Wildlife Conservation Group in the

Forest of Dean


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10 November and 27 October 2016

May Hill - National Trust

Grid Ref SO690221


A return to May Hill where we were continuing to re-create the Woodland Pasture.

The top of May Hill (grid reference SO695214) is a 32.6-hectare (81-acre) biological and geological Site of Special Scientific Interest in Gloucestershire, notified in 1954. The site is listed in the Forest of Dean Local Plan Review as a Key Wildlife Site (KWS).

Much of the Hill is wooded, both coniferous and deciduous, though the summit area is grassland and heath, with a small amount of heather and gorse. The immediate summit is topped with mature Corsican pines, which were planted in 1887 to mark Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee and one very old Scots Pine which is a generation older, but which regrettably suffered badly in an ice storm in early 2012.



10 November 2016



Luckily, we had a bright day with only a couple of showers and continued to clear some more birch and the old piles of brush.

There are Oak Ferns on May hill

This lovely little bright green fern is divided into three parts, the leaf bending horizontally back on top of the dark, shiny, brittle stalk. Oak fern forms colonies in moist shady woodland, and also grows among rocks on hills. Most common in the north and west of the British Isles.


27 October 2016



Throughout the wood there are many rides which separate it into open spaces. Originally, the wood was planted with Sweet Chestnut trees mainly but there are now many closely packed self generated trees competing for space.


27 October 2016



We made progress through the coppice.

Birds to be seen on the hill include meadow pipit, tree pipit, redstart and raven, whilst the woods below have a good population of woodcock.