Friends of Hillhouse Wood

Friends of Hillhouse Wood

Bluebells at Hillhouse Wood
Hillhouse Wood is renowned for its bluebell display every spring

The Friends of Hillhouse Wood is a group of local residents who work with The Woodland Trust to look after this beautiful remnant of ancient woodland.

Every year Hillhouse Wood provides a stunning display of Bluebells, along with orchids and a variety of other woodland flowers.  It is also one of the best places in north Essex to hear the song of the Nightingale, amidst those of many other songbirds.  There are also colonies of rare butterflies.  Altogether a very special place.

What Do The Friends Do?

The Friends perform two main roles.  They:

  • organise regular work parties during the winter.  These maintain the paths, clear scrub and improve wildlife habitats;
  • run a series of wildlife walks throughout the year.  These cover such areas as mammals, fungi, moths, bats, spring flowers and birds.  All are welcome to come along. (Click links for more details and pictures).

Members of the Friends receive a newsletter three times year, containing news about the wood and the activities of the Friends.  The running of the Friends is undertaken by a committee which meets 6 times a year. Should you have any comments or queries for their consideration please email the Chairman, Andrew Savage, at [email protected] with the details.

About the Wood and Media Attention

Andrew Savage Interviewed on BBC Radio

On 12th February, Andrew Savage, Chair of the Friends of Hillhouse Wood, was interviewed on the Steve & Ian show on BBC Essex radio:

The Times in 2013

Article from the Times
Extract from The Times – 13th April 2013

Hillhouse Wood is a 10-15 minute walk from St Mary’s Old Church, Hall Road, West Bergholt, Colchester CO6 3DU (here).  It lies towards the end of the farm track that runs down the side of the old church.  In 2013 The Times published an article on “30 wild days out for Spring” including within it recommendations for wood walks.  Featured among them (with a near full-page picture) was Hillhouse Wood about which they said:

A superb springtime wood with a flood of bluebells enhanced by the light created by coppicing of hazels.  If you’re lucky, you’ll hear blackbirds and nightingales.

The Times – 13th April 2013


The Telegraph in 2015

Picture of Hillhouse Wood by Woodland Trust
One of The Telegraph’s “Top 10 spots to see bluebells in the UK”

In 2015 The Telegraph joined the growing band of media fans with the picture on the right and the following words:

Hillhouse Wood, near the village of West Bergholt in Essex, is 33 acres of ancient woodland. It has two ponds and two streams running through, and it is one of the best places in Essex to hear the nightingale. The wood is also home to a number of rare butterflies.

The Telegraph – 6th April 2015

If you would like to find out more about the Friends, and the lovely wood we help care for, please contact either Clover Savage, Membership Secretary, at [email protected] (or telephone 01206 242015, or Andrew Savage, who organises our work parties, at [email protected] (or telephone 01206 242015).

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