£20,000 needed to repair storm damage at Tonbridge Castle

BLOCKED PATH: The popular Motte attraction needs to be restored PHOTO: Kerry Barton/Studio 23 Photography

£20,000 needed to repair storm damage at Tonbridge Castle

by Andy Tong | 11th April 2019

A GRANT of more than £20,000 will go towards restoring the Motte at Tonbridge Castle after it suffered substantial damage from a tree that fell down in the high winds last month.

The 100-year-old oak came down during Storm Freya and was found to be suffering from a fungal infection called ganoderma.

Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council employed a specialist contractor to remove the fallen tree and another adjacent tree that was found to pose a health and safety risk.

But further work must be carried out to allow access to the mound, which is a favourite attraction of locals and tourists alike.

Council Leader Nicolas Heslop said: “The damage is both unsightly and also prevents the public accessing the Motte.

“The Motte pathway is extremely popular and also forms part of the Castle audio tour.”

He added: “The council is seeking quotations to reinstate the path and the fence, and we are in liaison with English Heritage to enable the works to be progressed without delay.”

An initial budget estimate of £20,000 has been identified with more accurate costings being put forward for approval this week.

Funding is available to help cover the costs through a grant of £20,231 from the Government’s Local Authorities Parks Improvement Fund.

The award was made for remedial and renovation works and addressing health and safety concerns in parks.

Any outstanding amounts will be covered by TMBC’s General Revenue Reserve.

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