Bemerton Folly

Bemerton Folly Local Nature Reserve

The wood is managed by Salisbury City Council and consists of 11 hectares of mixed woodland, including a network of footpaths for you to explore and enjoy the area.


Historical maps show that the area was first established as a woodland sometime in the early 1900s, nearly 50 years before the building of the first houses in what would later be known as Bemerton Heath. The housing estate continued to grow, fortunately, the woodland, known locally as ‘The Folly’ remained and was established as a Local Nature Reserve in 2003. The designation of Bemerton Heath Woodland and Barnard's Folly Woodland as Local Nature Reserves is supported by English Nature and Wiltshire Wildlife Trust.

Birds and Animals

The mixed woodland provides an excellent habitat for numerous bird species. Among common British birds, a recent survey also recorded some rarer species including Treecreepers, Spotted Flycatchers, Sparrowhawks and the Great Spotted Woodpecker. Buzzards, and less commonly Red Kites, have also been spotted circling above the wood. Pipistrelle bats, which are a protected species, have been noted to feed here, hedgehogs may be seen and grey squirrels are a common sighting.


‘The Folly’ comprises a number of species of broad-leaved trees, typical of an English woodland environment, including oak, beech, ash and sycamore with a lesser number of conifers, predominantly larch, and a diverse woodland ground flora. Bluebells and daffodils are abundant in spring and fruit plants, such as red currant, gooseberry and raspberry were found in a recent wildlife survey.

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