Size:

24.72 ha (61.08 acres)

Grid reference:

TQ481224

Map reference:

Explorer 135

OS Landranger 198

Views Wood is a large, ancient wood on the northern edge of the Low Weald. It sits between the town of Uckfield and the Buxted Park Estate, to which it originally belonged. It is one of the remaining fragments of the vast medieval forest of Andredsweald that once stretched across West Sussex to Kent.

The 24-hectare (60-acre) wood is a tranquil haven for humans and wildlife alike. It has great displays of spring flowers, plenty of historical interest and a range of walks to suit all abilities.

Features

  • Public access
  • Spring flowers
  • Waymarked walk
  • Broadleaved woodland

How to get to Views Wood

Views Wood is a large, ancient wood on the northern edge of the Low Weald. It sits between the town of Uckfield and the Buxted Park Estate, to which it originally belonged. It is one of the remaining fragments of the vast medieval forest of Andredsweald that once stretched across West Sussex to Kent.

The 24-hectare (60-acre) wood is a tranquil haven for humans and wildlife alike. It has great displays of spring flowers, plenty of historical interest and a range of walks to suit all abilities.

From Uckfield, take the B2102 (High Street) northwards and continue for 1.6km (1 mile). Turn right onto Browns Lane and then take the first left onto Nevill Road.

The nearest train station is Uckfield, 1.6km (1 mile) from the wood.

Visit National Rail for more information.

The nearest bus stop is on Nevill Road, 200 metres (220 yards) from the wood.

Visit Traveline for more information.

Facilities and access

Views Wood is located next to the Manor Park housing estate on the edge of Uckfield. There are five entrances from Manor Park (kissing gates/squeeze gaps) and two from Buxted Park (kissing gate/footbridge).

Approximately 600 metres (650 yards) of path from the main entrance and from the public footpath entrance at Manor Park are surfaced. There is an extensive network of rides and smaller paths throughout the wood, with narrow footbridges crossing streams.

Visitors with prams or wheelchairs can enjoy the wood by following the surfaced paths. Special gates at the entrances make it easy to start your walk, and once you are inside the wood there are no gates or stiles. When you’re ready to leave the wood you can return along the same path.

There is no car park at the wood. Cars may be parked on the roads in Manor Park, taking care not to block entrances into the wood or driveways.

The nearest public toilets are 1.6km (1 mile) from Views Wood at Uckfield Civic Centre, Civic Approach, where there are disabled toilets and baby changing facilities.

Wildlife and habitats

Animals

Views Wood is home to a variety of mammals, including badger, dormouse and fallow deer. There is also abundant bird life, such as blue tit, chiffchaff, wren and cuckoo. Also keep an eye out for the many insects found here, including bees and butterflies.

Look out for:

Trees, plants and fungi

Views Wood has been a working wood for most of its recorded history and coppiced woodland for centuries. The wood provided timber for various uses – primarily ash, hornbeam and oak for charcoal production for the iron industry; hazel for baskets, hurdles, wattles and pea sticks; and sweet chestnut for poles for the Sussex hop industry.

Look out for:

Habitats

The semi-natural woodland at Views Wood provides a valuable habitat for local wildlife.

Explore:

Most of Views Wood remained as part of the Buxted Estate until 1979 when it was sold to a private buyer.

In 1986, we bought the southern part of the wood. The purchase was funded by a generous donation from Mr. Hugh Williams, to whom the wood is dedicated.

About Views Wood

History

Early history

Pottery fragments, burnt flint and the remains of a corn-drying kiln just to the edge of Views Wood suggest that there was a settlement on the site in Roman times. It is probable that coppicing (cutting back trees to promote growth) was introduced at this time.

Industry

Iron production in the Weald dates back to pre-Roman times. Views Wood would probably have provided the timber for charcoal used in the smelting process.

Views Wood was coppiced to provide poles for various uses while the oak standards provided timber for construction. From the 18th century onwards, hops for the brewing industry were grown in the area and the wood was converted into sweet chestnut coppice to provide the many durable poles used in early hop growing.

Farming and game

A holloway (sunken lane) is marked on a 1790 map and is aligned on a modern map with a ridgeway linking High Hurstwood to Uckfield. This track is probably a droveway, used in early medieval times to drive pigs through the wood where they were brought to forage in spring and summer. In the 19th century, the wood was used for rearing pheasants for shoots at Buxted Park and the 1881 census shows a gamekeeper living in Views Wood.

Views Wood (The Williams Wood) - Management plan

Download

Views Wood (The Williams Wood) Management Plan

PDF  (129 KB)