Home Kent News I visited Knole Park for the first time and was absolutely mesmerised

I visited Knole Park for the first time and was absolutely mesmerised

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Original article from Kent Live

Our commuter town of Sevenoaks is renowned for its expensive houses and close ties to London.

It’s home to some of the priciest properties in the county and even has a street that’s so exclusive you can’t view it on Google Maps.

But DFLs and Ferrari garages aren't all the town has to offer.

Read more: Otford Palace: Henry VIII's lost Kent palace and all that remains of the unremarkable ruins

Sevenoaks is also home to the stunning Knole Park, which sits in the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Beauty.

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The majestic park was the backdrop to The Beatle’s ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’ music video and boasts National Trust owned Knole House, a former Archbishop’s Palace.

The extensive park also has Royal links and was once much loved by Henry VIII.

You can get up close and personal with the deer at Knole Park

It is now designated as a site of special scientific interest due to its range of acidic woodland, parkland, woods and ponds, and the best ancient woodland invertebrates in the county, including a nationally rare beetle, and a rich fungus flora.

The 947 acre park is also one of the only places in the county where you can come face to face with a herd of deer.

A herd of around 350 fallow and sika deer, owned and managed by the Knole Estate, roam the park, which is open to the public.

'Mesmerised'

Knole Park is the only place in the county where you can come face to face with deer

It was pretty quiet when I got to Knole Park at around noon, with just a few people milling around, as most of the schools have now gone back.

I hoped this would increase our chances of spotting some deer, as they're generally quite shy of humans.

The lack of people seemed to work in our favour as I spotted a herd of deer standing just a few hundred feet away as soon as I entered the park.

I was absolutely mesmerised seeing them so nearby, as the closest I'd ever managed to get to a deer before was a glimpse from afar out of a car window.

Knole House is a stunning Victorian building owned by the National Trust

I strolled around for the best part of half an hour keeping my eyes constantly peeled for the sight of any more deer, and there was plenty of stunning scenery to keep me occupied inbetween deer spotting.

The striking National Trust house and its surrounding grounds have retained their Victorian character, with a walled garden and gothic Orangery.

Deer parks were characteristic features of medieval English estates, as they allowed owners to show off their prowess as huntsmen, and were valued for the deer and timber they produced.

Whilst Knole Park is still valued for its deer, the focus lies more with the beauty of the creatures and the land they occupy, rather than their monetary worth.

The surrounding grounds are stunning

As I headed towards the car park I realised the Tripadvisor reviews were spot on – there were two separate groups of around thirty deer lazing on the grass.

I decided to brave getting closer to them this time and was astounded at how unfazed they are by humans.

I presume this is because they're so used to the huge numbers of visitors that flock to Knole Park every year, but it's quite amazing to see nonetheless.

I felt honoured to more than one herd of deer on my first trip to Knole Park, but even if I hadn't it wouldn't have been a wasted trip as the beautiful grounds alone are worth making a trip to visit.

Original Article