Trosley Country Park

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Visit Trosley Country Park and walk the North Downs to see the spectacular views.

Park summary

Green Flag Award
  • About the park

    Trosley Park covers 170 acres of beautiful woodland and chalk downland on the North Downs and provides some spectacular views.

    Map of Trosley Country Park (PDF, 973.4 KB)

    Once part of the Trosley Towers Estate, Trosley Country Park is now home to a rich variety of wildlife, and a mixture of woodland and open chalk grassland slopes.

    The chalk grassland at Trosley is classified as a Site of Special Scientific Interest, while the grassland supports an array of butterflies every summer, including the Chalkland Blue.

    There are 3 waymarked trails – the blue route trail leading over the downland is very steep in parts, while the red route is much gentler.  The yellow route is an easy access trail suitable for buggies and wheelchairs. All provide spectacular views over the downs. There's also an outdoor trim trail should the steep paths not prove tough enough.

    For the more adventurous, the park is also a good base to visit the Coldrum Stones, an ancient listed monument of 15 sarsen stones.

  • Find us

    Waterlow Road
    Vigo Village
    Meopham
    Kent
    DA13 0SG

    Telephone: 03000 41 18 11

    Email: kentcountryparks@kent.gov.uk

    Plan your journey using public transport on Traveline

  • Parking and season tickets

    Pay and display:

    • Monday to Friday: £1.50
    • Weekends and bank holidays: £2.00

    Free parking for season ticket holders.

    There is plenty of parking available with 55 spaces on hard standing surface and 25 additional spaces on a grass area.

    Blue Badge holders may apply for concessionary parking by calling 03000 41 72 72. There are 2 disabled spaces.

    Coach parking

    Coach parking is available at the park and must be pre-booked in advance by calling 03000 41 47 47.

    It costs £5 per day.

  • Opening times

    Opens: 9am

    Closes: dusk or 9pm (whichever is earlier)

    Closed on Christmas Day

  • History

    Trosley Towers

    Trosley Country Park was once part of the Trosley Towers estate.

    In 1870 Sir Sydney Waterlow bought large areas of land, including the village of Fairseat and a major section of Stanstead, to form his estate.  The areas were linked by a small bridge bearing the family crest over Trottiscliffe Road, which can still be seen today.

    In 1887, he built Trosley Towers mansion, on the crest of the North Downs, to the east of Trottiscliffe Road. Two drives approached the house, and it was surrounded by wooded grounds. Later, other private drives were constructed, including Hamilton Drive which still survives within Trosley Country Park and runs from the site of the old house to Commority Road.

    When Sir Sidney died in 1906, the estate passed to his son Philip. When Philip died in 1931, the estate was sold off.  Some of the estate houses were bought by tenants - one of these was Pilgrims House with six acres of land, at the bottom of Trottiscliffe Road, which sold for £600. Trosley Towers and the surrounding woodland were sold to Mr E. E. Shahmoon in 1935.

    In 1936, Mr Shahmoon demolished Trosley Towers and built Hamilton Lodge, along with adjoining stables.  One story suggests that the lodge and stables were built to accommodate the Shah of Persia and his racehorses on his visits to England.  

    World War II

    The whole area was still owned by Mr Shahmoon when it was taken over by the army in 1942, and Hamilton Lodge became the headquarters of the army brigade that was stationed here.

    The land that now forms the park was part of an officers' training camp throughout the war.  Training consisted of lectures in a variety of subjects - tactics, map reading, field craft, camouflage and the use of a variety of weapons including grenades and mortars.  A climbing wall, concrete lookout platform and pumping house are still visible today.

    After the war, the land became derelict.

    Creating the park

    Kent County Council purchased the site and opened the 170 acre Trosley Country Park in 1976.

    The amenity block (with a public toilet facility, offices and store area) was built in 2004.  It has sweet chestnut (Castanea sativa) timber cladding from the local trees in the park.  The block also has a sedum roof (made of living vegetation) and rainwater drainage system recycled into the toilet flushing systems. The building won the Public Building category of the 2005 Kent Design Awards.

    In 2011, a new visitor centre was constructed, including a café and meeting space.  The building featured similar sustainable facilities, including a rainwater harvesting system, green roof and a log boiler providing heating to the building using timber from the surrounding woodland.

