Warden’s Blog – October 2021

18th October 2021

Cutting and clearing

Work continues on the clearance of our paths and tracks. We have now pretty much finished Rusthall Common and are getting on well with Tunbridge Wells. There are still quite a lot of minor areas of scrub to be cleared with the small flail but we are getting there.

Clearance of paths and tracks.

The right equipment for the job.

The big tractor and collector flail have also been back to cut and clear our main meadow areas and the hedging flail will soon be in to cut back steep banks and road verges. This year we also have access to a smaller tractor and collector unit for areas such as the wildflower site between Inner London Road and the A26 and the little herb rich triangles at the junction of Major Yorks with Fir Tree and Hungershall Park. This is one of our major tasks of the year and it is always a relief to get it finished before conditions get too wet for heavy machinery to be used.

Tractor and collector flail.

Urgent tree work.

As we get towards the end of cutting grass, our attention is starting to turn to trees and we will be making a start on the most urgent work in the next week or so. A large number of medium sized Ash trees adjacent to Rusthall Rd that are badly affected by die-back will be removed or substantially pollarded and several larger trees on the edges of Coach Rd will be similarly reduced to make them safe. It is interesting to see at least one Ash tree on Coach Rd is still flourishing amongst the badly affected ones, so we have to hope that some trees will show resistance to the disease and maybe we will be able to propagate from them for the future.

Ash trees, the Commons have many badly affected by dieback.

Please don’t misuse our car park.

As the Covid situation returns more towards normality and people return to work, we are noticing that cars are once again starting to be parked all day in Fir Tree Rd car park, in spite of the clear signage stating that this is not allowed. We are therefore resuming our practise of recording vehicles parking there and putting warning stickers on offending vehicles prior to possible prosecution. This car park is for Commons users only, not commuters or shop workers who don’t want to pay for parking; be warned!

Fir Tree car park, with 4 hours of free parking for users of the Commons only.



Steve Budden