White Horse of Folkestone


Brief Outline

  • The White Horse was constructed in 2003 on Cheriton Hill.
  • It was designed by local artist, Charles Newington.
  • It was inspired by the White Horse of Uffington.
  • It was created to celebrate the millennium.
  • The White Horse is about 100m long.
  • Shepway District Council have adopted the horse as their logo.
  • Trenches were dug and limestone and chalk slabs were cut and laid to construct the horse.
  • The site is part of an area of special scientific interest due to the wildlife and orchids that are found there.
  • Constructed by a large team of people which included the Gurkha soldiers stationed at Folkestone at the time.
  • It took about two weeks to construct.
  • The Friends of the Folkestone White Horse was formed in 2004 to help promote and look after the site.
  • A time capsule was buried on the site June 2004.


Images of the construction of the White Horse.


Images from www.hows.org.uk


Curriculum Links

Artist Study – Charles Newington


Charles Newington; Local painter, printmaker, draughtsman, illustrator and teacher.

“Inventing my own visual world has taken me on many different tracks, …Most artists, with maturity, find a recognisable signature style. I seem to have multiple artistic/creative  personalities.  I now live in Folkestone, and exhibit regularly in the Artist’s quarter while still spending as many of the winter months as possible in India. ”

Useful websites;

www.charlesnewington.com; There are several images of his work as well as a brief history about Charles Newington.  (Be selective about these images as some are inappropriate for our age group)

www.whitehorsefolkestone.co.uk; Lots of information about the history, the location and artist. (parts of this website are still under construction)

www.whitecliffscountryside.org.uk; Some information linked to access and   area of scientific interest.

www.photographers-resource.co.uk; Contains information about the            construction of the white Horse and how it was controversial.


Possible Art projects

Children to create their own White Horse interpretation.

KS1 / KS2

Sketching and landscape painting.

Using different media; string, paint, art straws, mosaics, pebbles (link to “Folk Stone” by Mark Wallinger, art on the Leas.) or sand (beach link using local    resources.)  These can be done as individual or group projects.

Symbols in Art
The horse has been used as a symbol of power, spirit, moving forwards, freedom, journeys and strength, to name a few.  Children can choose their own symbol that they would like to carve on to a hillside, givng reasons for their choice and create their own representation of this through art.


Carving lino; This can be used for printing on different backgrounds, possibly linking to the idea of pop art using vibrant colours and multiple copies.

Batik / Crayons; Using wax to make an outline on fabric or paper and covering with  washes.

Cross Curricular Links

Literacy;   The construction of the White Horse of Folkestone caused much controversy both locally and globally.  This is a great opportunity for a        debate , persuasive text writing as well as newspaper reports etc.

Was the White Horse a good or bad thing for Folkestone?

Useful Headlines;

White Horse May be Halted (08.05.03)  BBC News website

Chalk Horse for Entrance to the UK  (28.03.02) BBC News website

Europe says UK white horse illegal  (13.05.03) BB News Website

 Maths;  measuring – creating a scale model of the White horse.

Length (fore hoof to hind hoof) – approx. 93 metres / 306 feet
Height (nose to lower hooves) – approx. 48 metres / 160 feet
Number of slabs used, and number of stainless steel anchor screws – approx. 700
Average width of outline – 60cm / 2 feet
Area of ground covered by slabs – approx. 250 sq. metres / 2800 sq.ft.

Science;  The site of the White Horse is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).  This is an opportunity to look at the different plants that grow in this area from a science and art perspective.