Hardings Wood comprises almost 6 hectares of mixed woodland on the outskirts of Wigginton Village, within a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). The Hertfordshire Biological Records Centre lists Hardings Wood in the Ancient Woodland Inventory and as a designated Archaeological Alert Site. The wood is also categorised as a Wildlife Site.
The older part of Hardings Wood has probably been wooded since the last ice age. It used to be part of a much larger area of woodland and its distinctive shape can be made out on a map of 1766. It appears as a separate entity on an 1822 map. This ancient woodland supports a wide diversity of plant and animal species. Historic features include a saw pit, several marl pits, part of Grim’s Dyke, ancient coppiced hornbeam boundary trees and remains of 19th-century clay-pipe drainage.
Warm thanks to Gill Pakenham for allowing us to use her bird photographs and to Steve Povey for the mammals. Other photographs by Francesca Greenoak and others.
From Wigginton: Along the Chesham Road, turn left after the traffic-calming chicane, continue down past the crossroads until you reach the wood entrance in Crawleys Lane.
Click here for a map
The Hardings Wood Trust is registered as a Charitable Trust (Registered Charity number 1096325)
Please be aware that Hardings Wood is an ancient wood and that some of the paths are steep. Visitors are advised to have suitable clothing and footwear, and to be aware of all natural hazards—slip, trip, low hanging branches, projecting roots, insects, for example. Take care and enjoy your visit.