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Kings Wood Nature Reserve

In medieval times Rockingham Forest covered much of north-east Northamptonshire – King’s Wood is a small fragment of this once great forest. This ancient woodland was managed for centuries as Crown coppice, providing shelter for the King’s deer as well as wood for fuel. With the expansion of Corby, it became the first Local Nature Reserve (LNR) in Northamptonshire.

Traditional management of the trees by coppicing has been restored. More than 250 species of plants have been recorded including;

  • Wood anemone Anemone nemorosa,

  • Dog's mercury Mercurialis perennis,

  • Enchanter's nightshade Circaea lutetiana,

  • Yellow archangel Lamium galeobdolon and

  • Wood-sorrel Oxalis acetosella

All are characteristic of ancient woodlands.

King’s Wood is now encircled by the neighbourhoods of Danesholme, Kingswood, Beanfield and Oakley Vale, but the 32-hectare wood continues to be an important home for many plants and animals and a cherished green haven for those living nearby.

Kings Wood is owned by North Northamptonshire Council - and managed in a partnership between North Northamptonshire Council and the Wildlife Trust. The Wildlife Trust carries out conservation management work and works closely with the Friends of King’s Wood, an active volunteer group dedicated to caring for the wood.

Girl in the Woods
Walking the Dog

The wood is a fine example of an oak-ash woodland and, whilst not quite meeting the criteria for a SSSI designation, King’s Wood represents a strong addition to the compliment of existing nature reserves within the County. The site supports a rich and diverse fauna and flora, habitats and particular land use history. It also represents one of the last remaining fragments of the ancient woodland of Rockingham Forest.


King's Wood is now an important urban home for all kinds of plants and animals and is a great place for spotting wildlife! Over 250 different species of plants have been recorded at the reserve, including many that are characteristic of ancient woodlands such as wood anemone, dog’s mercury, enchanter’s-nightshade, yellow archangel and wood sorrel. Tawny owl, treecreeper and all three species of woodpecker can be found at King's Wood, as well as a wide variety of other birds, and the reserve is also a fantastic site for a large number of different invertebrates including many different types of butterflies, dragonflies/damselflies and beetles.


The Wildlife Trust is currently doing lots of exciting work at King's Wood to make it as welcoming and accessible for visitors as possible. There will be onsite improvements to signage and interpretation as well as lots of opportunities to get involved and find out more about the reserve through organised events, activities and volunteering.

To find out more about King's Wood, upcoming events and activities and about The Wildlife Trust in general please visit email or phone 01604 405285.

For further information regarding Friends of Group within the Borough click here

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