Join us at Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Wood, Leics to discover a thriving 10-year-old wood, chat royal trees and celebrate the Platinum Jubilee. We meet with site manager David Logan to explore the site's connections with the royal family, its special art features and some of the wildlife, sights and sounds you might encounter on a visit.

Site manager David lets us in to some of the site's secrets, including:

  • what was once the biggest hole in Europe – an open cast coal mine that now forms a lake, complete with bird hide
  • the welcome barn, featuring an intricate mosaic laid down by local volunteers
  • the area's rich Roman history, some of which remains hidden beneath the land
  • a rather unusual example of land sculpture that might inspire one to break out into song!

We also meet Kerrie, one of the key architects of the site's Royal Groves, who describes the thinking behind the very special tree planting designed to celebrate Her Majesty's reign. Volunteer Gerald also joins us to reflect on the changes he's seen throughout his tenure at this young wood, and how the local community has been pivotal in shaping its growth.

Listen to the podcast now on iTunesLibsyn or Soundcloud. Please subscribe if you want to hear more woodland adventures and don’t forget to rate us or leave a review!

Voiceover: You are listening to Woodland Walks, a podcast for the Woodland Trust presented by Adam Shaw. We protect and plant trees for people to enjoy, to fight climate change and to help wildlife thrive.
Adam: Well, like all good podcasts let's start with a story and this one obviously is about a tree. It stands in a quiet part of central London called Lincoln's Inn Fields – the centre of the legal profession.
It sits, well, just outside of a gated 11-acres of parkland in one of the otherwise busiest and noisiest parts of the country. It was planted in 1953 and since then the well-heeled men and women of the legal profession, who worked there, often sheltered under its branches, passed it by, both ignoring it and perhaps enjoying it. In the 70 years that tree has been growing, there have been many monumental events and world figures who have both entered and left the stage.
When it was first planted, Winston Churchill was Prime Minister. Since then, entering and often leaving the limelight – Elvis Presley, Martin Luther King, Yuri Gagarin, The Beatles, Marilyn Monroe, John F Kennedy, video players were invented, personal computers and mobile phones were created, and there have been 15 prime ministers. But in all that time, as a living witness to that history of the new Elizabethan Age, there has been only one monarch – Queen Elizabeth II. No one has played such a long-lived part in the nation's history as the Queen.
The tree that still stands by Lincoln's Inn Fields is one of literally millions that have been planted in the name of the Queen.
Trees, of course, have an even longer perspective on time than Her Majesty but both stand as witnesses and part of history stretching back and reaching forward far beyond the timescales most of us live by.
It's very fitting, therefore, that on this Platinum Jubilee the Woodland Trust has partnered with the Queen's Green Canopy Project to invite everyone across the UK to plant a network of trees, avenues, copse, and whole woodlands, in honour of the Queen's service and legacy
From a single sapling in a garden to a whole wood, the aim is to create 70 Platinum Jubilee Woods of 70 acres each – every tree bringing benefits for people, wildlife and climate – now and for the future.
And so, I took this opportunity to visit the Trust's Diamond Jubilee Wood in Leicestershire, where I met the man responsible for looking after the woodland, David Logan.
David: So, this is Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Woods and it's a flagship site of a scheme that the Woodland Trust has to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee.
So, what we endeavoured to do, and we've successfully done. We created 75+ woods of 60 acres or more and they were the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Woods. And, this is the flagship one of those woods, making it the largest single-owned block of native broadleaf woodland in the National Forest area.
Adam: What immediate, I mean, we've not really gone in yet, but what immediately surprises me is this is really quite, well, it's a very young wood. Yet, it already but quite mature I mean, were these species, was this all planted?
David: You're looking at a hedgerow and beyond that are the trees at the same height as the hedgerow. So yeah no, it is to me, you know, a refute to people who say 'why bother planting woods because you never get to walk under the bows of the trees' but these, only ten years ago this was planted and when you get into the site, you're definitely in a wood now 10 years later.
