Please note that the back third of the woodland is in private ownership and is not accessible. You can download our Trench Wood reserve map or read on-site signage.
This is an ancient woodland with areas of scrub & coppice, making it ideal for butterflies & warblers.
Roughly two-thirds of this large ancient woodland make up our nature reserve at Trench Wood. The woodland is jointly managed with Butterfly Conservation because of its importance for woodland butterflies.
Historically the woodland was managed by coppicing - chopping down trees almost to the ground to encourage regeneration. When done on a cycle this ensures a constant variety of habitats for wildlife. In the 1960s the wood was owned by Harris Brush Company to provide wood for their brush handles. They allowed some native trees to grow but also planted non-native trees in the woodland. We've been gradually clearing the latter and encouraging the growth of native trees and shrubs.
Current management of the wood helps to ensure a matrix of habitats that can support migrant warblers and butterflies. An excellent system of rides and paths provide important open areas for tall herbs, grassland plants and orchids such as greater butterfly orchid, meadow saffron, sawwort and herb-Paris.
Visitors should look out for white admiral, white-letter hairstreak and brown hairstreak butterflies as well as the large numbers of moths that have been recorded.
During the spring months visitors should also keep a look out for the nationally rare leaf-rolling weevil, Byctiscus populi. This beetle is only known from ten sites in the UK and relies on young growth of aspen trees.