Grid ref: TQ 686 812 (click for o/s map)
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This is one of the largest reedbeds in Essex, created by gravel extraction in the 1920s, together with areas of marsh and rough grassland.
In spring and summer the reedbeds attract breeding birds, including reed bunting, reed warbler and sedge warbler. Winter brings in bearded tits, grey wagtail and snipe – best seen along the Hassenbrooke, a small reed-lined river bisecting the reserve that crosses under the footpath.
Reptiles frequent the rough grassland, and harvest mice nest among the reeds.
A footpath turns off just beyond the footbridge and leads through flower-rich grassland overlooking wetlands and Mucking Creek, towards Thurrock Thameside Nature Park.
Access from London Road in Stanford-le-Hope. Turn south down Butts Lane then left into Mucking Wharf Road. Please park considerately by the former church at the start of the footpath. SatNav: SS17 0RN.
About 20 minutes' walk from Stanford station. Turn right outside the station then right down Wharf Road. Access footpath on the right after the railway bridge.
Accessible at all times.
Late spring and summer for breeding birds and flowering plants; winter for visiting birds such as bearded tits.
Please keep to the marked footpaths, which provide good views over the whole area.