Adam: those trees are all on the quite tall…
David: They must be 10-12 feet tall.
Adam: Yeah, looks even taller to me but then I'm unsure. Okay, go on, lead on. Tell me a bit about then what this site sort of is, why it's special, you know, biologically special?
David: Because of, it's big! You get that really wild feeling when you're here. So, you know, 267 hectares are completely devoted to nature. There's not, well, I don't think there's anywhere else particularly like that in this part of the country. And, so yeah, it does stand out. We get lots of different wildlife: lots of birds, lots of invertebrates, butterflies and a really good show of wildflowers as well. We will see some of them.
Adam: And what was here before? Was it just an empty field?
David: No. So, it was an open cast coal mine. So, the whole lot was owned by UK Coal and then the central part of it where the lake is was the largest hole in Europe! When it was done 750,000 tonnes of coal came out.
Adam: Wow! So, I mean, there's no sign of that at all, because open cast mining can be a real scar on the land, can't it? I mean, it doesn't look pretty and then yet is there still a hole, was that all backfilled?
David: That's all backfilled yeah so all of the substrate that wasn't coal will have been stored around the site and then all put back in the hole.
Adam: How long have you been here then?
David: So, I've been site manager for three years now, so....
Adam: Right.
David: Yeah, seen it develop.
Adam: So, what sort of, I mean, three years is not a long time, especially in the life span of trees, but what sort of changes have you seen over that period?
David: I think the biggest one recently is we took away all of the tree tubes and the fencing that the original kind of planting scheme relied on to protect it from deer and rabbits. Yeah, which has completely changed the way the site feels. So, no more sea of plastic tubes and no more fences to get in the way. So, you can get to walk where you like now, as well as the wildlife can get around the site a bit easier, and it really has changed the way it all feels
Adam: In terms of the local community engagement and their use of this wood, what’s that like?
David: It's been great. Yeah, been great right from the outset, so, we had a lot of community involvement with the original planting and then again with extensions, voluntarily.
Adam: And how well used is it by the locals then?
David: Yeah, yeah, very well used, very rarely do you ever come to the car park and there's less than five cars in it.
Adam: We're coming to, I can see... what's that building over there? That looks very pretty!
David: So, that is what we call the welcome barn. So, I've got two buildings I've got on this site. I've got the welcome barn and I've got bird hide as well.
Adam: Wow! So, what happens? Is there someone with tea and crumpets in the welcome barn for us?
David: Unfortunately not no, but there are some interpretation panels that tell you the story of the site and a nice mosaic that was made by the volunteers as well, at the beginning of the site. And then a little compost toilet round the back!
Adam: Laughs Okay that's good, good to know, good to know! And tell me about the bird hide then.
David: So, the bird hide is yet another lovely building overlooking a lake. So, the lake was kind of formed by the sinking of the coal mine and the soil around it, and yeah, so just a nice bird hide, we’ll go and look at it.
Adam: What sort of birds do you get?
David: The most exciting bird that we've had here is a hen harrier.
Adam: Right! Wow! And look, and this welcome barn, this also seems to be unusual for a Woodland Trust site? You don't normally see these things.
David: Don't normally get a building no, I’m lucky to have two!
Adam: And look at... really, really lovely sort of mosaic on the floor – Woodland Trust mosaic which sort of looks quite 1950s like... Do you know how long this…? This can't be that...?
David: No no, that was built when the barn was built and the site was created in 2012 and it's meant to, kind of, reflect the Roman history of the site. So, we’ve got a Roman road that we just crossed over there, and then we've got two areas of our underlining archaeology which we know are Roman on the site. And so, we know there's certainly a lot of Roman activity, hence a Romanesque kind of mosaic.
Adam: So, just explain a bit about where we are.
