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Stour Wood

135ac/55ha  SSSI

Grid ref: TM 192 311

Updated 31/12/2023.

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Stour Wood is one of the best ancient sweet chestnut woods in Essex. It was worked as coppice until the 1970s and coppicing has been resumed by RSPB on a long (20-year) cycle. It has a mixture of trees apart from sweet chestnut, including a few surviving small-leaved lime and many field maple on the edge of the wood.

It has some unusual flowers, including sweet woodruff and early purple orchid.

It is full of birdsong in spring and early summer. Later in summer look out for white admiral and silver-washed fritillary butterflies.


North of the B1352 from Ramsey to Manningtree, between the villages of Wrabness and Ramsey. The main entrance to Stour Wood, with car park, is signposted from the road. SatNav: CO12 5ND.

Stour Wood is about 800m walk from Wrabness station via a public footpath. Buses from Colchester to Harwich via Wrabness run along the B1352.

Accessible at all times.

May and June, when wild flowers are everywhere and migrant birds such as the nightingale are in full voice; autumn and winter for the hardy and the birdwatcher, for good views of the birds in Copperas Bay.

Wheelchair trail in Stour Wood.

© Roger Jones