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Originally conceived in 1825 as part of the Calverley Estate (an ambitious project overseen by the architect Decimus Burton to create a new town to rival the older village centred around the nearby Pantiles), the meadows that make up Calverley Grounds were purchased by Tunbridge Wells Borough Council in 1920, and in the following years were landscaped into their present form. Nowadays, alongside its ornamental gardens, undulating lawns and shady trees, the park provides the town with a variety of sports facilities – tennis, netball and basketball are catered for, while in keeping with the park’s Victorian origins, there’s even a croquet lawn. The popular café is a great place to get an ice cream or a cup of tea year-round, while in August the annual Tunbridge Wells Mela is held here, featuring music, dancing and food from around the world. In winter, the park as bedecked with Christmas lights as the Ice Rink is set up. Although the park appears very formally laid out, its combination of natural and man-made habitats can support a wide variety of wild plants, insects and butterflies. Species such as the Common Blue and Small Copper – usually only found in meadowland – can often be found here.
Easy access information
This park and open space has well surfaced routes suitable for visitors with pushchairs and/or wheelchairs, and has no width restricting features, such as stiles or non RADAR kissing gates.