  • Park management

    This park is managed by the Kent County Council Kent Country Parks team. Contact the Kent Country Parks team.

What's on

  • 3 Sep
    More dates...

    Summer Holiday Activity Trail

    Manor Park Country Park

    Explore the park following our self-led activity trail and see what you can discover about the park. All completed trails will receive a small prize.

  • 3 Sep
    More dates...

    Summer Holiday Activity Trail

    Shorne Woods Country Park

    Explore the woods following our self-led activity trail and see what you can discover about the park. All completed trails will receive a small prize.

  • 24 Oct
    More dates...

    October Half Term Activity Trail

    Lullingstone Country Park

    Follow the clues, answer the questions and complete the trail to receive a prize. Trail sheets avaliable from the Visitor Centre between 10am and 3pm.

  • 24 Oct
    More dates...

    Autumn Half Term Activity Trail

    Shorne Woods Country Park

    Explore the woods following our self-led activity trail and see what you can discover about the park. All completed trails will receive a small prize.

All events at our parks

Facilities

  • Eat and drink

    Café opening hours

    1 March to 31 October - 9:30am - 4.00pm

    1 October to 28 February - 9:30am - 3pm

    Food

    At the Bluebell Café you can try the local, seasonal produce.

    The menu includes homemade snacks, light meals, cakes and even home-made dog biscuits for canine companions.

    The café also serves ice creams, soft drinks and fair trade tea and coffee.

    Contact Bluebell Cafe on 01732 820315 or bluebelltrosley@gmail.com for more information on what is on offer.

  • Walk

    Walks

    The site has 3 walking routes marked on the Trosley Country Park map (PDF, 973.4 KB).

    The red route is 2.5 miles, 4km long. It is a flat way-marked route through the woodland, giving far reaching views of the Weald, with seats and woodland sculptures along the way.

    The blue route is 2 miles, 3.2km long. A steep, hilly walk across the chalk downland, incorporating part of the North Downs Way.  During spring and summer, the downs are full of wildflowers.

    The yellow route is 1.5 miles, 2.4km long. This easy access route is ideal for visitors with pushchairs or wheelchairs. A trim trail is marked on this route, where you can exercise on the equipment.

    Find other walks in the local area on the Explore Kent website

    Dog walking

    Dog waste bins are available throughout the site. 

    Dogs must be on leads in the car park and close to the café area. 

    A tap and dog bowl are available for use at the café area.

    Easy access paths

    The yellow route is an easy access route through the woodland which also provides spectacular views over the Downs.  The paths are mainly flat, but with some surfaced slopes to navigate.  In winter, parts of the route can be muddy.  There are no steps.

  • Play

    Forest Fun is a great play area for under 11's.

    The play area at the side of visitor centre is on level ground, with a wood chip surface and surrounded by a fence but can be accessed through a gateway.

  • Fitness

    Run

    There are Run England 3-2-1 routes marked throughout the park

    Trim trail

    There is a trim trail at Trosley with 10 stations.

  • Toilets

    Toilet facilities are available at all times when the park is open to visitors, even if the café is closed.

    There is a unisex accessible toilet adjacent to the main visitor centre which is open at all times.  These facilities can be reached via easy access paths and do not require a Radar key to access them.

  • Other facilities and activities

    Horse riding

    Experience woodland and chalk grassland terrain along the horse route. This includes a mixture of flat waymarked routes, steep descents and climbs, and incorporates part of the Pilgrim's Way.

    Follow the horse route on the Trosley Country Park map (PDF, 973.4 KB).

    Geocaching

    Find out more about geocaching, sign up to create an account and find geocaches at the park.

    Orienteering

    For more information on orienteering, please contact Clare Collings on 03000 411811.

    Accessibility

    Read our accessibility information for Trosley Country Park (PDF, 22.8 KB).

Country Parks @Kent_cc

01 Sep

#Pipistrelle #bat spotted at Shorne Woods & Tawny Owl spotted in Randall Wood at Shorne Woods! #parks http://t.co/33XJh9v42R

Outdoor Learning

At Kent Country Parks we offer outdoor learning for all ages and abilities, whether you are visiting one of our outdoor learning centres, or we are bringing our outdoor learning expertise into your setting or environment.

More information for schools or group settings