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Green places to visit in Leicestershire

We’ve highlighted some green places throughout the county for you to explore.


Fosse Meadows, Sharnford

Fosse Meadows has something for everyone. The site was once farmland owned by the Archer family and purchased by Blaby District Council in the late 1980s for the public to enjoy. There are extensive paths that lead through woodlands and flower meadows with the opportunity for bird watching. There is a wildlife lake with bird hides and a riverside walk that leads to a wildlife pond. The meadow also has a permissive bridleway around the site marked by white topped posts and a good network of public footpaths which cross the Meadows as well.

Fosse Meadows Nature Area and Arboretum

Woodland at Fosse Meadows
Woodland at Fosse Meadows | © Mat Fascione


Ulverscroft Nature Reserve

This 56-hectare nature reserve is managed by the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust and part-owned by the National Trust. The reserve is part of the ancient forest of Charnwood and is especially enchanting during the spring season when the bluebells flower. There are diverse habitats there as well with woodland, heath, wet grassland, a pond, meadow marshes and sphagnum bog. The reserve is also in part of the Ulverscroft Valley which is a site of special scientific interest (SSSI) and is described by Natural England as one of the best wildlife sites in the county.

Ulverscroft Nature Reserve


Launde Abbey / Launde Big Wood

Launde Abbey was founded as an Augustinian priory in 1119 by Richard Basset, a royal official of Henry I, but is now an Elizabethan manor house, which has been extensively modified, and is the home of the beautiful Christian Retreat House and Conference Centre.

The ancient atmosphere of Launde Big Wood will soothe you and offers a truly wild experience. There are wildflowers, singing nightingales, butterflies, and you could possibly see a badger and not forgetting the huge oak trees. The Big Wood is one of the largest semi-natural ancient woodlands in the East Midlands with superb vistas of the surrounding countryside.

Launde Woods

Bluebells in Launde Big Wood
Bluebells in Launde Big Wood | © S Parish

Hinckley and Bosworth

Billa Barra Hill Local Nature Reserve

Billa Barra Hill Local Nature Reserve is a 20-hectare nature reserve consisting of a variety of habitats including acid grasslands, as well as a number of rock outcrops of Markfieldite, making the hill a regionally important geological site. The pools in the abandoned quarry support a variety of species and the slopes of the hill below the gorse scrub line are being planted with native broadleaved trees which will be used as local provenance seed stock. The hilltop also has a natural outcrop of pre-Cambrian rocks, similar to those found at Bardon Hill and Cliffe Hill, which are nearby.

Billa Barra Hill Local Nature Reserve


Evington Park

Once a private estate with a large house built in 1836, Evington Park was opened as a public park in 1946. In springtime. rhododendron and azalea beds are a delight and the wildlife ponds and meadows attract a wide variety of wildlife which can be enjoyed throughout the summer. Wooden sculptures amongst the trees and shrubs also add interest to the park.

Evington Park

Wildlife pond at Evington Park
Wildlife pond at Evington Park | © Evan


Burrough Hill Iron Age Fort

The well-preserved Iron Age hill fort is situated in Burrough Hill Country Park and dramatically crowns a steep-sided promontory of land reaching 690 feet with amazing views. The country park also offers diverse wildlife habitats and wide-ranging areas to visit. It is also reputed to be the birthplace for Stilton cheese. Since 1970, Leicestershire County Council have leased the site from the Ernest Cook Trust.

Burrough Hill Country Park

Toposcope at the Burrough Hill Iron Age Hill Fort
Toposcope at the Burrough Hill Iron Age Hill Fort | © Mat Fascione

North West Leicester

Charnwood Lodge Nature Reserve

Note: This reserve is accessible to members of the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust only. Members should email with their membership number to gain access details.

Charnwood Lodge is the perfect reserve for both ardent naturalists and those just wanting to get away from the city for a relaxing walk. It is worth visiting during different times of the year to experience the changing seasons and species that the nature reserve attracts. There are large tracts of heath grassland which are dotted with bilberries and the marshes and boggy pools host wildflowers like marsh violet and creeping willow.

Charwood Lodge Nature Reserve

Oadby and Wigston

Brocks Hill Country Park

The park is an extremely important greenspace for wildlife in Oadby and Wigston Borough. Evidence of Bronze Age activities have also been found within the area, as have medieval shards of pottery. Brocks Hill also contains many features that were once widespread in the Leicestershire landscape, including medieval ridge and furrow fields, hay meadows, small ponds, mature trees and woodland compartments. The woodland compartments at Brocks Hill were planted between 1998 and 2001 and cover around half the area of the country park. Amongst the woods and in hedgerows there are a few magnificent mature oak and ash trees that are over a hundred years old. There are a variety of different meadows at Brocks Hill: some have been hay meadows for many years and others have been quite recently sown with wildflower seeds.

Brocks Hill Country Park

Path at Brocks Hill Country Park
Path at Brocks Hill Country Park | © Stephen McKay