Our history

Long and interesting history

The field in the centre of the Reserve was once the site of clay pits for the brickworks, and two areas of woodland carr and several seasonal pools are located in where the settlement beds were. These were an important part of the washing process for the clay.

Part of the Reserve is now a working wood with trees being cut in rotation on a coppice cycle. The Hazel produce is either used on the Reserve or sold to hedge layers or hurdle makers. Sweet Chestnut is sold as fencing posts, post and rail fence and revetment posts.

The Reserve is secondary ancient woodland and the show of spring flowers is most impressive.

Sweet Chestnut trees were planted to supply the hop industry that was located in the neighbourhood.

Registered charity since 1968

Regular meetings and talks

Members meet on a regular basis, once a month, at the field centre for talks by visiting speakers about a variety of subjects relating, predominatly to wildlife topics.

Non members are welcome to attend for a small donation

The conservation volunteers meet on the 1st & 3rd Sundays throughout the year for the up keep and maintenance of the Reserve

Run by volunteers

We wouldn't be here without our hardworking volunteers

The Rowhill Conservation Volunteers are an active group looking after the Rowhill Nature Reserve.

Tasks vary from light work to quite physical, so a certain level of mobility and fitness is required.

Volunteers are welcome from the age of 14. Younger volunteers, for example Scouts, Guides, Duke of Edinburgh’s etc. are very welcome by prior arrangement and accompanied by a guardian.

A wide variety of tasks according to the season and habitat, including: clearing rhododendrons, hay making in late Summer, path making and coppicing in the Winter.

Tea, coffee and biscuits are provided for volunteers, but please bring lunch if you are planning to stay all day.

The copse can be quite muddy, especially in Winter. Please wear old or sturdy boots and bring waterproofs according to weather conditions. Tools, gloves and helmets are provided.

When: the first and third Sunday of the month. There are 2 sessions, starting 9.45am and 2pm – finishing up around 4pm

Where: Meet at the Field Centre. Cranmore Lane. Please email rowhillvolunteer@gmail.com if you wish to join.

Some facts about us

Some facts about us

The reserve covers 55 acres, and was once part of a private estate that produced timber and bricks. Signs of this can still be seen. Rowhill Copse is a Suitable Alternative Natural Greenland (SANG).

Rowhill Copse is now owned by Rushmoor Borough Council and managed by the Rowhill Nature Reserve Society. It was given Local Nature Reserve status in 1986 having been managed by the society since 1968. It is now returning, in part at least, into the working wood that it once was. The purpose in being a SANG is to provide protection to the Thames Basin Heaths Special Protection Area (SPA) by providing an alternative area. The local SPA is Caeser’s Camp across the road. Within the SPA dog walking and walking in general is discouraged. Within Rowhill walkers and dogs are welcome. The Field Centre provides shelter and refreshments and w.c. facilities. Rowhill receives funding to promote its role as a SANG. The car parks around Caesar’s camp are largely closed but the Rowhill remains opened intended for use by people using the copse. Everybody is welcome.








Queens Award for Voluntary Services

The Society are proud to have received the Queens Award for Voluntary Services, recognised by a commemorative crystal and a certificate signed by HRH the Queen, and is on display in our field centre.

The Award acknowledged the work of all our volunters working on both the management of various habitas in the reserve, and those maintaining the FC, meeting and greeting visitors and undertaking an educational program, fundraising and meetings.

Our Chairman, Sheila Brooks, on behalf of the Society said “We are thrilled to be receiving this award on behalf of all the volunteers and members of the society past and present, who have helped make Rowhill what it is today.”

“We are aware that the reserve is only loaned to us and the work done now is not only for the benefit of our present day visitors, but also for the future generations.”

“If you’ve never been to the reserve, it sits on the border of Aldershot and Farnham – with the visitor centre in Cranmore Lane -and is well worth a visit.”

Loved by our community


Join our lively community of volunteers

You can help us maintain the reserve by donating or volunteering.