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View across the valley with the picturesque Scotney Castle in Kent in the foreground and the Victorian country house beyond
View across the valley with Scotney Castle in the foreground and the Victorian country house beyond | © National Trust Images/David Sellman

Scotney parkland trail

Explore the historic parkland, take in views of Scotney Castle and discover key features of the Scotney estate. This trail is great for finding out about the history and secrets of this wooded estate in Tunbridge Wells in Kent.

Total steps: 12

Total steps: 12

Start point

Scotney Castle car park, grid ref: TQ688353

Step 1

At the bottom of the car park follow the road to the right, passing the view of the New House on your left. At the corner head towards the large white Salvin gate. Please be careful as there may be traffic on this section.

Step 2

Go through the Salvin Gate and onto the old carriageway. Follow the old carriageway to the bridge at the bottom of the field.

Step 3

The stream that runs under this bridge is called the Sweetbourne. This small stream feeds the moat surrounding the old castle. From the bridge continue on the old carriageway, go through the gate and head towards the next bridge. Look to the left before the next bridge for a glimpse of the old castle.

Step 4

The river that flows under this bridge is the River Bewl. The Bewl Water reservoir is a short distance from Scotney. This bridge is interesting as from a carriage you would imagine the entire bridge was built of expensive sandstone with the owners showing off their wealth. However look over the bridge to see the lower half built of cheaper bricks. From the bridge go through the gate and walk up the hill until you reach the fingerpost.

Step 5

From the fingerpost turn left and follow the blue-topped posts across the field. On reaching the blue post marked with an eight look to the right to see the gnarly old hornbeam pollard. Continue over the crest of the field towards the gap in the fence line.

Step 6

Go through the gap and continue straight on along the edge of the woodland pasture. Stop halfway along this field and take in the view of the New House and old castle. There is a well-positioned log here to rest your feet a while. Carry on until you come to the gateway.

Sheep grazing in a field near Scotney Castle in Kent and in the distance is the New House
Sheep grazing near Scotney Castle and in the distance is the New House | © National Trust Images/David Sellman

Step 7

From the gateway continue to the next blue post. As you near the post the tops of the oasts should come into view. Continue across the field until you reach the bridge.

Step 8

After crossing the bridge go through the field to the next gate. Go through the gate and follow the hedge line up the field towards the gate on the road. Before going through the gate, sit on the bench and admire the view of the historic parkland. At the road turn left for approx 110yd (100m), then turn right over the stile into the field.

Step 9

Follow the hedge line around the field, continuing to the stile at the top of the field.

Step 10

Walk along the top of the field following the blue posts. At the post marked 24, stop and look at the bomb craters to your right. Carry on walking past the bomb craters and turn left at the fingerpost. Walk down the hill towards the stile in the right-hand corner of the field.

Step 11

Over the stile turn left and follow the old servant’s entrance. Turn right onto the road, then after approx 55yd (50m) turn right through the old barn.

Step 12

After going through the old barn you have arrived back at the car park.

End point

Scotney Castle car park, grid ref: TQ688353

Trail map

Scotney parkland trail map
Scotney parkland trail map | © Crown copyright and database rights 2013 Ordnance Survey

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Lamberhurst, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN3 8JN

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We’ve partnered with Cotswold Outdoor to help everyone make the most of their time outdoors in the places we care for.

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