Rainworth Heath | Nature Reserves | Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust
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Rainworth Heath

Rainworth Heath This reserve, just to the north of Rainworth, covers over 16 hectares and is one of the last remaining areas of heathland in Nottinghamshire which has led to its designation as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). The site offers something of interest to visitors all year round with a wide variety of birds, flowers and insects to be found. Common lizards may be seen basking in the summer, and heather is in flower in the late summer and autumn.

How to get to Rainworth Heath

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Access is via a gate on the private road leading from Rainworth village to Rufford Colliery at SK593591. If using SatNav enter NG21 0HR and follow the preceding instructions. Visitors are asked not park on the road.

Why not explore these nearby reserves? Strawberry Hill Heath & Spa Ponds.


Lowland heath was once common on the sandstone areas of Nottinghamshire, and much of Sherwood Forest used to be covered in heathland, but most of this has now been lost to agriculture and forestry. The wettest locations are characterised by peaty pools fringed with sphagnum moss and bulbous rush which occur where water emerges from the underlying rock. These areas are dominated by plants such as purple moor-grass, cross-leaved heath, common sedge and cotton grass, while well-trodden paths support heath rush.

The drier areas include species such as heather, bracken, wavy hair-grass, sheep's sorrel, and mat grass. Higher ground to the east of the site holds stands of broom and gorse, and the western edge of the reserve has developing birch woodland. The reserve is rich in invertebrates which include notable moths, hoverflies and spiders. Birds recorded include green woodpecker, tree pipit, turtle dove, woodlark, nightjar, and several species of warbler.

Conservation management aims to conserve the plants characteristic of lowland heath including the re-establishment of heather, control of bracken and scrub, and grazing. For much of the year, the site is home to a number of Hebridean sheep from the Trust’s flying flock.

For some pictures of the reserve please go to our flickr set
http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/sets/72157631156210264/

Membership helps us maintain the site for the benefit of both people and wildlife.
Donations are also vital to help support our reserves, so please consider making a one off donation by texting NWTR01 £10 to 70070. [Feel free to vary the cash figure after the £sign.]




The site is open to the public and there is limited wheelchair access, but no stiles. Visitors are asked to stay on the paths and not to go into the grazing areas. Dogs are welcome provided they are kept on a lead.

Opening times

The reserve is open at all times.


Events at Rainworth Heath

News from Rainworth Heath

First Time Marathon Runner Attempts Robin Hood Marathon for Sherwood Wildlife

Monday 15th February 2016

Grace Clark, a City Council worker at Glenbrook Management Centre, has taken up the challenge of running the full Nottingham Robin Hood Marathon to fundraise for Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust’s campaign ‘Champions of Sherwood’.

Find out more



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