Swindon SN5 8YW
What3Words: ///found.ruffling.takers
OS map 169 Grid ref: SU105829

When to visit

Free and open to visit 24 hours a day. Best visited end of April for the bluebell display.

Know before you go

  • Not suitable for pushchairs or wheelchairs
  • Dogs on leads are welcome
  • Follow cicular walk for a short, relaxing stroll. A pond-dipping platform can be accessed from the path.
  • 2.01 hectares

Download the reserve leaflet

About the nature reserve

Hagbourne Copse reserve map © WWT

This pocket of woodland provides a breathing space for wildlife in west Swindon and a peaceful place where workers can take a lunchtime stroll. In April and May you can enjoy a stunning display of native bluebells. The copse was planted some time before 1766 and belonged to the Lydiard Park estate. Oak was harvested for the building industry and coppiced hazel was used for fencing. Coppiced trees produce new shoots and this is a traditional way of harvesting wood.

We bought it in 1999 and volunteers still coppice sections, cutting trees back to ground level so sunlight can reach the floor, encouraging woodland flowers to grow.

Join us for a virtual walk

What can be seen here?

In summer look for red campion, herb bennet, devil's-bit scabious and greater knapweed along the southern path. Also butterflies such as the purple hairstreak, peacock, brimstone, red admiral and comma. Autumn is the best time to see fungi - 22 species sprout from trunks, branches and the ground, among them common puffball. In winter you may see redwings hunting for berries and worms. Look out for great spotted woodpeckers and the occasional sparrow hawk; as well as tits and treecreepers. Rabbits, foxes, shrews and voles are present. The pond is fed by ditches, which help to drain the woodland. It attracts smooth newts, common frogs, mallard ducks and occasionally a grey heron.

How can I get here?

Download directions


Beautiful to walk round when bluebells in bloom, lovely photo opp.

~ Sarah from Swindon

Nice bluebell wood in the midst of light industry. Pleasant lunchtime stroll.

~ Gregor from Swindon

We work hard to keep special places like this a haven for wildlife and people. As a charity, we rely on your donations to allow us to continue this work. Please consider making a donation if you can, and keep Hagbourne Copse a thriving reserve for nature: