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Braeburn Park

A former orchard, quarry and landfill site reclaimed by nature, this once neglected area is now a thriving oasis boasting several unusual species of insects.

This is an important wildlife site in Crayford, south-east London, with wide-ranging habitats including scrub and tall herbs, relict orchard, mature woodland, sandy banks, steep cliffs, and a range of chalk acidic and mosaic of neutral grassland communities. Braeburn is a haven for invertebrates, with several unusual and scarce species.

 

Species you can see at Braeburn Park

Birds: Linnet, green woodpecker, bullfinch, blackcap, lesser whitethroat, kestrel

Invertebrates: Skipping flower-beetle, picture-winged fly, ivy bee, brimstone butterfly

Plants: Pyramidal orchid, hare’s-foot clover, evening-primrose

Reptiles: Grass snakecommon lizardslow-worm

 

History of Braeburn Park

Sand and gravel extraction took place at Braeburn before the 1980s. When this industry ceased, nature took over, providing an intriguingly mixed landscape. The site also had a history of landfill, market gardening, and the Old Crayford Gun Club was once based here. The Trust has managed the site in partnership with The Land Trust since 2014, following an agreement with the developer of the neighbouring estate and Bexley Council.

 

Management of Braeburn Park

We work closely with the local community to manage Braeburn for the benefit of nature and amenity. Footpath improvements and other access works are ongoing, and with the help of volunteers selective scrub clearance works open up south-facing banks for wildlife such as basking invertebrates, reptiles, and wildflowers. Areas designated for bird breeding and other species are also enhanced. Sand banks and cliffs are being kept open to provide habitat for burrowing wasps and bees, and maintain nationally-important geological features.

 

Facilities at Braeburn Park

There are no public facilities available at the reserve.

 

How to get to Braeburn Park

The main entrance is at the end of Lower Station Road, a few minutes’ walk from Crayford Station, on a public footpath. There is another entrance following the route of the old A2 road, Rochester Way, running along the south-western edge of Braeburn. There are also entrance points along the boundary with the estate in Galloway Drive, via a grassland path, connecting with Falstaff Close, where this path adjoins a track.

 

Opening times for Braeburn Park

The reserve is not gated and is open to the public at all times.

 

Braeburn Park

 

Accessibility at Braeburn Park

Much of the reserve has uneven path surfaces and camber, with steep inclines, although wheelchair access is possible from Lower Station Road via a gate. Improvement works will be taking place to provide wheelchair access to more central areas. There are steps at two locations. Parking is available nearby, at Crayford Rail Station (£). 

 

Status of Braeburn Park

Site of Borough Importance for Nature Conservation; Metropolitan Green Belt. The reserve also contains Wansunt Pit, a geological Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) designated for the exposure of Pleistocene Dartford Heath Gravels. The Trust maintains this by periodically removing some of the vegetation from the cliff-face frontage.

 

Get involved at Braeburn Park

 

 

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Nearby nature reserves

Ruxley Gravel Pits
3 miles - Kent Wildlife Trust
The Warren
4 miles - London Wildlife Trust
Birdbrook Nature Reserve
6 miles - London Wildlife Trust

Nature reserve map

Reserve information

Location
Lower Station Road, Crayford
London
DA1 3RG
Great for...
Insect spotting
butterflies
getting away from it all
reptiles
Best time to visit
Mar - Sep
Get directions
Find out here
Public transport
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Size
22.25 hectares
Status
SAC SSSI
Dogs
Dogs must be on lead
Reserve manager
Shaun Marriott
Tel: 07710 194 268
smarriott@wildlondon.org.uk