T: 01227 816588/816666
ISO 14001 Environmental Management
Landscape and Grounds Management
The Estates Department's Landscape and Grounds Management team are responsible for the landscape and management of works carried out on the 300 acres of land at the Canterbury campus, as well as the campus at Medway. The University of Kent is extremely proud of its green spaces and sports facilities and the Landscape and Grounds Management team take great care and pride in managing them, making them an attractive and pleasant environment for staff, students and visitors to enjoy.
The main Canterbury campus is located on top of the ridge, overlooking the historic cathedral city of Canterbury which give some fantastic views of the city and cathedral, situated in the valley below.
The campus has many key features that the Landscape and Grounds Management team maintain.
- Amenity grassland
- Shrub and border beds
- Hedge rows
- Woodland locations
- Sport facilities
We are also responsible for keeping the campus free of snow and ice in the event of extreme cold weather.
The natural soil is heavy clay mixed with flint and builders' rubble left behind when the University was built in the 1960s. This is not an ideal growing medium for many trees and shrubs - initial establishment and growth is slow and difficult. Once the plants have become established, though, the clay holds onto nutrients and water so the growth is generally good. Now well established, the campus grounds provide a wide variety of habitat with grassed, planted and water areas which help to support a large variety of plant and animal species from which students, staff and visitors benefit. Landscape and Grounds Management work in conjunction with the Sustainability team who make sure that we adhere to legislation and understand the policies needed to perform our roles.
The Landscape and Grounds Management Service Level Statement provides a comprehensive overview of the services offered.
Please note that the Landscape and Grounds Management team are not responsible for the collection of litter around the campus. Please contact Estates Customer Services for any if you have an enquiry regarding litter.
A comprehensive preventative maintenance schedule is undertaken throughout the year as agreed with the Head of FM and the Landscape and Grounds Supervisor. This includes but is not restricted to: mowing, hedge cutting, spraying and gardening, leaf clearing, all tree works, pitch line marking and fertilising.
All landscape and grounds related defects should be reported to Estates Customer Services on telephone extension 16666 or via the online defect system. Bespoke requests are chargeable. If you would like a price for work, please log the details using our rechargeable works request form.
The University's Biodiversity and Sustainable Landscaping Strategy has been developed as part of our Environmental Management System which is certified to ISO14001:2015. This plan ensures that sustainability becomes an integral part of the day-to-day running of the University's outdoor spaces, through identification of the status of its habitats and the species present, and identifies key objectives for maintaining and enhancing biodiversity.
The various habitats across campus are home to a wide variety of species including a number of protected species, most notable of which is the Great Crested Newt. The Landscape and Grounds team ensures the protection of all species through compliance with all relavant legislation including the Wildlife and Countryside Act. Staff from the Landscape and Grounds team are able to advise staff from other areas including Projects and Facilities Management on their responsibilities towards species and habitat protection.
The woodland areas are of great importance to the University and they are managed by the Landscape and Grounds Management team in accordance with Forestry Commission guidelines and recommendations. This sometimes means that certain trees have to be felled because of disease or instability. A Woodland Management Plan was prepared in September 2015 to include coppicing and other woodland management practices for Bluebell Wood, Park Wood and Brotherhood Wood. Some management of the woodland formed part of the planning requirement for the development of the new Sibson building. Whenever possible information will be given on the web relating to this area of Landscape and Grounds Management work.
There are seven ponds located on the Canterbury campus:
- Upper and lower Eliot College
- Woolf College
- Keynes Duck Pond
- Woody's Culvert
- Beverly Farm House Pond
They are actively managed for biodiversity as appropriate, by the Landscape and Grounds Management team. General pond maintenance is carried out on small sections of all campus ponds annually. Larger restorations are conducted on one pond per year.
Hay meadows/grassland areas
There are a mix of wild flower and hay meadows across the campus. These are maintained as part of the preventative maintenance programme and in line with thre requirements specified in the Biodiversity Management Plan.
Areas of protection and/or high biodiversity sensitivity
A plan of the Canterbury campus has been prepared which indicates protection areas and areas of particular biodiversity sensitivity.
The Landscape and Grounds team are responsible for clearing snow and ice from the University roads and footpaths. If there is a heavy overnight frost, the clearance of ice follows an agreed priority order. Staff do not work during the weekends however, depending on the current or expected weather conditions, a team will be deployed to site to carry out clearing/gritting works if necessary. The Landscape and Grounds Supervisor remains in constant contact with Campus Security at all times and is on extra alert in these situations.