The history of Rose Hill woods

There is known to have been a house at Rose Hill, probably since the end of the 18th century and it stood until being abandoned and eventually destroyed in a fire in the 1970s. Since then, the house has become buried under the soil and become shrouded in a canopy of sycamore though many local people still remember the house and played in and around it as children. More about the house can be found in Roger Cockett’s notes on Rose Hill which can be accessed here.

Little is known about what the site may have been used for before the building of Rose Hill House. However, there is speculation that a high piece of ground close to a Roman road is unlikely to have no archaeological evidence that predates the house.

Do you have a memory of Rose Hill? Submit it here!

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Wildlife at Rose Hill woods

The majority of the site has become secondary woodland since the house at Rose Hill was abandoned. Sycamore dominate but also hawthorn, elder, holm oak and wych elm are common (Also present are beech, english elm, cherry, blackthorn, holly and lime.  Woodland plants include bluebell and wood anemone but also plants that are clearly from the garden at Rose Hill. These include winter aconites, several varieties of snowdrop and white sweet violets.

There are relatively few records for Rose Hill Woods. Therefore, it is crucially important to ensure that all records that are made at the site are sent to the appropriate recording group and/or the Kent and Medway Biological Records Centre.

Submit sightings from Rose Hill Download Management Plan

Yew berries


Harts Tongue Fern

Hart’s Tongue Fern

Lords and Ladies

Lords and Ladies


Turkey Oak


White Violet

Winter Aconite

Winter Aconite

Wood Avens

Wood Avens

English Oak



  1. Yew (Taxus baccata)
  2. Lords and Ladies (Arum maculatum)
  3. Bluebell (Hyacintoides non-scripta)
  4. Lesser celandine (Ranunculus ficaria)
  5. English oak (Quercus robur)
  6. Harts Tongue fern (Asplenium scolopendrium)


  1. Speckled Wood Butterfly (Perarge aegeria)
  2. Slow-worm (Anguilis fragilis)
  3. Chiffchaff (Phylloscopus collybita)
  4. Long-tailed tit (Aegithalos caudatus)
  5. Goldcrest (Regulus regulus)
  6. Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major)

Activities in Rose Hill woods

Rose Hill Wood lends itself to a short main circular path through part of the old house and gardens. Garden plant escapees in winter aconite, sweet violet, ornamental snowdrops are visible at certain times of the year. And the avenue of specimen trees follows the top of the slope nearest the cricket ground.

The old house and gardens remain hidden at a glance but can be seen with a little help interpreting the land.

As this is a semi isolated woodland site it is important for migratory birds in spring and autumn.

Sound maps

Using senses

Sound maps can help tune in to the world around us. Our ancestors would have used the sounds to navigate the landscape.

Rose Hill Perry Wood Cromer’s Wood Gorham & Admiral’s Wood The Meads Community Woodland Hucking Estate

Wildlife watching

Wildlife Watching

Woodlands are full of wildlife but by slowing down, keeping still and quiet it is possible to see or hear these woodland inhabitants.

Cromer’s Wood Gorham & Admiral’s Wood Hucking Estate Perry Wood Rose Hill The Meads Community Woodland

Butterfly counting

Wildlife Watching

Butterflies can be seen flying spring, summer and autumn. Why not join in with the Big Butterfly Count in the summer.

Gorham & Admiral’s Wood Cromer’s Wood Hucking Estate The Meads Community Woodland Perry Wood

Autumn art with leaves

Natural art

Using the colours, shapes and textures of leaves to create colourful designs on the woodland floor.

Perry Wood Gorham & Admiral’s Wood The Meads Community Woodland Hucking Estate Cromer’s Wood Rose Hill

Historical Research Group of Sittingbourne

HRGS is a voluntary group dedicated to understanding our history and heritage and helping others to do the same. Based in The Forum in Sittingbourne, current exhibitions include the 2015 Rose Hill community dig.

Richard Emmett


Mid Kent Downs Countryside Partnership

Part of a network of Countryside Management Partnerships throughout Kent; it is supported by Kent County Council, Swale Borough Council and Maidstone Borough Council and is accommodated by the AONB Unit.

Sally Evans

Mid Kent Downs Countryside Partnership Manager

Map of Rose Hill woods

Directions & how to get there

Parking is available next to the Gore Court Cricket Club on Andrews Walk off Sandford Road, Sittingbourne, ME10 1YT.