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Bramley Bank

Restored woodland and heathland which typifies London’s semi-natural habitats, providing a home for stag beetles and woodpeckers.

Nestled between Addington Hills and Littleheath Wood is this enchanting oak woodland, with supporting relic heathland and acid grassland communities.

Trees here include birch, oak and ash, with springtime displays of bluebell and dog violet. Bramley Bank also boasts the largest woodland pond in Croydon, which is of special wildlife value. The acid grassland clearing supports a range of bird, butterfly and flower species.


Species you can see at Bramley Bank

Birds: Nuthatch, song thrush, lesser spotted woodpecker, green woodpecker, tawny owl

Invertebrates: Purple hairstreak butterfly, stag beetle, yellow meadow ant

Mammals: Pipistrelle bat

Plants: Sheeps-fescue, common dog violet, enchanter's-nightshade, heather, English bluebell, heath bedstraw


History of Bramley Bank

The woodland here now has grown after the 1930s, but species indicative of ancient woodland are present. The boundary of Bramley Bank remains the same as it did in 1890. The area was then more like open parkland and formed part of the Heathfield Estate, owned by the Riesco family. Many of the Austrian pines, sweet chestnut and beech trees had by then been planted and the pond dug. 


Management of Bramley Bank

We are cutting and clearing invading scrub to protect the lowland heath and acid grassland, in addition to undertaking more selective heathland restoration works by harvesting heather brash and seeds from neighbouring heathland sites for sowing on our reserve. Remnant cherry laurel characteristic of the site’s historic associations is cleared, along with sycamore encroachment from the woodland understory. 


Facilities at Bramley Bank

There are no public facilities available at the reserve.


How to get to Bramley Bank

Bramley Bank is located in the borough of Croydon, in the Addington Hills. There are two entrances, one off Riesco Drive and one in Broadcoombe. Tramlink services stop at Coombe Lane, a five-minute walk from the entrance at Riesco Drive. Bus service 466 also travels along Coombe Lane.


Opening times for Bramley Bank

The reserve is open at all times. A public right of way, the London Outer Orbital Path, runs through the reserve.

Bramley Bank



Accessibility at Bramley Bank

The paths are generally level with shallow inclines, but the entrances can be muddy and uneven, particularly near the pond and the Broadcoombe entrance. There is a narrow kissing gate at Riesco Drive which is unsuitable for wheelchairs. There is street parking available in Broadcoombe.


Status of Bramley Bank

Site of Borough Importance for Nature Conservation; Local Nature Reserve; Metropolitan Green Belt


Get involved at Bramley Bank 


Nearby nature reserves

Hutchinson's Bank, Chapel Bank & Threecorner Grove
2 miles - London Wildlife Trust
Riddlesdown SSSI
3 miles - London Wildlife Trust
Ledgers Wood
3 miles - Surrey Wildlife Trust

Nature reserve map

Reserve information

Riesco Drive
Greater London
Map reference
Great for...
Insect spotting
spring flowers
Best time to visit
Apr - Jul
Sep - Nov
Get directions
Find out here
Public transport
Plan your journey
Opening Times
Open at all times
10.40 hectares
Local Nature Reserve (LNR)
Street parking available on Riesco Drive and Broadcoombe
Dogs must be on lead
Grazing animals
Grazing animals in neighbouring field
Reserve manager
Shaun Marriott
Tel: 07710 194 268