David: So, these are called the groves – The Royal Groves – as part of Royal Groves Walk, and as part of the creation of the site. There was a royal Grove created for each year of the Queen's reign, so, they’re in a series of circles and each one has a post and people can sponsor the grove and the post and then they get their little plaque added to the grove post for their year. I believe that certain years become more popular than others for various reasons and, but yeah, you'll see all these names. My favourite one, I think, is just this one. This grove is dedicated to the dahlia.
Adam: That’s fantastic laugh dahlia appreciation society sponsors. So, tell me a bit about the trees we're seeing here, there's clearly a whole mixture.
David: Yes. So, they’re all native broadleaf trees. We have got birch and oak going round. There is no ash in this part of the wood because ash dieback was kind of discovered just as the planting was going ahead and so we’re lucky. There is a compartment in the north which got ash put into it. You might see the occasional ash tree that's self-set. So, we've got a Jubilee Grove Trail going on at the weekend for the... to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee that's coming up, encouraging people to, kind of, wander around the trails, and we're going to have these tree rings, sections of a tree... one per decade of the Queen's reign and with various large events that happen within that decade there will be a tree ring.
Adam: Will that be permanent?
David: No, it'll just be for the month of June and there will be a large wicker crown somewhere onsite as well.
Adam: That's all happening next weekend?
David: Well, late this week, next weekend.
Adam: You've got a lot of work to do. I'm amazed you’ve got the time spare to wander around with me.
David: Yeah well. Yeah, yeah there's always... it's always a rare commodity time I'm afraid Adam.
Adam: Now you didn't design this here? You're a new boy!
David: I am a new boy here!
Adam: So, who actually designed it?
David: So, it was a lady called Kerrie who is here, here now. She knows lots more about the groves than me as the designer and helped put it all in.
Adam: Brilliant, hi Kerrie!
Kerrie: Hi Adam. I think I don't think I want to say that I designed the wood but...
Adam: I was building you up!
Kerrie: You were, thank you, but the layout of the groves and... I was certainly involved in the design of the concept and then how we spoke to individuals about whether they would like to be involved in this. So, it was an opportunity for families to dedicate their own acre of woodland and help us develop this wood, as well as being part of a feature that enables you to walk through the Queen's reign. Kind of, physically walk through every year of the Queen's reign, so it's really special.
Adam: Which is amazing, isn’t it?
Kerrie: Yes, it is.
Adam: Tell me a bit about this royal connection because this wasn't, sort of, just a random, sort of, marketing idea. There's a really good basis for this royal connection isn't there?
Kerrie: Absolutely, yeah so, at the Woodland Trust in 2011 we started a project to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee – so, sixty years of the Queen's reign – and we wanted to enable people across the country to plant trees and create woodland.
We did that in a number of ways. So, we had this aspiration to create sixty Diamond Woods each of 60-acres in size, which is a big, really big commitment! And we also encourage people to create Jubilee Woods which were much smaller copses of trees in community spaces. And we distributed trees to schools and communities all across the country. Actually, it was hugely successful so the wood we are here at today is the Woodland Trust's flagship Diamond Wood. And then we had landowners and organisations and local authorities who also wanted to be involved.
We needed to create 60-acre woods, we didn't know if we'd get to sixty actually inaudible we did get to sixty, we surpassed that, we had seventy-five woods at that scale created!
Adam: So, seventy-five 60-acre wood
Kerrie: Plus woods yeah, amazing, so, it's the first sixty of the Diamond Woods and then we have fifteen woods that we call the Princess Woods.
Adam: Amazing, and so this was to commemorate that reign, and this is a lovely theme though! You can wander through the years of the Queen's reign. But the royal connection to woods is long and deep, isn't it?
Kerrie: It is yeah. So, we were really fortunate that Her Royal Highness the Princess Royal was patron of that project. But there's a long and well-established connection between the royal family and tree planting, and as part of the project that we did we wanted to map all the woods that were created, and the trees that were planted. So, we copied...
Adam: So, for the, for the queen?
