in the foreground is standing looking at him, that he wants the dog to come, and the dog has other ideas!
Ah yes, the Warren and East Cliff are both definitely two of Folkestone's most beautiful and natural areas
I did!  See below
I had an e-mail from a gentleman called Lee who tells me that the tower on the far right had something to do with the train tunnel which ran underneath.  He went on to say that although there are houses built on that site now, a few years ago, on that spot was a big ditch with a square concrete base at the bottom which had metal doors.  When the trains went under, you could feel them if you stood on it.

Thanks Lee!
I received an e-mail from Trevor Butcher, and here is what he said in response to my question about this photo:

"The people in the foreground are playing
golf on the course around martello no.3, and if you look
closely at the area at the bottom of the hill you will see
the two lines of tennis nets strung across the picture. I
remember the golf course and the tennis courts well from the 1970s.

Martello tower no. 2 is just to the left of the
picture, but you can see the slope up to it.

Are they tents between the toilet block and martello no. 1? Scouts?  Excavations for the Roman villa?"

There you go, one question just leads to another.  Thanks Trevor, if I get an answer to your question, I will add it here.
Trevor also confirmed this and so did Alan, so it must be true!
Alan Taylor tells me that this was indeed a tea chalet that was located near the bridge at Warren Halt.  He says it was run by the Marsh family until WW2.

