Nature Reserves

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Pissen Wood, OxfordshireStreet MapGoogle MapPhotos

Pissen Wood
Managed by:Private land owner
OS grid reference:SU 718 837
Nearest postcode:RG9 4RE
Usual work:Coppicing

Pissen wood is a privately owned area of semi-ancient woodland which has traditionally been coppiced. The woodland is especially beautiful when the woodland floor is covered with bluebells.

Flora and Fauna

The woodland at the site consists of many species of native deciduous trees, including ash, oak, hazel, elder, beech, elm, and sweet chestnut. There is a hedge along the northern boundary of the site that provides shelter for woodland fauna. Bluebells, muntjac deer, and fallow deer are also present at the site.

Conservation Management

Coppiced hazel with guards to deter browsing deer

Most of the conservation carried out at the site is coppicing. Its purpose is to ensure the continued rejuvenation of the woodland using traditional techniques that have been used for hundreds of years. Coppicing allows light to reach the woodland floor and prolongs the life of the trees. Due to the presence of deer at the site, extra care has to be made to protect the coppiced stools with brash from the tops of the trees. This stops the deer from browsing the new shoots. There are also hedges at the site that could be laid in order to provide good habitat for a wide variety of woodland species, and to enable light to reach a lower level of the woodland floor.


Note that since Pissen Wood is privately owned, the only way to see it is to come to an OCV task at the site. Given the limited parking, it is also advised to come in the OCV minibus.

Leave the Oxford ring road at the Heyfordian roundabout and take the A4074 south to Reading and Wallingford. Stay on the A4074 to Reading/Henley until you see the sign for Henley and Nettlebed using the A4130, which is the second turn off the Crowmarsh roundabout. Remain on the A4130 until just after Nettlebed where you'll see the National Trust sign to Greys Court. Take the second exit from this roundabout to join the B481 to Greys Court. Just past Highmoor Cross, about 1.9 miles from the roundabout leaving Nettlebed, turn right onto Rocky Lane. Stay on Rocky lane as it bends to the right. The site is on the left of the single-track road.

As you come down the hill heading south you will see a track on your left. The OCV minibus can pull into the track and park there.