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Wildlife and nature

wood anamone at spring park

Wood anemone at Spring Park

As a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINC), the woodland at Spring Park is recognised as an area with a high value for nature conservation.

The ancient woodland, carpeted with bluebells, wood anemone and yellow archangel, is dominated by a canopy of oak and chestnut. Look a little closer and you’ll discover pockets of wetter ground where seasonal springs allow alder and sallow to thrive along with sturdy regiments of rushes and sedges.

Dense hazel copse provides secretive nest sites for woodland birds whilst an abundance of deadwood, provided by decades of winter storms, have become a diverse habitat for fungi, mosses, lichens and insects, including the mighty stag beetle.

Arguably the woodland’s most notable feature is its population of small-leaved lime trees which is said to be the largest assemblage of these majestic trees in Greater London.

Meadow at Spring Park

Meadow at Spring Park

Beautiful scenery across the meadow

In contrast to the woodland, you can enjoy open views across the meadows where butterflies such as meadow browns and ringlets can be seen amongst the grasses and flowers during the summer months.

Taking a stroll just before dark, where the meadow borders the woodland, may be rewarded by a sighting of a Serotine bat, which is one of Britain’s largest bats. Listen out for the hoots of Tawny owls as you wonder along.

Azure damselflies

​Azure damselflies, Fred O'Hare​

Bordering the meadows are impressive hedgerows, managed to maximise their benefits for wildlife. The roadside hedge has been ‘laid’, a traditional technique that revitalises the hedge plants and provides dense nesting sites for birds. Younger hedges, stretching across the meadows, have been planted with a good range of native tree and shrub species to provide plenty of nectar-rich flowers and sugar-rich berries for hungry insects, birds and small mammals.  

A dip in the pond

No visit to Spring Park would be complete without dropping into see the pond. This diverse aquatic habitat is of interest all year round but at its best in the spring. Over 20 plant species can be found in the margins, whilst frogs, toads and newts fill the open water areas with their young. Dragonflies and damselflies complete the picture with their delicate aerial acrobatics.

13 March 2012
Last Modified:
20 May 2019