Take a summer stroll around Toys Hill

Summer view from Toys Hill, a National Trust property in Kent

The views over the Weald of Kent look spectacular in the summer sunshine from Toys Hill. Download our map of walks, find a waymarked trail or follow one of our walks below to explore this beautiful piece of countryside. Keep an eye out along the way for Octavia Hill's well, our bat tower and the old forgotten site of Weardale Manor.

As summer rolls around the bird song comes into full swing at Toys Hill, creating a wonderful soundtrack to a stroll around the Kent countryside and woodland.

The common buzzard population is on the rise throughout the South East and this is very much true at Toys Hill; expect to see buzzards circling the thermals high above you in clearings. It’s not uncommon to see the smaller kestrel flying around these parts either.

Back on the ground there’s all sorts of plant life to look out for, making Toys Hill a great place to bring a spotters book. Common orchids and wild flowers are ones to keep an eagle eye out for.

Short walks

Long walks

Keep an eye out for...

The Octavia Hill well at Toys Hill, a National Trust place in Kent

Well, well, well

Octavia Hill (one of the founding members of the National Trust) sank a well for the residents of Toys Hill to use and gifted it to the National Trust in 1898. The well was restored in 1999 and has some of the best views across the Weald of Kent to the Ashdown Forest in the far distance.

The bat tower at Toys Hill, a National Trust countryside site in Kent

A batty place for a tower

The bat tower was once used as the water tower for the Weardale estate. After suffering damage in the 1987 storm, we decided to convert the tower into a bat hibernaculum. The tower is well used by bats and they seem to like hanging out in their new home.

A pond that supplied water to the Emmetts estate near Toys Hill and Emmetts Garden, National Trust places in Kent

Pump it up at Pugden

Next to a beautifully calm pond you'll see the remains of the Victorian ram pump system which was used to supply water for the Emmetts estate. The basic idea behind a ram pump is simple: it uses the momentum of a relatively large amount of moving water to pump a relatively small amount of water uphill.