February 2021

I think it was during the first pandemic lockdown last March, that I came across Greendown Copse in Grange Park. Limited by lockdown to my neighbourhood I took to wandering around hitherto unexplored parts of my neighbourhood. And that’s how I came upon this delightful little treasure tucked away amidst 1980s suburbia.

Greendown Copse in Grange Park - signage looking worn down and weather worn

I knew, from signs left in the copse, that a community group looked after it. But beyond that – nothing. Roger Ogle connected me with someone in the group so what follows came from that source.

Lot No 2

With the proximity of the copse to Lydiard Park, it’s no surprise to learn that the copse, like the housing that surrounds it, once formed part of the Lydiard estate. In 1943 this patch of land went to auction as Lot 2 (they think) as part of the sale of the Lydiard Park estates – including the park itself.

Related topic: The Great Forest of Braydon:

Diversity and biodiversity

The group managing the copse tell me that they found native English bluebells in the copse, hidden in the undergrowth. This matters because our native bluebell is losing ground to the Spanish variety introduced by the Victorians as a garden plant. They’ve also removed some of the non-native, invasive garden plants that probably landed in the copse via garden waste. In particular the variegated archangel has got a hold and is proving a challenge.

The volunteer group – open to any interested residents – began working with the borough in 2014 and are now working with the Parish council.

The photos below are from the group that take such wonderful care of the copse. Big thanks to them for supplying the information for this blog and the photographs.

Path through Greendown Copse

Greendown Copse Bird Observations

greendown copse bird observations

Greendown Copse, hedgerow and walk are part of the Community Asset designation linked with Lydiard Park. This ran out last September and the community is still awaiting confirmation of its renewal.