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Nunnery Wood

“A society grows great when old men plant trees in whose shade they shall never sit.” - Greek Proverb


Nunnery Wood, which forms the Woodland Trail at Worcester Woods Country Park, is an ancient semi-natural (meaning it has been shaped by human activity) woodland from the Middle Ages.

Nunnery Wood features an enormous veteran Oak tree that is around 550 years old, a living connection to our past and a tree that will likely outlive us. The UK has more ancient native oak trees than all other EU countries combined and each oak tree supports more life than any other UK native tree - up to 2,300 species!

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Closer to the ground you will find even more thriving habitats. When we think of woodland, we often focus on the trees but a healthy, biodiverse woodland with a stable ecosystem depends upon a thriving understory, field and ground layer with shrubs, grasses, mosses and lichen. Elsewhere in Nunnery Wood, the woodland pond was formed by an old Marl pit dug up during the Medieval period and now helps support more species than any other freshwater habitat.


Britain has lost almost half its ancient woodland since the 1930s, leaving just 2.5% of the UK land covered in ancient woodland. Ancient woodlands, and veteran trees, are unique and irreplaceable ecosystems, home to many rare species of plants, fungi, insects and other fauna. It is important that we conserve our ancient woodlands and protect, and even grow, future veteran trees to ensure a biodiverse future in the UK.

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