This reserve is made up of a series of lakes, ponds, river, wet woodland and grasslands - creating a great place for a riverside stroll, and host to a variety of wildlife.
This former gravel and sand extraction pit has been transformed into a series of three lakes – the Main lake, Eco lake and Northern lake. These lakes are encompassed by wet woodland, ponds and grasslands. Kent Wildlife Trust are managing over half of the site on behalf of Ashford Borough Council (ABC); with Ashford Leisure Trust (ALT) and Mid Kent Fisheries also working in partnership. The reserve has great views and footpaths to the Wye Downs, and good access links from Ashford – a gateway to the Stour Valley.
The reserve is rich in birdlife on and around the lakes. Take a frosty morning walk in the winter months to see the migratory wildfowl and wetland birds, including species such as shoveller, wigeon, tufted duck and Gadwall. In the spring, catch the migrating warbler species and breeding birds around the lake edges, and hear the skylarks singing in the skies over the summer. Look out for the kingfishers zipping across the surface of the lakes and along the river profile.
Other wildlife the site has to offer include a large array of butterfly and dragonfly species in the summer months, keep your eyes peeled for weasels darting across the paths, and grass snakes bathing in the sunshine.
Whether it be a brisk walk, a gentle stroll, a wildlife watch area, or to pitch up on one of the picnic tables for an alfresco lunch – Conningbrook has something to offer all.