Kent Ramblers

Walk 79

Walk 79: Kearsney and St Radigund's

Distance: 6.1 Miles (3 Hours)

OS Map: Explorer 138 (Start at grid reference TR 288437)

Start at Kearsney Abbey Car Park, Alkham Valley Road.

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1. Walk out of car park entrance and cross the road. Go R along the footpath, then take the narrow road to the L (Scotland Common) and continue up steep hill; the road leads onto a track. Follow track until you see red & blue arrows on R and yellow arrow on L, take L path and continue through wood to a stile, follow path across the field keeping bushes to L until you reach a paddock with a gate and stile to the L.

2. After crossing stile go to L of large tree and continue straight ahead. Go down the hill and turn R (army land ahead). When you reach the road cross WITH CARE and continue through the farm and up hill through three gates. Path now turns the R, (do not go through the gate on L) follow line of field fence until you reach a wooded area. (Photo taken at this point looking backwards)

3. Follow track ahead through the wood until you reach the road. Turn R and look for a stile on the L (app 100yds) at passing place on the road. After crossing stile continue across the field; numerous buildings come into view ahead, and where a path crosses in front of you take the path to the L, turn L and continue along the concrete road, passing the ruins of St Radigund's Abbey, B, until you cross cattle grid.

4. Turn R on Abbey Road towards Dover, WITH CARE continue for app 1300 yds; when the road starts to go down hill take the road to the L. At FP sign on R at app 100 yds, take path through the bushes (if you go to R off the path a few yards you can get a good view of the Castle, Town and Harbour). Then continue until you reach waymarker, where you take path to the L to zigzag following markers through bushes down the hill and onto a small playing field; the path continues along the back of the houses and down steps onto Lewisham Road.

5. Cross road and walk to the R, (athletic ground on opposite side of road). Continue to next junction. (Look up towards the railway bridge opposite. Where the 1st bungalow now stands, in 1917, a tram overturned causing the deaths of 11 passengers.) Turn L into Lower Road. (Buildings on right are the old Crabble Paper Mill, , and further along the road you will see the Corn Mill - D.)

6. After the Mill the road goes R over a narrow road bridge and further on you lose sight of the river behind the houses. Pass the Royal Oak Public House, and later the village shop; continue on till you see the Dublin Man of War Public House. Cross the road into Minnis Lane and turn through a small gate on your R; this path leads into the Abbey grounds and back to the Car Park.

This walk was originally published on a calendar produced by White Cliffs Group.  Thanks to John Polden for originally devising this route, Rob Riddle for the photograph, Diana Blackwell for checking the directions and Andrew Boultbee for the idea.

Places of Interest

A. Kearsney Abbey

With its children's play area and lake. Kearsney Abbey is popular for family outings and picnics. Never inhabited by monks, it was privately owned for many years, but it is steeped in history. In 1959 dry rot was discovered in the house and it was demolished, except for the billiards room which is now a café.

B. St Radigund's Abbey

Built in 1193, it was visited by Edward II in 1319 but according to an old manuscript it had come into a very ruinous condition by the year 1500 owing to "the abbot having wasted the income of his house on licentious pleasures".

C. Crabble Paper Mill

Originally built in the 1700’s, it was rebuilt in 1906 and is where one of the earliest paper machines in England was housed.

D. Crabble Corn Mill

Built in 1812 to supply flour to feed the troops camped out along the Kent coast awaiting a possible invasion by Napoleon. You may tour the mill and see all of its machinery working. Other facilities include an art gallery and tea room.

Public transport

Kearsney rail station, buses 91 from Folkestone 2-hourly, 15 Canterbury-Dover hourly


Cafes and pubs at Kearsney and Crabble.

Our book of Ten Favourite Walks in the Kent Countryside has routes for ten more walks like this one.

Ramblers' volunteers in Kent work tirelessly to ensure that our paths are as well protected and maintained as possible.  Of course we also organise led walks but most of our members are independent walkers who simply want to support our footpath work.  Please join us and become a supporter too.  You need us and we really need you.

If you find that the directions and map for this walk are incorrect in any way, please report the problem to

Map based on Ordnance Survey mapping released into the public domain under the OpenData agreement.

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