Size:

18.88 ha (46.65 acres)

Grid reference:

SU206835

Map reference:

Explorer 170

OS Landranger 174

Warneage Wood is a patchwork of woodland, grassland and ponds on former fields. Planted in the mid-1990s, the wood has extensive paths and is greatly enjoyed by locals.

Features

  • Parking nearby
  • Public access
  • Marshland
  • Broadleaved woodland

How to get to Warneage Wood

This 18.9-hectare (46.6-acre) site is part of the Great Western Community Forest and is located on the edge of Wanborough, a village near Swindon in Wiltshire.

From Swindon, take the A2459 east past the Great Western Hospital. On reaching the roundabout with the A419, take the second exit onto a road called Pack Hill. Follow this for 1.6km (1 mile) through the village of Wanborough then take the third road on the left called Kite Kill. After 0.6km (0.4miles) the road bends round a 90 degree right-hand turn onto Rotten Row where there are a number of entrances to the wood.

The nearest train station is located on Station Road in the centre of Swindon, approximately 8km (5 miles) from the main entrance to Warneage Wood. The main bus terminal for all routes, including those which pass Warneage Wood, is a two-minute walk from the train station.

Visit National Rail for more information.

There is a bus stop outside the most eastern entrance on Rotten Row and another at the end of Rotten Row, in the direction of the high street.

There are also bus stops on Kite Hill which are within a minute’s walk of the main entrance. A further bus stop is located outside the Cross Keys Public House on Berrycroft, to the north of Warneage Wood.

Visit Traveline for more information.

Facilities and access

There are 13 entrances to the wood comprising a combination of stiles and kissing gates. All entrances are well-linked by the excellent path and meadow network which in turn provide important and well-used links between various parts of the village of Wanborough.

There are no surfaced paths within the woodland and although the site is relatively flat, it is prone to seasonal water-logging, so paths can be uneven underfoot and muddy at times.

A small Woodland Trust parking area for up to three cars is available at the main entrance.

The nearest public toilets, which include facilities for the disabled, are approximately 5km (3 miles) from the main entrance on Dorcan Way, Covingham, Swindon. There are also toilets for patrons of the Harrow Inn on the High Street in Wanborough.

Wildlife and habitats

Animals

Warneage Wood has been designated a Site of Special Wildlife Interest (SSWI) thanks to its range of species.

On sunny days, look for ringlet, comma, and marble white butterflies fluttering among the wild flowers along the footpaths. Other invertebrates seen hovering over the pond, depending on the weather and the season, include dragonflies such as the ruddy darter, southern hawker, migrant hawker, common darter and broad-bodied chaser; and damsel flies including the large red and azure blue.

Look out for:

Trees, plants and fungi

Enjoy the varied broadleaf canopies at Warneage Wood and be sure to look out for the ancient pollarded trees, as well as the cracked goat willows which make strange shapes and play host to plenty of wildlife. You’ll also find an orchard of Wiltshire apple trees which were planted by the local community in 2014.

Look out for:

Habitats

The varied habitats at Warneage Wood have helped it earn its SSWI title. Be sure to look out for birds of prey hunting in the rough grassland as well as the invertebrates that flock to the wet woodland.

Explore:

History of Warneage Wood

Warneage Wood lies adjacent to the old Roman Road, Ermine Way. Earthworks indicate the possibility of a medieval settlement on the site. It was named by the local community to reflect local history, notably Warneage Farm which once stood on the western edge of the site.

Warneage Wood received a Biffa Award of more than £40,000 in 2014 to carry out many of the developments, including repairs to a stone barn that had fallen into disrepair. The barn is now home to new interpretation boards which tell visitors more about the history of Warneage Wood and nearby Wanborough, and is also a venue for activities such as school visits or scout meetings.

Dedication bench at Watkins Wood

Dedicate at this wood

This wood is one of more than 50 across the UK where it's possible to dedicate trees, benches or larger areas of woodland. Mark a special occasion or celebrate the life of a loved one with a meaningful gesture that lasts. 

Choose a dedication

Things to do in Warneage Wood