Coronavirus (COVID-19) updates
Due to coronavirus (COVID-19), all Friends of Horsted Valley meetings are temporarily on hold.
The footpath works from Concorde Avenue to Walderslade Road will start on site on 15 June 2020. Contractors will be following COVID-19 construction guidance. See below for more updates.
Horsted Valley open space is a mosaic of natural habitats ranging from rare chalk grasslands to ancient semi-natural woodland. Along with important landscape and ecological features it includes amenities such as football pitches, play areas and walking routes.
We are working on a project aiming to promote access through Horsted Valley by formalising walking and cycling routes, as well as interpretation trails, so that users can learn while exercising or enjoying the site.
This project also aims to encourage community involvement, grow existing and new partnerships, and increase the value of our natural capital.
Please report any sightings of illegal vehicles in Horsted Valley to the police non-emergency number, 101, or on the Kent Police website.
Let's Talk Horsted Valley events
These events are a chance for local residents, businesses, Kent Wildlife Trust, the Friends of Horsted Valley, councillors and others to come together. At these events people can share ideas for potential enhancements to the valley in terms of management, access, walking and cycling, wildlife and interpretation.
Over 100 people attended our 2019 event at 25th Medway Scout Hut and Fort Luton. Over 70 of them responded to a questionnaire about how they use Horsted Valley, the update on proposals and if they had any concerns.
The results have been collated and the majority are happy with the proposals for promoting walking and cycling as well as getting cattle back to manage the grass and scrub.
Work completed so far includes:
- successfully led bids to create a new pocket park within the Luton Millennium Green. Over £40,000 has been invested in creating an area of natural play, raised flower and vegetable beds, the planting of 30 orchard trees alongside new paths, fences and increased maintenance. Local volunteers have played an important role in maintaining the site for everyone’s enjoyment
- Vale Drive and Barnfield play areas have benefited from updates and improvements
- fencing and inhibitors have been installed to stop unauthorised motorbike access at the main entrance points and more works will follow
- an introductory meeting to the Friends of Horsted Valley took place earlier this year where over 20 people signed up to become Friends once established. After that a working group was formed that looked at memberships, committee members and next steps moving forward
- our Public Rights of Way team have produced a walking route map which and is a useful way to help explore the valley. Wayfinding signs have also been installed along the routes to keep walkers on track
- Village Green
Status has been approved to include Daisy and Coney Banks as well as Barnfield
Further work and next steps includes:
- the work to construct a new footpath will start on 15 June and will last approximately 8 weeks. The footpath will start by the scout hut at the Concorde Avenue entrance and connect up with the existing footpath that leads to Walderslade Road. The footpath surface will be crushed stone. The entrance by the scout hut will be improved with the vehicle gate being relocated to allow a motorbike restrictor to be installed. We apologise for any inconvenience caused whilst the work takes place. The contractors will be following COVID-19 construction guidance. We politely ask that visitors continue to adhere to government guidance on social distancing
- fencing is planned to restrict motorbikes around the Horsted Park development area entering Horsted Farm fields
- we are exploring our options to prevent further vandalism to waymarker posts
- we are working with Kent Wildlife Trust to explore our funding options for Cattle Grazing
- welcome signs and interpretation are being drafted by our Communications Team
Our Public Rights of Way Team have produced a walking route map which is useful for exploring the valley.
For more details on Horsted Valley open space email: email@example.com