Norfolk Tourist Information
Norfolk Tourist Information
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    Norfolk Tourist Information / Nature & Wildlife

    Foxley Wood
    Foxley Wood is the largest remaining block of ancient woodland in Norfolk.

    Owned by Norfolk Wildlife Trust, it was awarded National Nature Reserve status in May 2002.

    This prestigious award put the wood in the top tier of nature reserves nationally.

    It is thought to be about 6,000 years old and was mentioned in the Domesday Book.

    In times past the wood was an important economic resource for local people, provided an important source of high quality poles, fuel, timber, grazing and bark for use in the tanning industry.

    This regular harvesting kept the wood in tip-top condition and prevented it from becoming overgrown.

    Neglected for years

    Sadly in the 20th century demand for these traditional woodland products waned and so the wood fell into neglect. In the 1960s many of the ancient oaks were felled and large areas of the wood were planted with conifers.

    Norfolk Wildlife Trust purchased Foxley Wood in 1988 and began the long, slow process of revitalising the wood by reintroducing the techniques which local people used to manage it in times past.

    The most important practice used is coppicing, cutting trees close to ground level to encourage new shoots to spring up around the stump. NWT coppices much of the wood on a seven-year rotation.

    Trees on view

    The coppice at NWT Foxley Wood is mainly hazel and ash with some field maple, sallow, and small-leaved lime.

    Also scattered around the wood are larger trees know as 'standards’, mainly oak and ash which have been left to mature.

    There are several uncommon wild service trees here. An important and clearly visible feature of NWT Foxley Wood are the wide ‘rides’ which cut through the trees.

    These were created centuries ago to facilitate the removal of timber from the wood, and now support important woodland grasses such as St John’s Wort, stitchwort and bugle.

    Foxley Wood is open all year round from 10am to 5pm, but is closed on Thursdays. Entrance is free.

    Information leaflets are available from a stand near the car park to facilitate your visit.

    Contact Details
    AddressFoxley Wood

    On the Foxley to Themelthorpe road 12 miles northwest of Norwich on the A1067
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