Please do not park on Vicarage Road in Waresley when visiting the woods. Our car park on Waresley Road is always open and free to park in. PLEASE NOTE the information under 'opening times' in the side bar to the right. Note also that the paths are very muddy and slippery at the moment, so wear wellies and bring a walking stick if needed.
Fine ancient woodland, carpeted with oxlips, bluebells and violets in the spring
Waresley and Gransden Woods are adjoining ancient oak-ash woods, home to many breeding birds. An abundance of wildflowers attracts many insects and over 500 species of moth and butterfly have been recorded here. There are many open grassy areas and in spring the ground is carpeted with bluebells, violets and oxlips.
In the first half of the 20th century, the wood was harvested for timber. It was replanted with oaks and sycamores, creating areas that are very different from the undisturbed broadleaved woodland and traditional coppice plots. The woods are home to many breeding birds. In summer the rides and glades are filled with wildflowers and insects that feed on their nectar, including butterflies such as the speckled wood. Over 500 species of moth and butterfly have been recorded here!
There are also more open, grassy areas where heavy horses may have been rested during timber extraction. In spring, the woodland floor becomes a carpet of bluebells, violets and oxlips. A stream marks the boundary between the two woods, and is spanned by several small bridges.
This site is part of the West Cambridgeshire Hundreds Living Landscape Scheme.The Wildlife Trust has purchased the reserve in sections since 1976 and now owns all but one area in the north.
Read @DerekNeimann's Guardian blogpost about Waresley Wood's ash trees.
For more information and photos visit the Voluntary Warden's website www.waresleywood.co.uk
The map below is for indication purposes only and does not show the Wildlife Trusts definitive land boundary.
Species and habitats
Nearby nature reserves
Nature reserve map
Contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right 2012. For indicative purposes does not show exact boundaries.