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Project Update November 2017

This month, works are continuing in the park, the Environment Agency has issued a report on water levels in Kent, and there will be more opportunities to get involved! 

Main works update

Works are progressing in Kearsney Abbey and Russell Gardens. Our in-house grounds maintenance team is continuing to clear shrubs, smaller trees and hedges. DDC is also undertaking essential tree maintenance work in the western car park in Kearsney Abbey during the winter. We apologise for any inconvenience caused by the closure but we have to provide a safe working zone for staff and visitors.

Russell Gardens ornamental pond update

Once desilting works were completed, DDC commissioned a survey to review the condition of the ornamental pond base. The report from this survey is now with a structural and marine engineer to decide on the best way to maintain the base of the pond. This will ensure that the pond, the main feature of Thomas Mawson’s garden design, can be refilled and is once again the focal point in Russell Gardens. 

River water levels

The Environment Agency has issued an update on the status of river water levels in Kent. Read the full report.

October was a month of low rainfall with just 31% of the long term average over Kent and South London. Although summer rainfall was near normal, totals over the past 12 months were below normal, and effective rainfall over the same period was less than half the average. River flows ranged from below normal to exceptionally low. Winter rainfall (between October and February) is needed to recharge aquifers. We will need an exceptionally wet winter to restore aquifers to near normal levels but to date there has been no sign of this.

Share your photographs

This month’s lovely image was taken by Ria Lacey who attended one of our free photography workshops. If you’ve got a photograph of Russell Gardens or Kearsney Abbey that you’d like featured on a future update, please email it to Please note that we can’t guarantee we’ll use all pictures, but we’ll do our best to include ones when we can!

There are also a few spaces left on our next free photography workshop on Sunday 3rd December. 

One-day café closure

The café in Kearsney Abbey will be closed for one day only, on Friday 15th December. This is for the staff’s Christmas lunch. We apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Save the date - Kearsney Parks Forum

The next meeting of the Kearsney Parks Forum will take place on Tuesday 6th February, 6pm – 7.30pm. If you’d like to come along and help shape future plans for the Kearsney Parks project, please email Further details will follow nearer the time.

East Kent Parks Forum

The East Kent Parks Forum will meet on Thursday 1st February, 4pm-7pm at Westgate Parks in Canterbury. There will be a tour of Westgate Parks to hear how they achieved Green Flag status. A Keep Britain Tidy speaker will then talk about the requirements needed for Green Flag status, and give an update on the Great British Spring Clean. If you’re involved with a local park or green space and would like to come along, please email

. Keep-me-posted.