Kerrie: For the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. So actually, we took inspiration and sort of copied the Royal Record that had been done previously to mark a coronation. So, we actually have physically created and produced, published a Royal Record which is a huge red tome and that charts where all those trees are. And this is something that had already been done before the Queen’s father. It’s actually very heavy and so we have a copy at our office in Grantham, there is a copy in the British Library, and we gave a copy both to the Princess Royal and to the Queen.
Adam: There are lots of royal connections to trees and tree planting even beyond Queen Elizabeth. So, tell me a bit about that.
Kerrie: That's right, yes. So, in the 1660s Charles II commissioned several avenues of sweet chestnut and elm in Greenwich Park and in 1651 he hid from pursuers inside an ancient oak during the English Civil War. and I think that's one of the reasons actually that you see so many pubs called the Royal Oak.
Adam: Right okay because he hid in one?
Kerrie: He hid in one yeah.
Adam: Now you came... when did you see the hole in the ground? This was an open cast mine?
Kerrie: Yes.
Adam: You saw that?
Kerrie: Yes, before any trees were here. So, I can't believe it's been several years since I've been here today, and it is now it's a wood!
Adam: Yeah, there is no sign of that is there?
Kerrie: No absolutely not, a complete transformation.
Adam: It is amazing, isn't it? How quickly really that the natural world can recover. I mean, it needs a bit of help obviously and certainly in this circumstance. But no sign of what must have been really quite horrific bit of landscaping.
Kerrie: Yeah. I think given how stark it felt at the beginning and when we first saw all trees grow in the ground here. It is genuinely remarkable for the transformation in a ten-year period of time! You can hear the birds, the trees are overhead, you know, we've seen butterflies, caterpillars... It really feels like nature has reclaimed this space it's really really exciting
Adam: And when you start, I mean, look it's already done! It’s a success! It looks fantastic, but when you started was this always a ‘this is gonna work’ or at that stage did you think ‘this looks horrible, this might be a disaster, no one might come, no one might get on board with this project’?
Kerrie: Well. I think we all had the vision, we all had hope. There are colleagues of mine that have been working at the Trust for longer than me who knew how this would look. I just didn't know that. This is one of the first projects I worked on so, to see it within ten years, the change that's the thing that I find you know really amazing! I thought I would have to wait much longer, and I'd be coming back with grandchildren to say look at this, but actually, here we are within a decade and it is transformed.
Adam: Brilliant! Alright, well let's move on, let's find David again.
Kerrie: Well, David on a previous visit has actually shown the Princess Royal around this wood. So, in terms of royal connections David has been a royal tour guide.
Adam: Okay, so we have a living royal connection here?
Kerrie: We do.
Adam: Look here’s a little bench, I might just sit here for a while. Brilliant, ah there’s a dedication, what does it say? 'In honour of Sally Whittaker who believed in the beauty of wildlife and protecting it'. I have to say I always do like stopping at a bench and reading those dedications.
Brief pause
So, David, I'm not the only super important person you’ve taken around this woodland, am I?
David: You're not the only super important person maybe, you are charming Adam!
Adam: Ahhh thank you that's very sweet, very sweet laughs come on tell me about the even more important people you've taken around!
David: So, yeah well, the most important person I guess would be Princess Anne, the Princess Royal, alongside Darren [Moorcroft] the CEO of the Woodland Trust. So, I was pretty nervous that morning, to be honest. The CEO, I’d never met him before and obviously a member of the royal family! But yeah no, I remember being nervous at the beginning, and then by the end of the day when I finally said goodbye to Princess Anne I was longing to spend a bit more time with her. She is incredibly charming, yes.
Adam: Yeah. So, we come to a waymark, which? It’s left, is it?
David: Follow the blue and white arrows.
Adam: Right so, if there are... there two different paths? Does blue and white mean anything or?
