Accessibility and amenities
The main access point is from the car park off Heather Lane (OS grid reference SK383119) between the villages of Heather and Normanton Le Heath. Access for visitors by vehicle is discouraged via School Lane, Normanton le Heath, as it is narrow and can be hazardous.
Pedestrian access gates are of an all-abilities model with a RADAR key padlock (bright red) that allows the latch to be pulled back fully and the gate swung wide open to allow access by mobility buggies, etc. The rest of the gates are standard kissing gates.
A variety of permissive footpaths, mostly grassed, run through and around the site, linking it to surrounding woodland, including Springfield Wood and Normanton Wood. However, there are three way-marked surfaced paths, free of obstructions, which provide circular trails running through the new woodland from the car park to the lake, the main loop giving full access to wheelchair and pushchair users.The white route extends to 3km (almost two miles) and has a rather ornate pattern as it connects the 61 Diamond Jubilee Groves before going past the lake and up to the ancient woodland at the far end of the site, and then returning. The other two are of medium and shorter length.
A number of long but relatively gentle slopes are encountered when first entering the wood from the car park.
A surfaced bridle path installed by UK Coal runs along the eastern boundary adjacent to Bowers Brook to the northern corner, connecting into the surrounding bridle path network.
The nearest toilets are in Coalville Market (opening: Monday to Saturday 9am to 5pm - Sunday 10am - 4pm) which has disabled and baby changing facilities; and Derby Road in Ashby (opening: Monday to Saturday 9am to 5pm) which offers baby changing facilities and disabled facilities by radar key.
Toilet facilities are also available for customers of Cattows Farm and Shop, 10-minutes drive away (The Cattows Farm Shop, Cattows Farm, Swepstone Road, Heather, Leicestershire. LE67 2RF. cattowsfarm.co.uk). They have a toilet for the disabled and baby changing facilities, but all are housed in an outside block and can be busy during peak times.
The nearest refreshments are available at Cattows Farm - see above.
Their tea room is open Mon - Sat: 9.30am - 4.30pm; Sun: 9.30am - 4.00pm. Hot meals, daily specials and Sunday lunch are served until 3.00pm.
Otherwise, there is a range of restaurants and snack bars in Ashby-de-la-Zouch, 6.4km (four miles) away or Coalville, 11.3 (seven miles) away. Visit: goleicestershire.com
Accommodation and tourist information
Nearest accommodation is at Ashby-de-la-Zouch, four miles away or Coalville, seven miles away. Visit: goleicestershire.com
There is a car park on Heather Lane which is signed from the roadside. It has space for 53 cars and is locked mornings and evenings. It opens at 8am daily and closes at 8pm from April-October and 5pm from November-March.
The car park also includes space for coaches but access needs to be arranged prior to visiting so the height barrier can be raised.