Questions about Trust Reserves

On this page you'll find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about reserves. If they don't answer your query please feel free to contact us by email or call us on 01905 754 919.

How do I get to your reserves?

I’ve heard that I need a permit to visit Upton Warren? Is that true and, if so, how do I get one?

Where can I buy a guide to your nature reserves?

What is ash dieback and what are you doing it about it on your reserves?

Where can I see the best bluebells on your reserves?

Where can I see wild daffodils on your reserves?

Which reserves are suitable for disabled people?

Is there any charge for visiting your reserves if I am not a member?

Which reserves are open to the public?

I would like to visit the Gwen Finch and the reserves. Is there a hide and do I need a code for access?

Can I take my dog to Trust reserves?

If I join Worcestershire Wildlife Trust will I be able to visit WT reserves in other counties free of charge?

Can I bring a group or tour party to your reserves?

I’d like to report an overhanging and/or potentially dangerous trees on a Trust reserve. How do I contact you?

How do I get to your reserves?

Please follow the directions for individual reserves on the relevant pages. These can be accessed by clicking on the main nature reserves finder page.

Where can I buy a guide to your nature reserves?

Nature reserve guides are available from our headquarters at Lower Smite Farm or from our website shop.

I’ve heard that I need a permit to visit Upton Warren? Is that true and, if so, how do I get one?

Entry is free to those carrying Wildlife Trust Membership Cards (excepting Norfolk Trust Members). Please carry your membership card with you when visiting UW. Anyone not in possession of a membership card must purchase a £3 Daily Permit. Permits can be purchased from Wardens on site (if you come across one) or the Sailing Centre or in advance from Worcestershire Wildlife Trust by email or post.

What is ash dieback and what are you doing it about it on your reserves?

Ash dieback
Ash dieback Hymenoscyphus fraxineus is a chronic fungal disease that has been spreading across the UK. It was first recorded in Worcestershire in 2016, and now appears to be widespread in the county.

Symptoms
The first symptoms are the blackening of leaves on the tips of small branches especially noticeable in saplings but also occurring in bigger trees. In saplings this is followed by blackened strips on the main stem and small branches and the whole sapling soon dies. In bigger trees there may be a short resurgence of new growth. Branches soon die-back and eventually the whole tree dies.

Control
The infection is widely spread by wind-borne fungal spores and at present there is no effective way to prevent the spread of the disease. Therefore no additional bio-security measures are being put in place on our reserves.

Response
Worcestershire Wildlife Trust is concerned about the impacts of ash dieback on our woodlands and in the wider countryside and are following current research into viable ways to reduce the spread and impact of the disease.

The Trust strongly believes that to maintain biodiversity in woodlands they must be managed using forestry techniques to create suitable structure.

As our forestry is undertaken to promote biodiversity and whilst we maximise impact from any timber produced as a by-product of that work, we have assessed the impacts of ash dieback on our infected sites and are not currently planning to proactively fell infected trees or undertake replanting with alternative species. In coppice areas we will continue layering existing coppice stools where appropriate.

We will continue to review the impacts, however at present we believe that while on woodland nature reserves the loss of some or all ash will have negative impacts on some specific species, the opening of the canopy may produce some benefits while the planting of unsuitable alternate species would compound the negative impact of ash dieback on woodland ground flora and fauna.

Health and safety
We already monitor our woodlands to reduce risks to a level reasonable for a natural environment, but will be undertaking an additional assessment of higher risk areas such as public footpaths, road sides and car parks on our sites.
 

Where can I see the best bluebells on your reserves?

Our reserves at Tiddesley Wood, Beacon Wood, The Knapp and Papermill and Grafton Wood all have fine shows of bluebells in spring. These will be variable depending on the season and the timing will also vary somewhat from year to year. More details are available at the reserves pages on the links above.

Where can I see wild daffodils on your reserves?

Duke of York Meadow has a fine show of wild daffodils, usually at their best on or just before Easter in most years. The daffodils can be viewed from the small car park, but please be aware that a permit is required to access the meadow. Picking or uprooting the daffodils is not allowed and is illegal under UK law.

Which reserves are suitable for disabled people?

Tiddesley Wood has a car park and a rough stoned track through the centre of the wood, however this is not a flat surface and there are some steep gradients further into the wood. Both Upton Warren and Broadway Gravel Pit have disabled access hides.

Is there any charge for visiting your reserves if I am not a member?

The only site where there is an access charge for non-members is the wetland reserve at Upton Warren. Please remember that some of our reserves are not open to visitors - members or non-members - except by prior arrangement and under a special permit. 

Which reserves are open to the public?

While we encourage enjoyment of our reserves, some of our more sensitive or difficult to access sites are closed to the public. This may be seasonal in some cases, so please check the reserves handbook, available from the Trust, or the individual reserves pages on the website before visiting a reserve.

I would like to visit the Gwen Finch and the reserves. Is there a hide and do I need a code for access?

Gwen Finch is a closed site and the Trust does not allow access without a permit. The neighbouring John Bennett reserve, developed by the Wildlife Trust in co-operation with the landowner, Natural England and the Environment Agency, has a hide and is accessible to the public. The Wildlife Trust do not manage the reserve, but the landowner has given permission for us to offer the code to the lock to interested birdwatchers. The code is C2678X. Please ensure the lock is engaged if you are the last to leave the hide.

Please note that this is a private nature reserve and that during winter there may be the occasional pheasant shoot.

Can I take my dog to Trust reserves?

On most of our sites we allow visitors to visit with their dogs but require owners to keep them on the lead. However on some sites, such as Upton Warren, we do not allow dogs at all. Please check on the individual reserve page for details before visiting a reserve.

If I join Worcestershire Wildlife Trust will I be able to visit WT reserves in other counties free of charge?

The majority of Wildlife Trust reserves around the country are free to members and many are free to all. Some reserves charge a small entry fee to help with upkeep, and visitors are sometimes asked to pay a charge to visitor centres that provide extra facilities. If you are planning a visit to another county then you might like to get in touch with the local Wildlife Trust in advance for further details.

Can I bring a group or tour party to your reserves?

In many cases we will be happy to allow access to groups, however there may be reasons why a group visit would not be appropriate on a particular site or at a specific time, perhaps because of conflicts with management activity for example. Please contact the Reserves Officer for the site you wish to visit on on 01905 754919 to discuss whether a visit by your group is appropriate to the reserve at that time.

I’d like to report an overhanging and/or potentially dangerous tree on a Trust reserve. How do I contact you?

You'll need to talk to the relevant Conservation Officer responsible for the particular nature reserve.  Please call us on 01905 754919 or email us and we'll direct your query to the appropriate member of staff.