Inkpen Common

Peter Creed

Inkpen Common

A remnant of ancient heathland, a flower-filled wilderness fringed with woodland that rings with birdsong.

Location

6 miles south-west of Newbury
Berkshire
RG17 9QT

OS Map Reference

SU382643
A static map of Inkpen Common

Know before you go

Size
12 hectares

Entry fee

No

Parking information

3/4 mile east of Inkpen village at junction of Great Common Road and Heads Lane. Park on surfaced track opposite reserve; please take care not to obstruct access.

Grazing animals

Yes

Access

Flat ground, mostly firm with some wetter areas; kissing gates

Dogs

On a lead

When to visit

Opening times

Open at all times

Best time to visit

March to November

About the reserve

Inkpen Great Common

Lying south-west of Newbury, this rare Berkshire heathland was once part of the old Inkpen Great Common where villagers had rights to graze livestock and collect firewood and gorse for feeding their ovens.

An interesting mix

Today's nature reserve is split into two parts. The smaller south-western portion is now a small woodland of naturally regenerated oak and birch. The larger eastern part includes areas of heather and gorse, fringed by silver birch and oak, a small valley bog and a pond. Some parts can get very wet in winter.

Heathland gems

A variety of heathland plants can be seen here including gorse, dwarf gorse, three types of heather, the scarce pale dog-violet, lousewort and heath milkwort. Look out for the unusual parasitic common dodder - it has no leaves, only pink thread-like stems and dense heads of white and pink flowers. From the boardwalk next to the bog you can admire yellow bog asphodel. Meadow thistle and heath spotted-orchid grow here too. Woodland trees and birds In late spring and summer, look and listen for warblers serenading you from the woodland fringes.

Things to do

Explore the reserve and surrounding area with our Inkpen Wild Walk. Starting in Kintbury, this 17km circular walk takes in Inkpen Common and Inkpen Crocus Field nature reserves. There is a shorter 10km route that starts at Inkpen Common. OS Explorer Map 158, 1:25,000 scale, covers the route of this walk. 

Contact us

Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust (BBOWT)
Contact number: 01628 829574
Contact email: info@bbowt.org.uk

Environmental designation

Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)