David: Yeah. So, there’s three waymarked trails around the site and we just happen to be happening on a little bit that's on two of those. So, there's the woodland walk which is the longest walk around the whole of the wood, and then there's the Royal Groves Walk. And then there's the lake walk as well
Adam: Right so, explain a bit about where we're heading off to. You're taking me into the centre of the woods, it feels like?
David: Yeah. So, we're continuing along the groves and eventually, we will get to a broad open vista, and you will be able to see most of the features of the site.
Adam: So, we are already walking out to what looks like a less wooded area.
David: Yes, we're kind of skirting the western edge of the site now and then...
Adam: It's a big site, isn't it? how long will it take to walk over the whole thing do you think? How long are these paths?
David: Like a good tour of every feature of the site here's looking at half a day really, probably, and that's with a bit of pace on.
Adam: I’ve only got short legs laugh so I’d add a few hours. So, there's another one of these posts. Shall we just have a look? 1985 were through to, anyway so...
David: Green woodpecker there, did you hear?
Adam: Oh no wow! I missed out, I've been looking out for posts, I missed the green woodpecker. So, we're just coming out of a rather wooded area into – it suddenly opens up very dramatically – and look at that it's a very different view! So I can see a lovely wildflower meadow almost and then at the bottom a huge lake! A huge lake. So, this is where the old open cast mining just sunk down a bit and has since got naturally filled?
David: Yeah. So, what you're looking at now is the epicentre of the open cast coal mine and obviously the wider landscape around it. So, yeah that's our lake and the end of the groves walk. So, you can just see the final three or four grove posts just heading off down the hill. And then this was an open area left to retain the view and then on the other side of the lake we've got a 5-hectare exclusion zone so there's no paths in that area. Just, no paths in the area, just to allow nature to completely have five hectares for resting birds et cetera.
Adam: Let's go down because I think...
David: We've got something else to show you.
Adam: Sorry go on, rushing ahead, what is it?
David: So, we got this piece of land sculpture that was created by an artist called Rosie Levitan and there are calls every now and again. We get somebody asking if we can put some kind of panel up to explain what it's all about, but the artist herself expressly asked that not to happen. So, I think she is more inclined to allow you to kind of figure it out for yourself or come to your own conclusions as to what it's all about. So, it was created with money from the Arts Council at the inception of the site. So, no money that could have gone into conservation went into creating this piece of art. But yeah, I'll leave you to...
Adam: Sorry, this is it? This is it?
David: This is it; I'll leave you to come to your own conclusions.
Adam: So, when you said a piece of art, I thought you meant like a large statue of something out of wood, but actually, this is a sort of an earth tiered... almost like amphitheatre going downwards counts I think 5 tiers there.
David: It's in a spiral so you can walk around the outside which takes a lot longer than you think!
Adam: Laughs Yeah right I think I might take the direct route down, but to be honest, it seems like a brilliant place to put on a play!
David: Yes! That's my thoughts as well, yeah I'd love to get a play here.
Adam: Yeah! Have you ever gone down then done a soliloquy?
David: Errr not, well, do you want me to?
Adam: Yes, if you if you've got a piece ready laughing
David: Unfortunately, I haven't. I mean I could maybe do a jaunty jig or something like that?
Adam: Yes, well look, we’re recording.
David: Yes, well, no let's not!
Adam: That’s a shame laughing I think you probably come down when there are not many people around. So, if you ever do see a man in Woodland Trust clothing doing a jaunty jig at the bottom of this amphitheatre-like piece of art you know who it is and that he just wouldn't do it for us laughter very nice, very nice.
Adam: So, you're gonna take me down to the lake now?
David: Yeah, take you down to the lake.
Adam: And it's there that we are going to meet one of your volunteers, is that right?
David: That is right yep, a chap called Gerald. So, he's been volunteering with us on the site since the site was created and in various different roles
Adam: And I’ve just gotta say it is beautiful walking down here because there are just huge numbers of buttercups aren’t there?
David: Yes, it is stunning, isn’t it?
