Penn Wood (Woodland Trust)
Reserve Name Penn Wood
Managing Authority Woodland Trust
The village of Penn Street in Buckinghamshire is a short distance south of the A404 which runs from Amersham to Hazlemere (near High Wycombe). In the centre of the village is a quintessential village green with a pub and a cricket pitch and houses on one side of it. The other sides are bordered by Penn Wood.
There is a largish, tree-surrounded car park there, accessed via a track across the edge of the green – look out for the War Memorial and you are then close to the track.
Parking & Toilet Provision
Car Parking is easy along the edges of the village green or close to the very attractive church and extensive churchyard, which are tucked away in the edge of the wood and slightly separated from the main part of the village. There is a largish, tree-surrounded car park there, accessed via a track across the edge of the green. The ground in the car park is hard-standing and flat.
Description of Habitat & Facilities
Penn Wood is an “Ancient Forest”, which means that it is known to have been there since AD 1600 or even earlier. It is owned and actively managed by The Woodland Trust. They are ensuring that native broad leaf trees are encouraged.
Close to the entrance to the churchyard is an entrance to the wood. There is a notice board giving a schematic plan of the wood, marking paths etc. and giving details of the fauna to be seen – deer, squirrels and woodpeckers, tree-creepers, nuthatches and kestrels and doubtless the list is not exhaustive. Also there is the wheelchair sign for disabled access. This is not the only way in as we discovered when we left the wood in an entirely different place.
The wood is incredibly beautiful and, although my wife and I by no means explored all of it – evening was approaching and the light of the late afternoon sun streaming through the beeches was enchanting – I expect the same standard of access will prevail throughout. It is the kind of place that will be lovely in any season but particularly in spring and autumn and we will be going back there again.
Description of Trails
In the wood there are a variety of paths, some of which would be impossible for anyone who is a wheelchair user but there is a comprehensive network of flat, hard paths, obviously viable in any weather (save perhaps a blizzard!). The narrowest flat, hard path I saw was about a metre wide and others were as wide as a minor road. Gates are designed with extended levers so that they can easily be opened and closed from a sitting position.
Number of Hides
Description of Hides [By name or number]