Coton Hill Community Woodland
Coton Hill Community Woodland is a mixture of native woodland and grassland in the Coton Hill area of Shrewsbury. The site lies adjacent to part of the route where the River Severn ran until about 10,000 years ago and remains an important wetland habitat.
The main habitats at Coton Hill are the woodland which consists of native, mostly broadleaved deciduous trees which were planted in the 1990’s. The majority of the site is grassland which up to a few years ago was grazed by cattle. On the slope of the northern field there is a community orchard, planted with a variety of fruit trees and tended to by the local residents.
The lack of grazing over recent years has led to an explosion of ragwort (Senecio jacobaea) on the site. The poisonous ragwort is an often misunderstood and persecuted planted in the countryside (Ragwort Facts. All the ragwort science and information that you need to know.) Over 200 species of invertebrates can be found on ragwort and it is the food plant of the cinnebar moth caterpillar which is also found at Coton Hill. The management of ragwort conducted by the Countryside Team aims to keep the population in check and not eradicate it.
The River Severn would have cut through this area up until the end of the last ice age. At this point, changes to the landscape caused by the receding ice, meant that this area was cut off, becoming a low lying boggy area.
How to get there
Coton Hill Community Woodland is situated in the north of Shrewsbury, off Corporation Lane. It runs from the back of the houses on Benbow Close to the boundary fence near the allotments to the north. There are various access points all around the site.
The walk around the woodland is generally dry year round but may become slippy after heavy rainfall. The walk through the grassland areas is mostly dry but again can be soft under foot after prolonged rainfall.
The site is only accessible on foot so please be courteous to local residents if parking on the nearby roads.
The grid reference for the centre of the site is SJ 481 949.
The Post code for Corporation Lane SY1 2PB.
For Benbow Close SY1 2PW.