Adam: It is stunning, it’s like a sort of it's like a painting! It’s like a painting, brilliant!
David: This is our pond dipping platform.
Adam: There’s a cuckoo
Bird song
Adam: That’s very good, so Gerald, sorry, we’re distracting you. I can see you distracted by some swans coming over with their little babies. They're coming over to investigate you think?
Gerald: I think they are yes! It's good to see it, I, they must be relatively young because a few weeks ago they were they weren't about so it's...
Adam: Right. We’ll let these swans investigate us as I chat to you so tell me. I'm told you do tonnes on this site. What was the local community’s feeling when the trust took over this site and sort of explained what it wanted to do?
Gerald: Generally, really good because you can imagine if you've got an open cast colliery on your doorstep a wood is a big improvement!
Adam: Well, that’s what I was going to say, because sometimes there is, sort of you know, some resistance or sort of misunderstanding about what is trying to happen. But here you go ‘surely this is going to be better for everybody’?
Gerald: Yeah, so I think, overall, the mood was very good. There will be people who say yes but why don't you do this because this is better? We had some debates about whether we could put in some fruit trees, for example, and because we're in a sort of prime growing area in Leicestershire here. And there were debates about whether that was acceptable, whether they were native trees or not. But it was all good healthy discussion and it's interesting to see how the trees have grown and they have particularly grown well on this area here which was the open-cast. When you think – this all was disturbed ground that was put back – the trees have grown probably better here than they have in parts of what was the agricultural land.
Adam: I have to stop because the swans have properly come up to us now. There they are! How involved do you get now, now it's well established what do you actually end doing? Do you come down here most weeks or?
Gerald: It's a couple of times a month at least now. During the pandemic, it was sort of very limited of course, and well before that time, I used to do a monthly walk which was really...
Adam: This is your guided monthly walk?
Gerald: Yes guided, with a series of friends and colleagues.
Adam: Do you have a favourite part of the wood?
Gerald: Actually, probably near the bird hide just along from there.
Adam: Why?
Gerald: I don't know really. It's gotta mix, you got a mix with the water, you got the mix of the trees, a bit of the open meadowland here, and yes, the bird hide does add a bit of character to the place. I think we're lucky to have that there.
Adam: I think David's waiting for me there. Shall we go over and have a chat with him?
We’ve paused for a moment because we’re just passing a black Poplar and a little plaque next to it saying it was planted by BBC Breakfast on 1 June 2012 in celebration of Her Majesty the Queen's Diamond Jubilee.
Gerald: Yes, we have the two black poplars here.
Adam: There's another one here. Was that planted by ITV for balance? Laughter
Gerald: Oh no much more prestigious.
Adam: Oh sorry, yes it was planted by Her Royal Highness the Princess Royal who is patron of the Jubilee Wood Project on the 1 of June 2012. And doing very nicely!
Gerald: Yes, they are indeed! They've both grown quite a bit in the last year, I think.
Adam: Very nice! So, what's the way to the bird hide? Is it round here?
Gerald: Just go up to post on turn left. It's at the moment, hidden by a willow screen. It's a piece of willow art, although it's not particularly obvious
Adam: You can see they’ve been bent over at the bottom haven’t they to form a sort of willow fence.
Gerald: If you were to look down on it from a drone it will be an outline of a skylark. It's a little bit overgrown and that's on our task list for next winter to prune that and try and weave in the lower bit. So, it's going to task our skills! Laughter
Adam: We’re going into the bird hunt now.
We’re in the bird hide. David, ironically having seen lots of birds the moment I get in here actually I can’t – oh I think there is one over there – but do people, is this a good actual spot to be watching birds from?
David: Yeah, yeah because it gives you that cover so the birds don't necessarily know you’re here. It is quite a light bird hide though but it was created in conjunction with the Leicestershire Wildlife Trust, so they must have built a few bird hides, but yes.
