Calverley Grounds

Calverley Grounds

by David Hodgkinson

Calverley Grounds

Calverley Grounds is a refined landscaped park of formal beds and lawns found right in the centre of Royal Tunbridge Wells.

Dating from the 1830s, the grounds were originally part of the Decimus Burton development of Calverley New Town for private residents.

You can imagine Victorian ladies and gentleman strolling through these pleasant gardens watching little ones roll balls and hoops down the slopes.

The grounds were only created into a public domain in the 1920s and are formed of the south-western slopes of the estate. The entire area is Grade 2 and 2* listed as a conservation area.

The Hotel du Vin, previously the Calverley Hotel, has terraced gardens all of which are within the historic Calverley Estate envelope.

The communal parkland used to be the leisure grounds of the Hotel as well as for the private homeowners.

At the north-west entrance to the Estate there is a grand, high, sandstone carriage archway with a lodge in each column either side of the carriageway.  Here is a plaque celebrating Burton’s significant contribution to the area.

The main entrance is defined by the black, wrought-iron gates which decorate the wide pathway.  It can be seen from the shopping street of Mount Pleasant Road only 60 metres away, enticing visitors in for a moment of solace and refreshment.

Time out from the bustle

Today, the park is a treat and treasured by those who live and work around it.

Workers stroll at lunchtime, sit and eat lunch.

Families come to dawdle up and down the gentle slopes and picnic on the lawns. The new children's adventure playground was installed during the summer of 2017 and is suitable for all abilities.

Take a seat on the topmost part by the courts and you get a view over the Tunbridge Wells skyline and outlying countryside.

Visitors avail themselves of the café with snacks and drinks and admire the architecture of the beautiful surrounding villas and Italianate garden.

The former bandstand and tea room were destroyed by bombs in 1940.

There are 3 croquet lawns, and free tennis, netball and basketball courts.

Tunbridge Wells in Bloom

The blooms are a sight to behold in the Spring and Summer.

In 2016, Calverley Grounds won a silver award in the South and South Eastern 'In Bloom' competition. 2014 was when it won a gold 'In Bloom' award and 2015 saw the Grounds win a Green Flag meaning it is a clean, well-managed and accessbile park.

In Summer, a number of music events and festivals can be enjoyed here and in the Winter a wonderland of Christmas lights, stalls and the ice rink are a big draw.

Discover what else has occurred through past times in the town and enjoy exploring the heritage and culture of the area.

References:

Historic England 

Number of items:

Number of items: 457

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