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National Trust: Things to do with the kids in Kent for summer 2017

Round up the family, pack up a picnic and head out into the Kent sunshine.

The National Trust has some simple but special adventures for young explorers to tackle, as school is almost out and nature’s in. From crafts and games to storytelling and woodland trails, there’s ideas for everyone.

Here are six of the highlights.

National Trust. Picture Megan Taylor

National Trust. Picture: Megan Taylor


1. They’ll be busy, but see if you can track down the ants at Emmetts Garden, near Sevenoaks, when you get on the ant trail this summer, running from Saturday, July 1 to Sunday, September 3 between 10am and 4pm each day. £1 per trail with normal entry costs.

2. Need some cuddles? Young visitors to Ightham Mote, near Borough Green, can take part in a teddy bears’ picnic, crafts, trails and quizzes on Themed Thursdays and try a summer activity pack with top tips to tick off your ‘50 things’ lists. Activity packs cost £2, with normal admission.

Ightham Mote. Picture National Trust

Ightham Mote. Picture: National Trust

3. There will be storytelling sessions in the bookshop at Knole in Sevenoaks on Mondays throughout July. Make sure you’re sitting comfortably in the children’s area, surrounded by books, games and cuddly toys, and listen to some magical tales for ages five and under. Storytelling will be on Mondays July 10 and 17 at 11am. Children need to be accompanied.

Knole House in Sevenoaks

Knole House in Sevenoaks


The house is also home for Family Mondays on July 31 and on August 7, 14 and 21 between 11am and 3pm, with family crafts and themes including archaeological discoveries, nature crowns, animal tracks and music in nature. Tudor dressing up days will be held on Friday, August 4, Saturday, August 12, Friday, August 18 and Friday, August 25 from 1pm. Events are free, although donations are welcome.

4. A family trail leads you around the garden and woodland at Chartwell, Westerham, this summer. Running until Sunday, September 3, the trail leads you to spot some of the animals which lived at the former home of Sir Winston Churchill over the years. The self-led activity is also a great way to tick off your ‘50 things to do before you’re 11 and three quarters’. £1 per trail, with normal admission fees.

Chartwell is the former home of Sir Winston Churchill.

Chartwell is the former home of Sir Winston Churchill.

5. On Sundays, volunteers cook 18th century delicacies at Quebec House, also in Westerham, according to recipes used by the former resident of the house, Mrs Wolfe. Catch the goodies between 1pm and 4pm each Sunday through the summer and afterwards try tackling a colouring-in sheet in the exhibition room. Normal admission fees apply.

6. Make your own adventures at Scotney Castle, near Lamberhurst, from building a den in a wilderness camp, to exploring the discovery room or following a trail around the house. There will also be a wildlife hunt every Wednesday. Normal admission fees apply.

The fairytale backdrop at Scotney Castle

The fairytale backdrop at Scotney Castle

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