Looking after our natural environment

Our grounds maintenance team works continuously across the district to maintain many of our important green spaces. These areas include our beautiful parks, open spaces, and highways and a crucial part of that management is ensuring the conservation of local wildlife and our impact in these spots.

Bee Kind Initiative

We continue our yearly mowing regime where specified areas in the district where cutting is reduced in order to encourage local pollinators. We routinely review these areas and manage them where necessary and have placed Bee Friendly signs to explain what we are doing to passerbys. 

Bee kind

The Bee Kind areas we are managing are listed here:

  • Radnor Park
  • Cheriton Recreation Ground
  • East Cliff triangle
  • Holman's Field
  • Canterbury Road Recreation Ground
  • Morehall Recreation Ground
  • Kingsnorth Gardens

Conservation of our highways

Working with Kent County Council we have reduced the cutting of the roadside verges in specific places to help wildlife thrive.

  • Birkdale Drive roundabout
  • Churchill Avenue
  • Tile Kiln Lane (small stetch)
  • Southern Way bank

Pesticides use

Our use of chemicals in all our council owned parks, gardens and play areas continues to be reduced. 

Figures show that for the period 2015 to 2021, pesticide and herbicide use fell from a peak of 75 litres to just 14.5 litres in 2021 - an 80% drop. The council's grounds maintenance department has kept the use of pesticides and herbicides to a minimum for several years and following a motion agreed by full council in 2019, efforts have been made to find effective alternative methods.

An image of flowers used for the discussion of pesticide use in our greener initative.

There are still a limited number of situations where chemicals will still be needed, such as to treat invasive weeds like Japanese knotweed and giant hogweed. Officers will continue to check for new technology and best practice to further reduce the use of pesticide & herbicides.

No pesticide is used on football pitches or in the council's play areas.

Across the district

We manage popular parks across the district including; Kingsnorth Gardens, Lower Leas Coastal Park, Radnor Park and Royal Military Canal.

Kingsnorth Gardens

The peaceful, ornate and beautifully maintained Kingsnorth Gardens is an oasis of lawns, flowers and Italianate and Oriental gardening styles in the heart of Folkestone. Opened in 1928, Kingsnorth Gardens features an extensive rose garden with pergolas, lawns and formal ponds as well as formal flower beds and shaded paths. We continue to work to maintain the biodiversity of this amazing green space and ensure that the park is still an extraordinary place to visit in 2022.

Lower Leas Coastal Park

An image of the lower leas coastal park.

The Lower Leas Coastal Park is a linear park between Folkestone and Sandgate which has been developed into an award-winning park for recreation and enjoyment of the coast. Wildlife such as migrating birds and insects thrive in the area and the park contains an under cliff area with a unique microclimate attracting wildlife rarely found in the UK.

The Coastal Park has won the Green Flag Award (given to quality green spaces) every year since 2007 when it first applied for the award.

Radnor Park

An image of the grounds maintenance team at Radnor Park.

You can access the whole park by  foot, bike and public transport. Folkestone Central train station is right opposite and offers a high speed service to London, while local buses stop nearby. The lower park offers a contrast to the upper park with the emphasis on quiet recreation spaces for people and wildlife to enjoy.

Royal Military Canal

An image of the royal military canl.

The Royal Military Canal (originally intended to be a Napoleonic defence) is now an award-winning haven for wildlife, recipient of the Green Flag award every year since 2010. We manage the canal in a way which supports and creates habitats along its banks to allow a diverse range of species to coexist with the many visitors to the canal.