Grid ref: TM 035 223 (click for o/s map)
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This Local Nature Reserve on the east bank of the River Colne includes Wivenhoe Wood, a fine old coppice woodland with many sweet chestnut trees, alongside grassland and scrub that once belonged to Lower Lodge Farm, a section of tidal foreshore with saltmarsh, and at the southern end an area of former grazing marsh.
Reed and sedge warblers nest in the marshland and whitethroats in the scrub. An area of saltmarsh to the west of the railway line can be reached via a level crossing and is used by wading birds such as redshank.
From the sea wall path there are good views of the inner estuary of the Colne and over the ditches, dykes and ponds of the marsh. Unusual plants like strawberry clover and slender hare's-ear grow here, and it has a rich insect life, with many dragonflies and damselflies on the wing in summer and stag beetles blundering in from Wivenhoe Wood to the north
Access via Rosabelle Avenue, a turning off The Avenue (B1028) north of Wivenhoe centre, or from the south via the sea wall path or public footpaths alongside the railway. SatNav: CO7 9GW.
Wivenhoe station is a few minutes' walk from Ferry Marsh and from the southern tip of Wivenhoe Wood. Regular buses run from Colchester to Wivenhoe.
Accessible at all times.
May/June for birdsong in the woods and scrub; July/August for insects along the woodland edge and in clearings, and around the marsh and foreshore
A surfaced path runs from the car park at the end of Rosabelle Avenue to the picnic site. The footpath west of the railway is surfaced also.
Leaflets available from Council offices or call 01206 853588.