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Public Spaces

Parishes were empowered by the Public Health Act of 1875 to acquire and maintain land for public recreation and open spaces. This presumably encouraged Jonathan Rigg Esq to philanthropically gift a field that is now the Wrotham Recreation Ground to the Parish in 1882. It was covenanted such that it was for the enjoyment of local people and permanent buildings or the grazing of animals is forbidden.

In the late 1920s the Ministry of Roads was planning the route of a new road from London to Dover that is now the A20. They wanted to route the road through the top of the Recreation Ground and sought to compensate the Parish by purchasing and gifting additional land adjacent and easterly.

The Parish had sheep on this new land for a couple of years until the new road reached Wrotham around 1931. The navvies were taken off road building duties and set to flattening the new field until it was deemed suitable for the playing of cricket. Unfortunately they could not be persuaded to flatten the recreation ground as well, hence the football pitch having a distinct slope.

Wrotham Parish now benefits from an abundance of open spaces for the enjoyment of local people that includes the following:

  • Cricket Ground
  • Recreation Ground
  • Burial Ground
  • Children’s Play Area
  • Skate Park
  • Multi-Court

The Skate Park

Located in Whitegate Field, Wrotham

The project started life as an initiative from the then volunteer youth worker, Mike Taylor, who is now the Chairman of Borough Green Parish Council.

Local youth were clambering for a Skatepark and Mike had the ability to build one, section by section, and the persuasive ability to get TMBC to agree to donate land for the site.

Mike had completed most of the jumps and a Tri Parish Agreement was formed in 2004, including Platt, Borough Green and Wrotham to share all costs, also assisted by grant funding from TMBC.

The Skatepark was formally opened in 2005 and has been the most popular and used youth facility in the locality for over a decade.

Mike continued to maintain the Park for many years until retirement, when Wrotham PC took over using it’s own contractors who are skilled in metal fabrication.

Skateparks take a lot of punishment and it’s necessary to continually have independent safety inspections and a regular maintenance regime combined with daily safety checks.

The Skatepark is now 15 years old and significant refurbishment of the base metal structure of each jump has been necessary. We are over half way through a program of re-welding the structure and replacing the ply surface with sheet metal. Originally this was steel plate that was sprayed with zinc paint but now we have identified a source of 3mm galvanised plate, which is ideally suited.

Due to the on going popularity of the facility all scheduled works stop during school holidays as flying youths have proven to be a safety hazard!

skate park one
skate park three
skate park two

Wrotham Cricket Ground

A traditional cricket ground that is enclosed by mature trees and indigenous hedgerows. It has Wrotham Pavilion situated in the north of the ground with south facing views, which is ideally positioned for spectators and hirers to catch the summer sun. To the south is the original entrance to the grounds, flanked by tall, stonewalls and ornate brick pillars with original ball finials. In the distant southerly direction are inspiring views of St Georges Church elevations and steeple; a Grade I Listed 12th Century Church.

The oldest reference to any cricket being played in Wrotham was recorded as early as 1750 against Ightham village and Bourne in 1766. The team was originally known as the Wrotham Cricket Society and around 1794 changed its name to Wrotham (St George’s) Cricket Club.

Wrotham Pavilion benefits from two function rooms with a kitchen and home, away and officials changing room facilities with showers. The Cricket club host home games during the summer months and the Football Team do likewise during the winter. The Pavilion can also be hired by members of the public when not in use by the sports clubs. (Please refer to “venue hire” for information relating to the facilities on offer and hiring the pavilion.) See our venue hire page.

The green spaces are open continuously and there are various gated accesses and parking is along the streets that surround the Recreation Ground. Because of the nature of the Cricket pitch, it is strictly forbidden to allow dogs within the ground at all times.

Pavilion enhanced

Children’s Play Area

Located within the Recreation Ground

A children’s playground that has a tradition of renewal by the village’s parents across the generations.

In the 1980’s parents of the time were dissatisfied with the limited existing facility and installed swings, a slide and ‘Springy Duck’ with funding raised locally.

In 2013 an organisation of Wrotham mums called ‘Wrotham Park Life’ came to a Parish Council Meeting and said that they wanted to replace the existing equipment with all new modern kit like ‘St George’s Castle’ and ‘Springy Horse’. They said, ‘we will raise the necessary funding and all you need to do is give us permission’.

The decision did not take long and off they went and raised over a hundred thousand pounds and the rest is history. Since 2015 Wrotham has enjoyed state of the art playground facilities and parents come from all the surrounding villages to bring their children to enjoy them.

Childrens Play Area 1

The Multicourt

Located within the Recreation Ground

A ball court area with a similar history of renewal to the Children’s Play Area.

Originally built as tennis courts in the late 1970’s to early 1980’s with money arising from compensation for the impact of motorway building through Wrotham.

The facility was renewed towards the turn of the Century by the building of the Multi-court. A tarmac area enclosed by a high tubular steel oblong frame with ball nets at either end and line markings for various ball games. This was largely funded by proceeds from the Charity that runs the Wrotham Steam Rally and has proven to be a popular facility for several ball sports over the years.

After nearly 20 years the structure was showing signs of age with movement in the walls caused by corrosion and weld failure within the tubular cage. The steel frame was substantially refurbished in 2017 by Parish Council contractors who welded replacement steel sections and sank concrete spurs into the chalk to which the frame was bolted.

In 2018 a new tarmac sports surface was laid with funding from WPC, the Walking Footballers and local KCC Member Harry Rayner as part of his Members Grant.

The local Netball Team have purchased new nets for their games, the walking footballers use it every week and local kids enjoy kicking their football around at weekends and holidays.

Football Pitch on Rec

Recreation Ground

This is part of the field that John Rigg Esq donated to the people of Wrotham in 1882.

Most of the space is the currently unused football pitch with the recently refurbished Multi-court in the distance. There is a Zip-Wire for teenagers and the Children’s Play Area is to the right.

Wrotham is blessed with some wonderful facilities that have been ably maintained by the Parish Council.

Football Pitch on Rec
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