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A small yet impressive wood of majestic beeches

Beechwoods was originally planted in the 1840s, and Medieval plough terraces are still visible beneath the trees. The original beech trees are all mature, and beech-bark fungi combined with autumn gales has caused many of them to fall in recent years. Saplings have sprung up in the gaps, and the wood is now developing a more varied structure. West of the old wood, local people planted a new area of broadleaved trees in 1992. These trees will mature to provide a range of habitats to complement the old wood.

Beneath the beech trees, delicate white helleborine orchids thrive on the dry chalky soil, pushing up their flowering spikes in the spring before the beech leaves cast their deep, cool shade. These orchids are usually found under beech, and this nature reserve is one of their most northerly outposts. In years with a good beech-mast crop, large flocks of bramblings gather to exploit the rich food source.  


Listen here to an episode of Ramblings with Clare Balding and Robert Macfarlane as they take a walk through Beechwoods nature reserves.


The map below is for indication purposes only and does not show the Wildlife Trusts definitive land boundary.

Species and habitats

Beech, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Nuthatch, Hoverfly

Nearby nature reserves

Cherry Hinton Chalk Pits
1 miles - Wildlife Trust for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire
Fulbourn Fen
3 miles - Wildlife Trust for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire
Trumpington Meadows
3 miles - Wildlife Trust for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire

Nature reserve map

Contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right 2012. For indicative purposes does not show exact boundaries.

Reserve information

Wort's Causeway
CB22 3BF
Map reference
TL 485 547
Great for...
a family day out
ancient trees
lichens and mosses
Get directions
Find out here
Public transport
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Opening Times
Open at all times
9.70 hectares
Local Nature Reserve (LNR)
Living Landscape schemes
Cambridgeshire Chalk
Walking information
Wood can be dangerous in high winds because the beeches may shed branches
Park in layby on Wort's Causeway, opposite the wood
Dogs must be on lead
Grazing animals
Reserve manager
Tel: 01954 713500