Adam: To be honest it's lovely weather today. But if it was raining a little bit this would be a fantastic place just to sit down for a while, wouldn’t it?
David: Yes, it would yeah. Just get out of the rain, I’ve done that a couple of times!
Adam: Right, fantastic, alright well where are we going to next?
David: So, there's just one last thing I would like to show you onsite which is just a short walk back up the hill.
Adam: Okay, what is that?
David: It is called the photographic plinth and so it's basically some encouragement for people to keep on visiting the site year after year. So, what we've got is we've got a plinth that you put your camera on and then a brick area that you supposedly stand on so you can get exactly the same photograph every year. You can visit the site and you can watch your family grow as the wood grows around you
Adam: What a brilliant idea! What a brilliant idea. Okay, okay so David so there is a plinth.
David: Yes, this is our photographic plinth. What it needs is updating, because obviously when this was made smartphones didn't exist and now you wouldn't really get a smartphone balanced on that!
Adam: Yes, that's true
David: It needs a little block bit putting on so you can rest a phone on it.
Adam: So, it's not only the trees which have changed, it's the technology that it's referring to. I’ll tell you what, I mean, obviously I'm going to have my photo taken aren’t I? Can I give you my, I haven’t got a camera, I do have my smartphone, so I'll go stand... I’ll go stand here, and in a couple of years I'll come back and I’ll have even less hair. Hold on a second – do I look better with my hat off or on?
Neither. I feel that was an undiplomatic pause I felt.
David: What I was thinking is that I need to see both to answer correctly, that's why I was thinking. So, I'm gonna take it from the correct position.
There you go
Adam: I'm not confident that looked any good from the look on your face. I'm not going to look at it now I'll check it when I'm home.
There is clearly a lot more to it than I've managed to explore today but what a wonderful treat, on a lovely, beautiful Monday, in this very special royal year! To come and celebrate that here! thank you very much David.
David: that's quite alright Adam it's been a pleasure.
Adam: Well, that was a great walk and thanks of course to everyone who arranged that. It's a fantastic place to visit especially in this Royal Jubilee year. If you know about these things, you can find it at grid reference SK 390132. The nearest train stations are Burton, Tamworth and Loughborough, although they're all a bit of a car journey, I have gotta say, from each of those stations. But if you're looking for a woodland perhaps nearer to you do have a look at the Woodland Trust website which has a special site to find a wood near you it is I do recommend you do that until next time happy wandering.

Voiceover: Thank you for listening to the Woodland Trust Woodland Walks. Join us next month when Adam will be taking another walk in the company of Woodland Trust staff, partners and volunteers. And don’t forget to subscribe to the series on iTunes or wherever you’re listening to us and do give us a review and a rating. Why not send us a recording of your favourite woodland walk to be included in a future podcast. Keep it to a maximum of 5 minutes and please tell us what makes your woodland walk special, or send us an email with details of your favourite walk and what makes it special to you. Send any audio files to and we look forward to hearing from you.

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Don’t miss our previous episodes, including:

  • England’s largest new native wood at Heartwood
  • Loch Arkaig, an ancient Scotland pine forest
  • how trees are making a difference on a Nottinghamshire farm
  • Ben Shieldaig, a great example of Scotland’s rainforest
  • the urban woods and trees of Leeds
  • Joyden’s Wood, a tranquil ancient wood close to London
  • the Trust’s largest site in England – Smithills Estate
  • the ambitious Northern Forest planting project 
  • the new young people’s forest at Mead
  • fascinating staff stories
  • a tour of our president Clive Anderson's garden
  • special tree-themed interviews with celebrities including Dan Snow, Alastair Campbell, Adrian Chiles, Cressida Cowell and Elaine Paige.

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Visiting woods

Go exploring

Primordial landscapes, tangled branches, breathtaking wildlife and miles of woodland trails. From the countryside to cities, we care for thousands of woods throughout the UK, all free to visit.

Find a wood near you