Size:

1.85 ha (4.57 acres)

Grid reference:

SJ556812

Map reference:

Explorer 275

OS Landranger 108

Railway Plantation is a little slice of nature in an urban setting. In spring, you’ll find an abundance of vivid bluebell, speckled with the white of wild garlic and wood anemone. In autumn, the mix of sycamore, oak, alder and horse chestnut produces a wonderful array of gold, russet and red; while the seasonal ponds attract more wildlife.

Features

  • Parking nearby
  • Public access
  • Broadleaved woodland

How to get to Railway Plantation

A part of the Mersey Forest, this 1.9-hectare (4.6-acre) site is located on the Murdishaw Estate in east Runcorn.

It sits between Barnfield Avenue and the railway line and is around 280 metres long and 90 metres across at its widest point.

From the M56, exit on junction 11 and follow the signs for Preston Brook then Runcorn/Widnes. You will come to an access roundabout at the 02 offices and then a small refuge island. Continue straight ahead (crossing over the motorway) until you come to a large roundabout.

Take the second exit off the roundabout onto Murdishaw Avenue. About 400 metres along there is a small roundabout. Take the first exit onto Barnfield Avenue to the Busway lights, passing Halton Haven on your left.

Carry on until you see the Runcorn East Station. Railway Plantation is located next to the station.

Railway Plantation is located next to Runcorn East Station on Barnfield Avenue.

Visit National Rail for more information.

There is a bus stop on Barnfield Avenue, and buses run from Runcorn Bus Station.

Visit Traveline for more information.

Facilities and access

The main entrance is from the car park off Barnfield Avenue. There is a good network of surfaced pathways through the site, with some steps and bridges. Paths may become muddy in places.

There is a car park near the wood, at the train station just off Barnfield Avenue. There is space for 50 cars.

The nearest public toilets are opposite the Murdishaw Community Centre, Barnfield Avenue, WA7 6EP. They are open Monday-Thursday, 9am-9pm.

Wildlife and habitats

Animals

This pretty patch of woodland in an urban area provides a haven for local wildlife. A 1999 survey identifies 65 species of invertebrates in the wood and surrounding area and it’s a good place to spot birds like the grey wagtail and great spotted woodpecker.

Look out for:

Trees, plants and fungi

The broadleaved woodland at Railway Plantation is surprisingly varied though dominated by sycamore and oak. Bluebell and wild garlic are particularly abundant in this vibrant wood.

It also has a dense understorey consisting mainly of elder, hawthorn, rowan, wild cherry, hazel and holly. In fact, a survey carried out in 1999 identified 73 flowering plants.

Look out for:

Habitats

As its name suggests, Railway Plantation is a plantation. Located in an urban area, it provides a much-needed habitat for wildlife.

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About Railway Plantation

History

The Warrington and Runcorn Development Corporation managed the plantation through the 1980s and early 1990s, before it was donated to us in December 1995.

Things to do in Railway Plantation

Railway Plantation - Management plan

Download

Railway Plantation Management Plan

PDF  (122 KB)