About Tonbridge Racecourse Sportsground

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Tonbridge Racecourse sportsground covers an area approximately 28 hectares (69 acres) and is located in the heart of Tonbridge.

This was named Tonbridge Racecourse sportsground due to its original use for horse racing. This former 'meadowland' was grazed by sheep under a lease from the Tonbridge Water Works Company Ltd and others, to a private landowner until 1923. The area was however always popular for playing sports and in 1920 the Tonbridge Sports Association was specifically formed to manage sports activities at the Sportsground, for the benefit of the sports clubs in Tonbridge. In 1923 the 'Racecourse Meadows' were purchased by the then Tonbridge Urban District Council along with Tinkers Island which was acquired from another private landowner. In 1923 the Tonbridge Sports Association was also granted a representative on the Parks Committee of the District Council (the predecessor to the Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council) and the site was officially opened in June of that year. The land at Brightfriars Meadow and Deacons Field were acquired more recently and all this land now makes up the Sportsground.

We work in partnership with Tonbridge Sports Association to enhance the sportsground for the benefit of sports clubs and the wider public but always having sports use as a primary purpose of the site.

The Council is now consulting on the new management plan for the site.

Park summary

This sportsground has:

  • a baseball pitch
  • a bowling green
  • 23 football pitches
  • 12 rugby pitches
  • a large equipped children play area suitable for toddlers to teens
  • a 9 hole mini crazy golf course
  • 4 hard surfaced tennis courts - book tennis courts
  • a skate park for skaters and BMXers
  • an outdoor gym
  • a ball court
  • Two outdoor table tennis tables. Read about table tennis coaching summer 2016
  • a permanently sited miniature railway track operated by Tonbridge Model Engineering Society which is used during the summer months
  • a kiosk where ice creams, confectionery and drinks are for sale, and where mini golf equipment, and the bowling green and the tennis courts can be hired. This kiosk operates during the summer. However a cafe is also located at Tonbridge Swimming Pool.
  • toilets - separate male, female and disabled by the entrance to the sportsground from New Wharf Road. The Bowls Club and Sports Pavilion also have dedicated toilet facilities
  • a large number of seats and picnic benches. It may be possible to sponsor a seat.
  • a network of paths, Public Right of Way footpath MU24 runs along its northern boundary, there are other paths in the sportsground as well.
  • water in and around it, water safety should be considered when visiting this sportsground
  • dog waste bins. Dogs are allowed in accordance with the Dog Control Orders.
  • the Tudor Cycle Route 12 (formerly the Tonbridge to Penshurst cycle route) running through it, which links the sportsground to Haysden Country Park and Penshurst Place.
  • a slipway for the public to launch small boats into the river from near the Lower Castle Field car park. An Environment Agency boating licence is required.
  • fishing available along the River Medway is operated by Tonbridge & District Angling and Fish Preservation Society

Not allowed

  • Cycling unless on the marked cycle route
  • Swimming
  • Fires including barbeques
  • Unauthorised boating
  • Model boating
  • Helicopter landing
  • Ballooning
  • Model aircraft
  • Camping
  • Motorbikes

Available nearby

Some of the clubs that use this sportsground are: