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Leybourne Lakes Country Park, Larkfield

4.3
#87 of 179 in Parks in Kent
Nature / Park
Leybourne Lakes Country Park is near Snodland, in Kent, England. The park, which opened in 2004, was created from disused gravel pits that have been flooded and landscaped to make fishing and wildlife lakes.HistoryIn the 1930s a river fed from Leybourne, led past the small hamlet of Lunsford (part of Larkfield) and then past Ham Hill (part of Snodland) to feed into the River Medway.Snodland was once a centre of industry along the river, with papermaking and chalk quarries being the main employers in the town. One of the former chalk pits located near to the River Medway, became Brookland Lake. A public footpath leads from Snodland, past Brookland Lake into Leybourne Lakes.The village of Larkfield (to the south of the lakes) has expanded rapidly since the M20 motorway was constructed in the 1970s and it continues to grow, with new housing developments being built. Mineral extraction also ceased in the 1970s. The gravel pits and surrounding area were designated as a Site of Nature Conservation Interest (SNCI). The site was identified in the 'Tonbridge and Malling Local Plan' for development into a country park, with the partnership of Berkeley Homes.The housing development of 'The Lakes in Leybourne' by Berkeley Homes (seen in the photos), was created beside one of the disused gravel pits that had been turned into man-made lakes. The decision to build on this area was unpopular with some Larkfield residents, but the remaining lakes were turned into a country park and nature reserve to offset the impact of this new housing. The lakes and reserve were later handed over to Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council in 2004. They are the current owners and maintain the lakes and paths.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
64 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • Having lived in Medway for many years, I cannot fathom why we never thought of coming before? We got a dog and now actively look for places where we might take her on a nice day. We found it an easy d...  more »
  • Our grandchildren really like this country park. It's only 10 minutes from where we live and it's a great place for the feeding the ducks, geese, swans and ravenous seagulls. They operate a diving bus...  more »
  • We took a photo field trip around the main lake in very early Spring and were not disappointed. I took proper duck and goose food and was hunted down by both greylags and canada geese when they saw I ...  more »
Google
  • Great place for a walk or cycle around the lakes. Plenty of things to do on the water too. Was there on a bank holiday weekend and it wasn't too crowded. Quite tranquil as well, except near the main road.
  • So quiet, fresh, cute and lovely animals this time of year. Good for photography. Waters ports Some owners not aware of the wildlife - I do not have any pictures. But I am truthful and I did speak to the owner. He said it was the other people who caused the panic, as his beautiful black Labrador could get out of the lake anywhere? It looked like he probably could, but I would not want to lose a beautiful animal, person or child in this area around the beautiful lake. Health and Safety is good.
  • Excellent place to bring the kids and to go for a walk around the lakes. Good for all ages, plenty to do. All in all, a good day out!
  • Great place for walking and picknicks. You can even swim here. Lots of wild life. Children playground and boats.
  • Had a great swim in the lake, people were very helpful

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