What was hopping down in Kent? - Introduction
Every September when the hops were ready to be picked, farmers would write to workers (usually women and children who didn’t have permanent jobs) in Kent, London, Sussex and East Anglia. They were invited to come down to Kent, stay in huts on the farm and work in the hop gardens for 6 weeks. For many Victorian Londoners, living in a dirty, polluted city, this was seen as a holiday in the country. The same families would come 'hopping down in Kent' year after year.