Planning your visit

The Commons are perfect for a leisurely stroll, enjoying the fresh air, taking in the peace and tranquillity, and escaping the stress of life for those precious moments.

We have compiled this practical guidance to help you to get the most out of each and every visit you make to the Commons:

Ensuring the safety and enjoyment of yourself and others

While using the Commons, you have a duty of care to look after yourself. It is a common, not a park, so will have uneven ground, slippery paths and steps, fallen branches and other hazards that you should take great care to look out for.

Please be kind

Please maintain courtesy to other users, to ensure everyone enjoys their experience. Leave no trace of your visit and please take your litter home.

Walking

There are a great many paths on the Commons, both surfaced and unsurfaced, level and easy or steep and difficult, to suit users of all abilities and requirements. The Friends of the Commons have produced high quality, weather-resistant leaflets with maps of the Commons showing all the main paths and suggested walks. Please contact us if you would like a copy of the maps, or they can be downloaded here:

Car Parking

While we actively encourage you to stay local and walk to the Commons, there is a parking area on Fir Tree Road for the benefit of the users of the Tunbridge Wells Common. While it is free to use, parking is restricted to four hours. Please note that this is not a public car park and we take no responsibility for users’ cars. Also note that it is adjacent to a cricket ground so subject to the possibility of stray cricket balls.

On the south side of Tunbridge Wells Common, there is also a charging car park, often referred to as the Fairground carpark, at the bottom of Major York’s Road. Additionally, some of the roads through and around the Commons have unrestricted or four-hour parking, and spaces can usually be found.

Parking in Rusthall is more informal, on local roads, but please be mindful of residents.

Picnics and BBQs

The Commons are ideal for picnics and there are plenty of benches if you do not want to sit on the ground. Please take your rubbish home or place it in one of the many bins.

BBQs are not allowed as they can burn the grass if placed directly on the ground, and unattended barbecues are a fire risk.

Toilets

Toilets are available on Tunbridge Wells Common, near to Wellington Rocks. Please note that these toilets are provided and serviced by Tunbridge Wells Borough Council.

Dogs

Your dog will also love to explore the sights, sounds and smells of the Commons. We ask you to be a responsible owner and keep your dog in sight and away from other visitors; not everyone loves your dog as much as you do. Please pick up after your dog, using the bags and bins provided, and please avoid using the outfield of the cricket pitches for your walks, as the surfaces are suffering from over-use.

Horse riding

Horse riding is permitted on the Commons from 1st April to 31st October each year, although riders are requested to avoid riding on soft ground in wet weather to avoid causing damage. Horse boxes are not allowed in the car parks.

Rock climbing & scrambling

Bull’s Hollow, Happy Valley and Toad Rock provide great opportunities for climbing and scrambling. Users do so at their own risk and further information about the climbing opportunities can be found here.

Events and group activities

If you are interested in using the Commons for a special event, a photo shoot or anything else outside of the normal, please contact the Clerk to discuss further.

Fitness classes

The Commons are an excellent spot to host exercise classes, but you’ll need a licence. Please contact Paul Burnett on 01603 216541 or by email at paul.burnett@targetfollow.com to discuss further.

Weather

And now for what you can’t do

Governed by our byelaws and a bit of common sense there are a number of restrictions in place on the Commons. We would like to highlight the following:

No cycling
No vehicles
No drones
No metal detectors
  • No cycling – The exception to this is the restricted byway running from Cabbage Stalk Lane to Major York’s Road, on which cycling is permitted. This byway has recently become part of the National Cycle Network.
  • No vehicles – Vehicles of any description, including motorbikes.
  • No drones – Drones are not permitted on any part of the Commons.
  • No metal detectors – Although metal detectors are not prohibited, digging on the Commons is, so there is very little point.