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Riverside Country Park, Gillingham

(300+ reviews on the web)
Nature / Park
Riverside Country Park is a large coastal public park, situated alongside the River Medway estuary between Gillingham and Rainham. The park covers about 100 hectares - approximately 247acre. There are a variety of natural habitats within the park, including mudflats and salt marsh, ponds and reed-beds, grassland and scrub, which provide a haven for wildlife.HistoryThe coastline of Gillingham has had a rich and varied past The park was established in the 1970s by Medway Council and takes in the various areas; of Motney Hill, Rainham Dock, Bloors Wharf, Horrid Hill, Sharp's Green Bay and Eastcourt Meadows.Rainham Docks and Motney HillThe earliest known occupation of the area was in the Neolithic times according to archaeological evidence found around the Rainham Docks area. This was later used by the Romans as a burial site.Like most of Medway, the fertile area was then a major site of hops, cherries, plums and apple orchards and wheat fields.In 1819, Motney Hill appears on maps as an island. Because of its large sand deposits it was also known as 'Gritty Island'. In 1901, the British Standard Cement Company started chalk extraction to London. The chalk came from a large pit, now known as Berengrave Local Nature ReserveA cement works was then established on Motney Hill island in 1912. During high tides, barges sailed into the river near the docks, then workers known as 'Muddies' collected mud from the riverbed and loaded it onto the barges. As the tide came back in, the barges would re-float and sail to Rainham Dock, where the mud would be mixed with chalk and fired at high temperatures to produce cement.
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  • Good place for a gentle riverside walk, with clear paths and signage. Nice views across the river and countryside and an opportunity to spot birds. No kids with us but the play area looked great for t...  more »
  • FREE and fabulous park for the kids! Limited food in cafĂ© - mostly burgers and chips but kids were happy with that. Lovely walks with leaflets to guide you.  more »
  • Spent a nice couple of hours walking from Riverside Country Park to Gillingham Strand. On the promise of an ice cream half way through, my kids (both 20+) agreed to join my wife & me. The walk is very...  more »
  • Love coming here for a walk just a shame some people can't treat it better and not litter the place
  • Lovely place to walk whatever the weather, overspill carpark for busy times - children's park is well kept
  • Stunning place when weather is nice. Love the view around. Excellent place to watch Sunset, just stay on west side.
  • Beautiful surroundings, free parking, nice cafe although always seems to be shut around the times I visit so check opening hours beforehand. A must-go for avid Pokemon trainers, but equally suited to dog walkers and families.
  • Long walk by the river, pleasant surroundings, has a center with a cafe and toilets, good for dog walking, cycling, jogging, walking, part of the route 1 cycle route, toilets are only open 10am to 5pm