In the light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, we want to let you know about the measures we are taking and how these may affect you when visiting and contacting Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust.


19th July 2021

COVID Update

Whilst all legal restrictions relating to social distancing, gatherings and measures such as wearing of masks have been lifted, the safety of our staff, volunteers, visitors and customers remains of the utmost importance to us. We would therefore ask that you don’t visit our premises if you think you may have Covid symptoms; consider wearing a face covering to protect others in crowded spaces and continue to wash your hands or sanitise frequently – in line with Government guidelines on keeping ourselves and others safe.

If on visiting our reserves you find that there are more other visitors that you are comfortable with, please consider coming back at a quieter time or trying of our dozens of reserves across the county.

Our light and airy cafes at both Attenborough & Idle Valley are open 7 days a week with both indoor & outdoor seating options. Indoor seating currently remains more widely spaced than our previous café layouts.

Wildlife viewing hides

Attenborough - The Tower Hide & Kingfisher Hides at Attenborough will be reopened from Tuesday 20th July. The  Sand Martin Hide remains closed at the moment due to bird nesting activity in the garden area behind the Nature Centre as an interesting and unexpected consequence of visitors not being able to access the garden in recent months. The hide will be reopened as soon as can clear the garden once nesting is over.

Besthorpe – The Gwen Butcher Hide will be reopened later this week.


21st June 2021

Nature Reserves

All of our nature reserves remain open as they have done throughout all the lockdowns, however the hides remain closed whilst social distancing is still recommended.

However, the cafes, shops and toilets at both Attenborough Nature Centre and Idle Valley Nature Reserve Visitor Centre are open and we are now starting to deliver some events and activities so keep checking for updates on our events pages

Our Engagement Team at Attenborough Nature Centre is now taking bookings from schools and other groups including birthday parties, so please contact them to discuss your requirements via the contact form.


5th January 2021

Nature Reserves

All our nature reserves will remain open during this lockdown to provide opportunities for exercise and a vital connection with nature. We are urging people to stay local and make the most of the green spaces close to home.

The cafe's at Attenborough and Idle Valley will remain open for takeaway, opening times will not change. If you enjoy using our nature reserves please consider supporting our work by making a donation or becoming a member (you can do this for half price at the moment). Measures necessary to keep people safe have reduced our charitable income. We need your support now more than ever.

Stay safe

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30th October 2020

Attenborough Nature Reserve

The good news is that Attenborough Nature Centre will remain open to welcome visitors! Friday 30th October these new rules apply:

  • Due to local restrictions relating to hospitality venues having to serve substantial meals for customers sitting in we will be moving to a TAKEAWAY ONLY menu whilst we remain in Tier  3.
  • You can only enter the café/shop with members of your household or support bubble
  • Due to the impact on staffing and income, and the need to ensure social distancing this sadly means that we will have to close the toilets whilst we’re in Tier 3. 

Please bear in mind that these aren't our rules and the team have worked tirelessly since we’ve reopened, jumping through hurdle after hurdle to keep the doors open.

So far we’ve kept things going thanks to your amazing support. In order for us to remain open now we need you to keep visiting us to enjoy takeaway drinks and snacks and to make purchases in our shop.

If you aren’t able to visit at the moment don’t forget you can support us via our online shop, making a donation or becoming a member of Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust.

The nature reserve remains open, as it has throughout lockdown and various restrictions and our other reserves remain open too. Please follow the rule of 6 when visiting and keep a safe distance but do enjoy connecting with nature this autumn.


19th October 2020

Nature Reserves

We’re delighted to confirm that as of this morning the car park at Idle Valley Nature Reserve off North Road is once again open to visitors. We’d like to thank visitors and supporters for their patience in this matter and for their forbearance as we focus on getting the centre facilities reopened to visitors in the weeks ahead.

Our team are working extremely hard at Idle Valley and across the north of the county to keep our reserves in good order and working with partners on a range of exciting initiatives which are delivering real gains for wildlife from the heart of Sherwood Forest to wider Idle Valley. This is all being achieved whilst dealing with the challenges of working during a pandemic and ensuring that we keep team members, volunteers and visitors safe. This work wouldn’t be possible without our members and supporters – Thank you.


15th May 2020

Nature Reserves

Our cafe at Attenborough Nature Reserve is now offering a takeaway service and limited seating in the cafe. This includes hot and cold drinks, sandwiches, artisan ice creams, hot cobs and pies along with fresh local breads and cakes. All our other facilities remain closed apart from toilets for the sit in cafe customers only whilst the main toilets are being refurbished. 

Whilst many parks and greenspaces have been closed during lockdown, our nature reserves across the county have remained accessible, providing essential opportunities for exercise and vital connection with nature for people across Nottinghamshire at a uniquely challenging time.

We are part of the natural world, not separate to it, and the past couple of months have underlined just how essential access to nature and greenspaces is for our wellbeing.

Now that the Government has announced that we can all take unlimited exercise and travel more freely we have reviewed our decision to close the car parks at Attenborough and Idle Valley. Whilst recognising that guidance has changed we are still cautious of encouraging large number of people to travel to our sites so, for now, our advice remains for people to stay local and to enjoy our reserves on foot or to travel by bicycle.

However, given the huge number of visitors Attenborough receives we have decided that from today (15th May) we will reopen the car park from 9am-8pm in order to prevent traffic and parking issues for our neighbours in Attenborough Village and along Barton Lane. We have also installed a range of new signage advising people to maintain social distancing, avoid gathering on narrow paths and to keep a look out for any wildlife that may have chosen to nest near paths whilst visitor numbers have been reduced.

For now, the car park at Idle Valley remains closed though we will keep the levels of demand under review and open discussions with our partner, North Notts College, about how and when we can reopen safely and will post any new updates here and on our social media pages.

Over the next few weeks as more and more people choose to travel to visit sites we will face a considerable challenge in terms of checking paths are accessible and looking for birds or other wildlife that may have moved into unusual areas whilst the reserves have been quieter. Thank you in advance for your support and understanding as our team get on top of this work.


Events and planned activities are mostly cancelled with a few digital talks planned and socially distanced and risk assessed opportunities being posted on our website and social media. We are monitoring public health information and will continue to post updates on our website and social media channels.


All volunteering activities, including corporate workdays, have been paused but in light of the new guidance we are currently reviewing how we can restart elements of the volunteering programme safely with some sessions with limited numbers of volunteers starting up.

Getting in touch

If you need to get in touch, visit our contact form or message us via our Facebook page. At this busy time we may take longer to reply to your enquiries, so your patience is appreciated.


Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust would not be able to carry out the important work we do for people and nature without our supporters and we thank you all for your continued support during these difficult times. We encourage you to stay in touch via our social media channels Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Support us

As is the case for most charities, we expect the continuing situation to have a significant impact on our finances. We also understand that during this turbulent period, many of you will be unable to make a donation.

If you are able to spare any amount, however large or small, to help Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust continue to work hard for wildlife it would be so appreciated. In advance, thank you, from all of us, and on behalf of our county’s wildlife. 


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