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Open Spaces and Woodlands

 Open SpaceA considerable part of Harbledown and Rough Common Parish lies within the confines of the Blean ancient woodland complex, a nationally renowned resource (www.theblean.co.uk) designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).  The parish is bounded to the north by Church Wood with reserves owned and managed by the RSPB, English Nature and the Woodland Trust.  On the southern boundary lies Bigbury Wood, with the archeologically-important Bigbury Fort within a nature reserve owned and managed by the Kent Wildlife Trust.

Within the parish boundaries are several open spaces which have been acquired over the years by the parish council for the recreational benefit of residents and which are maintained by the parish council to that end.

These are:
• Dukes Meadow
• Jubilee Field
• Pine Meadow
• Cheyney Field
• No Man’s Orchard

In addition, at the end of Mill Lane heading out of Canterbury on the North Downs Way, lies Golden Hill, a small hill top grassland field of just over one hectare which provides superb views of Bigbury Wood, the Stour valley and orchards to the North West.  Golden Hill was bequeathed to the National Trust in 1928, to be used for the benefit of local children.  This amenity is managed by the National Trust as part of the White Cliffs of Dover portfolio from the Dover office ( contact Simon Ovenden, 01304 207326).

Management Policy

Management of all open spaces by Harbledown and Rough Common Parish Council is coordinated by a committee of councillors (see home page links).  Wherever consistent with the declared use of an area, management is aimed at maximum species diversity and maintenance regimes are aimed at this objective.  The work of contractors is carefully scheduled and monitored with the emphasis, wherever possible, being placed on traditional, i.e. non-chemical, operations.  Where specific operations dictate the use of chemical pesticides, the guidelines issues by the Weald Meadows Initiative (WMI) on ‘Control of established perennial weeds using herbicides in grassland managed for species diversity, June 2005’ are followed and only products with Defra approval for this purpose are used.


Dukes Meadow

DUKES MEADOW

Status – Multi-use flower meadow and recreational area leased from Kent County Council.

Location – TR585130.

Access – 1.  Over A2 slip road footbridge on bridleway behind St Michael’s Church.  2.  From Hillside Avenue.

Amenity Policy – Recreational and games areas maintained in southern half of field.  Wildlife and bramble area inside south eastern perimeter.  Northern half of field maintained for wildflowers and cut for hay at midsummer.
Management Regime – Recreational areas and three access paths cut twice monthly during peak growing season.  Hedges trimmed back to boundaries annually in September.


Jubilee Field

JUBILEE FIELD

Status –  Small hill meadow owned by parish in centre of Harbledown village.

Location – TR583131.

Access –  From bridleway behind St Michael’s Church on south side of A2 slip road footbridge.

Amenity Policy – Maintain as a tranquil viewing and resting area.

Management Regime – Meadow grass cut three times annually with paths to seating areas kept short.  Hedges cut back to boundaries annually in September.


Pine meadow

PINE MEADOW 

Status –  Dual purpose flower meadow and children’s play area in Upper Harbledown owned by parish.

 

 

 


Cheyney Field

CHEYNEY FIELD

Status – Dual purpose allotment and general recreational area in Upper Harbledown owned by parish.

Location – TR584113.

Access –  By pedestrian gate from London Road, Upper Harbledown or via allotment gate on byway running from motorway bridge alongside A2.

Amenity Policy – Maintain recreational area for sporting purposes and general relaxation.

Management Regime – All grassed area to be kept regularly cut throughout growing season.  Hedges cut back to boundaries annually in September.

Location – TR583116.

Access – Via lane from London Road in Upper Harbledown and by stile from bridleway alongside A2 sliproad.

Amenity Policy – Maintain eastern half of field as a flower meadow and lower western section as a formal, maintained childrens’ play area with a range of play structures.

Management Regime – Flower meadow cut three times annually with paths from main gate to stile and play area kept short along with western recreational area.  Hedges cut back to boundaries annually in September.

Status – Multi-use flower meadow and recreational area leased from Kent County Council.

Location – TR585130.

Access – 1.  Over A2 slip road footbridge on bridleway behind St Michael’s Church.  2.  From Hillside Avenue.

Amenity Policy – Recreational and games areas maintained in southern half of field.  Wildlife and bramble area inside south eastern perimeter.

Northern half of field maintained for wildflowers and cut for hay at midsummer.

Management Regime – Recreational areas and three access paths cut twice monthly during peak growing season.  Hedges trimmed back to boundaries annually in September