Finemere Wood

Please note: HS2 Ltd have ongoing works surrounding this reserve, including regular road closures along Edgcott Road. We are doing everything we can to limit the impact of HS2's work on visitors to our site. If you have questions, please contact the HS2 helpdesk team on 08081 434 434 or email 

A magnificent woodland - home to birds, bats and butterflies, where you can forget the stresses of everyday life.


8 miles north-west of Aylesbury,
near Quainton
HP22 4DE

OS Map Reference

SP 721 215
A static map of Finemere Wood

Know before you go

77 hectares

Entry fee


Parking information

2 miles east of Edgcott on unclassified rd towards Quainton, 100m east of pylons crossing rd there is track on left. Park on hard verge, walk down track to reserve.

Grazing animals


Walking trails

1.5 mile Wildlife Walk through reserve plus other permissive paths.


Flat, muddy when when wet, some stumps and roots; five short bridges; benches throughout reserve.


On a lead

When to visit

Opening times

Open at all times

Best time to visit

All year round

About the reserve

Woodland flowers

Throughout the year, Finemere Wood has the thrilling atmosphere of a very old, wild place. Spring is particularly special when the rides are edged with primroses, and bluebells carpet the woodland floor. If you look closely, you can find wood spurge, wood anemone, early-purple orchid or greater butterfly-orchid. In the sunnier coppiced areas, lesser celandine and dog's mercury appear early, and in the summer, hairy St. John's-wort and willowherb take advantage of the clearings. An impressive 200 species of flowers have been recorded here.

Historic meadow

At the heart of the wood you will find a sheltered haven of rough pasture and thickets. Traditional grazing has encouraged the return of plants such as ragged-robin and cuckooflower in the spring and saw-wort, betony and devil's-bit scabious in the summer. In the autumn, the low sun highlights the seed heads of grasses like wood small-reed and tufted hair-grass. A good variety of bees buzz around the meadows throughout the summer. Butterflies abound This nature reserve is one of the best places to spot the magnificent purple emperor. Head for the main ride in July and August. Its smaller cousin, the white admiral, thrives here as well, particularly around trailing honeysuckle leaves. A warm summer may bring an influx of silver-washed fritillaries that hunt out patches of violets for their caterpillars to feed on.

Regal history

Finemere was once used by kings and queens for hunting wild boar. Along with Rushbeds Wood and Whitecross Green nature reserves, also in Buckinghamshire, it was a part of the ancient Royal Forest of Bernwood. BBOWT is currently reviving this ancient landscape in a three-year conservation project.

Things to do

Try our circular Wildlife Walk (1.5 miles). Just follow the badger waymarkers.
Look out for our seasonal guided walks.

Your Finemere Wood photographs

Share your photographs of Finemere Wood with us! Just add them to our BBOWT flickr group, and tag them with 'finemerewood'.

Contact us

Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust (BBOWT)
Contact number: 01442 826774
Contact email:

Environmental designation

Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)

Ramblings from Finemere Wood

Read volunteer warden, Charlotte Karmali's blogs about the volunteer group at Finemere Wood

Read the blogs
Get involved

Volunteer with us

Our volunteers help us in so many ways - by working on nature reserves, helping at visitor centres, leading walks, training others and much, much more. Without our volunteers we would not be able to carry out much of our work.

For more information about volunteering for BBOWT, please get in touch with