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Rushy Mead


Grid ref: TL 497 197 (click for o/s map)

Updated 25/08/2014

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Until the 19505 Rushy Mead was occupied by a pumping station. It was restored to riverside meadows through an agreement between the site owners, Thames Water plc, Wimpey Homes, who made a generous contribution towards running costs, and Essex Wildlife Trust, who manage it now.

The low ground has water near the surface all year, and there are good areas of sedge and reed. Their tall, dense growth provides cover for sedge and reed warbler in summer, and for snipe and water rail in winter.

The northern end of the site has developed into mature alder woodland with ash and willow. It is a particularly good area for birds, including the uncommon willow tit. Yellow iris and wild angelica are just two of the many plants that flower here in summer.

A network of drainage ditches supports a rich variety of aquatic wildlife including marsh marigold, dragonflies and water beetles.

The drier ground has areas of scrubby woodland and chalky grassland. The latter supports a good variety of wild flowers including bee orchid and wild carrot


One mile south of Bishop's Stortford, lying between the A1060 road to Hatfield Heath and the River Stort. It can be entered from the A1060 or from the towpath running alongside the Stort Navigation.

800m walk from Bishop's Stortford station (BR Liverpool St–Cambridge): head south along the towpath. Hourly bus service from Bishop's Stortford station passes the main entrance on the A1060.

Accessible at all times.

Spring and summer for flowers, birds and insect life.

Photo © David Harrison