I used to know a Dave Marsh, I wonder if they were his ancestors?
The photo above and above left are from the fifties when the rock garden was in place in front of the East Cliff Pavilion.  I wonder what that structure was on the right in the picture above?  It's not there now.  The photo on the left is a little earlier than the other two I believe.
What a hive of industry the Warren tea chalet was in 1938, you could also take your tea in the gardens then.  Mind you, I think you still can now, but it isn't as spread out as this.
Mike Vernol sent me this one.  It shows a Martello tower, and the tea gardens of the chalet.  I don't have a date for it, but there is that well thing again, this time it has a big stick attached, a pump maybe?
Again, a very old and faded photo showing lots of people walking through the Warren.
  On the night of 19 December 1915 the one and three quarter mile length of track supporting the main railway line slipped at The Warren.  It was estimated that 1.5m tons of chalk slipped or fell creating dramatic changes to the landscape that can still be seen today.   Because of the Great War the whole thing was hushed up for fear of the Germans getting to know that the main means of moving troops from London to Dover was out of action.  For the rest of the war troops were moved via Faversham to Dover.  The line was not relaid until after WWl.   This photo is looking away from Folkestone towards Dover.
This card was mailed in 1916, but the photograph had to have been taken before then, because you wouldn't have seen any trains on this line between the end of 1915 and 1918 or 1919.  Read the explanation to the right and you will understand.
This one however was taken before that happened, in 1913.
And this art card from 1923 shows how recreational that area was after the first world war.
This is a bit later, in 1936 in fact.  Shows someone doing a little camping.
Oh I love this photo, and it dates right back to 1905.  The pond you see here is no longer there, it has long since been filled in from landslides.  Wasn't it pretty?
The Chalet again, are those tables or seats I wonder?
This one dates right back to 1904, and depicts the Picnic Ground.  I would guess that the house- like structure in the background is a bathing cabin, and the Halt would be in the centre, where you can see the roof of the station, but I wonder what that round structure is to the right of it?
A nice clear one of the bathing cabins.  I would guess this to be in the 30's wouldn't you?
Another look at that pond, this time it is 1906, which means it could have been taken the same day as the 1905 card above!  That's the way it is with postcards, you only have the date they were mailed to go on.
No date for the one above, but the skirts are shorter, which means later.
Here we are in the 1960's, and this is the style of caravan that was popular at that time. 
If you have your own memories of Folkestone, be sure to share them with us by jotting them down in the book below
This page updated August 14, 2016
And this is what you see from off to the left of the chalet.  How would you like to wake up to that view each morning?
Here comes a train from Dover.  This is a lovely coloured photo, even though it was dated 1908
The White Cliffs Countryside Partnership is doing a lot to preserve the natural beauty of The Warren for both the wildlife down there and people.  To find out more, please check their website HERE
This photo of the same area was taken in 2005.  I think that is the same hut, but look right, and you will see quite a difference.
The front of the hut (filled with graffiti you will notice) now drops sharply away, with steps going down.  right below that is a footpath going down the cliff which used to lead down onto the prom, but has been closed due to cliff erosion.
I suspect the colours in this one have been added afterwards, I don't have a date for it, but would guess the early 1920's
Left this one large because it is beautifully detailed and clear for a 1913 card.  The man probably lived in the house, which was also the Tea Gardens, and as you can see, kept chickens.  I am a bit puzzled by the well in the foreground though.  Surely any water brought up from there would be sea water wouldn't it?  I must admit I have never had a well though, so I don't know if it is possible to find fresh water in chalk cliffs on the edge of the sea.
This old card shows the Zig Zag path leading down to Warren Halt
The rocks above are in the area called Bakers Gap, which was the landing point for CEGB's (Central Electricity Generating Board) 2000 MW Cross Channel Cable Link with France.
I took this one in 2006.  Note the Pavilion was advertising its whereabouts to low flying aircraft at the time! :-)
Another old one showing the Zig Zag path leading to Warren Halt
And another view of the pond in this one on the right.
The next four beautiful modern images were taken by Malcolm Jeffery.  Thank you so much for sending them Malcolm.
A sight that will bring back fond memories for many of you.  It was taken around 1967 by Richard Farram, who sent it to me saying he used to drive down from Bexley on weekends and holidays.  His tent is the last one on the right nearest the camera, right next to the old wood framed blue Morris Traveller.
A novel 1906 Christmas card
Oh look!  The pond had a name.  It was huge wasn't it?  I wonder why it was called the Roach pond?  I hope it wasn't a hangout for them!
Did you know the Warren also had a rose garden at one time?  I certainly didn't.  Looking at the cars, I would guess it to be in the 40's.
Now I hope that is a groin going down into the sea, and not a sewage pipe - you decide.
As you can see, the pond had a very useful purpose back in 1909.  I understand that cattle have been reintroduced to the Warren now, I wonder what they do for fresh water?
Two very nice photographs of Warren Halt and the Zig Zag path.  The left was posted in 1910 and the right in 1924.
A photo of Warren Halt right after it was first built
This was the Warren Tea Gardens in 1908.  The tea room that you can see behind the trees used to be the Warren Inn until it lost its liquor license.  All kinds of skullduggery used to go on here because it was too remote for the police to monitor, so drinking out of hours was pretty normal.  They tried hard to get the license back, because it was a lucrative business in that location, but to no avail.  If you would like to read all about the goings on from newspapers of the day, you can find it all here:  Even More Tales From The Tap Room
Here is an older version of the Tea Chalet that stands in this location today.
It looks rather different to these two photos on the East Cliff these days doesn't it?  However, the Martello Tower remains constant, so it's easy to get a handle on the areas we are looking at.  The card on the left is from 1915, and the right one was posted in 1926.
The newest land in Folkestone is Samphire Hoe, if you dig a tunnel, you have to do something with the stuff you dig out, and  Samphire Hoe was created from the diggings on the English side.  It is becoming a beautiful place to go, preserving the natural beauty of the area, and they have built a huge sea wall to protect it.  It's also a fantastic place to walk your dog.  The day I went, it was so foggy, I couldn't see the towering cliffs directly behind me at all, when it started to lift, they looked so majestic, I just had to take a photo.
If you would like to visit the Hoe, it is located between the Warren and Dover, and you can access it by car from the Dover Road above.
Kai from Capel-le-Ferne left me a message in the guestbook to say the pond was so named because of all the Roach (Rutilus Rutilus) fish that used to be in there.  He went on to say he used to fish there all the time when he was a kid, and is disappointed that it has gone now.

Thanks for the information Kai - so should I remove this disgusting roach?  No, I think I will leave it there for a little while, just because I can!
This one gives you a better idea of how colourful the East Cliff was when the rock gardens were there.  Gone now due to erosion.  This lovely image was sent to me by Tony Carr - thank you Tony.