New visitor centre

The Kent Mining Heritage Foundation has received funding towards the development and support of the Betteshanger Project, which aims to expand the heritage offering in the area.

The project recently passed its £1 million mark for funding and is already in its first phase. This includes the development of a new visitor centre, opening this year, which will encompass the Kent Mining Museum and Green Energy Centre, located in Betteshanger Park, Kent.

The Kent Mining Museum will allow visitors to explore the lives of miners in Kent, the history of coalmining, and how coal is formed.

The Green Energy Centre will be fully accessible for groups and visitors will get to see how green energy is created and the technology used to manage it.

The new visitor centre will also provide retail, cycling facilities, education, conferencing, events, gardens and public spaces, suitable for group visits, and will work with the museum and energy centre to offer insight into the heritage of the area.

It will also act as a gateway to the 250-acre country park and looks to bring together the project’s three aims; heritage, sustainability, and health and wellbeing.

Groups visiting the new centre and park can enjoy a variety of activities, from archery, to cycling, to geocaching.

More about the project

Mark Lumsdon-Taylor, Hadlow Group and chair of Kent Mining Heritage Foundation, commented: “The Betteshanger Project will have such a vast impact, not only on the East Kent community, but across the whole county and reaching to international audiences.” 

Recent supporters of the campaign that have helped the Foundation break the £1m mark, include the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, Rochester Bridge Trust and the Roger de Haan Charitable Trust, amongst others. 

Betteshanger Park is built upon the history of Betteshanger Colliery which shaped the landscape. For almost ninety years, mining was at the heart of the East Kent community, with the Kent Coalfield employing over 150,000 men and extracting over one hundred million tonnes of coal.

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