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Bodenham Arboretum

   
Address : Wolverley
Town/City : Kidderminster
County : Worcestershire
Country : England
Post code : DY11 5SY
Phone : 01562 852444
Web Site :  www.bodenham-arboretum.co.uk

The land that is now Bodenham Arboretum was purchased in March 1973 by the late David Binnian and his wife Jennifer. What began as a hobby, planting a few trees each winter, has developed into an area of outstanding landscape beauty and interest. 

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'Worcestershire's Hidden Garden'


One man's passion for Trees and English countryside realised Bodenham Arboretum which is now host to over 3000 species of trees and plants.


These 170 acres of mature woodland, pools and countryside are integrated within a working farm. Its custodians are the Binnian Family. Four generations, living on site and continuing the work that began when the land was purchased in May 1973 by David Binnian, It comprised a derelict farmhouse & 127 acres of scrub woodland and rough pasture which had been used as grazing for sheep.


The 'development' of the arboretum has been ongoing since 1973. Great care was taken during the design phase to work with the natural topography of the land. Pools were created with water supplied from a series of springs. The first 10 years were spent creating dams, pools, laying out internal roads and of course much tree planting.


The award winning visitors centre (CLA Best rural Building in England & Wales 1999) was essential when opening to the public in 1998.


The tree collection has been carefully selected, based on their suitability to 'The (often inclement and sometimes extreme) British Climate'. Design and layout are key considerations and when planting, full consideration to the natural topography of the land is essential.


This makes it all sound rather 'stoic' but whilst clear sympathy is paid to the landscape, there is also a variety of colours, shapes and sizes throughout the whole arboretum to create an interesting and visually pleasing vista, throughout the changing seasons.


Bodenham is home to some important collections of Acers, North American Alders and Oaks and the famous laburnum tunnel. As the seasons change so too do the colours, sounds, textures and views, no two visits are ever the same.


Bodenham Wood
Lying alongside the brook and to the eastern edge of Bodenham Arboretum, this area is managed on commercial lines – its management is designed to create timber of the highest quality. It is an exemplary mix of Hemlock nursing Oak, Douglas Fir, Thuja and Larch; Norway Spruce nursing Oak, Beech, Scots Pine, Corsican Pine and Ash.

Wildlife
A haven for wildlife, the pools provide a habitat for frogs, newts and toads and over 14 species of dragonfly have been identified at Bodenham. Fish can be found (and fed) in the big pool alongside ducks and heron. Whilst throughout the wider arboretum over 108 species of bird from Buzzards to Kingfishers have been identified. Regular visits and monitoring of nesting boxes and sites from the RSPB provide essential information regarding the health and success of a variety of birdlife.


The mature and diverse woodland of Bodenham Wood, provides the perfect residence for badger, squirrel, foxes, mice, bats and deer.


The Farm
Key to the sustainability of Bodenham the farm accounts for 100 acres of grassland for grazing sheep and cattle. Our Visitors Centre restaurant is 'Farm to Fork' – all meat used in our restaurant is from our own livestock.


Bodenham is a working farm and the highest standard of welfare is afforded to the animals throughout their life. Donkeys, sheep, cows, goats, pigs and rare breeds of chickens, geese and farm dogs can all be found. Spring brings the lambing and calving season and much joy to our younger and older visitors alike, as new life fills the barns and fields.


At Christmas time our farm buildings and barns are transformed to tell the Biblical story of the Nativity in our 'Follow the star Trail', with our animals playing a staring role – complete with baby donkey.


Forest School & Educational Visits
Bodenham is proud host to The World Outside Forest School and Outdoor Learning Provider, via two purpose built sites. This experiential learning method, designed to increase confidence and self esteem allows children and adults from a variety of cultures and backgrounds to learn 'hands on'; forging a lasting connection with the Natural World.


The World Outside provides bespoke sessions for school visits, curriculum linked days, Forest School, Under 5's wild play, Home Educators Network, family sessions, private parties and craft days.
Schools can also take advantage of the learning available throughout the wider arboretum with visits to the farm and further trails available.


The team at Bodenham also provide tree and estate work, as well as building and maintaining forest school sites in other locations.


Bodenham for All
Bodenham Arboretum and Farm is now twice qualified for heritage status; as an Arboretum and for 'The Creation of a new English Landscape'.


The diversity of species and the layout of the different areas provide year round interest and colour. Our Autumn colours made the national news in 2016 and there is no doubt that nature puts on a spectacular 'last hurrah' there each year. It is truly a photographer's dream location.


There is no 'play area', families and younger guests are supported to enjoy 'natures play area' and the wealth of experiences it can bring via fun trails throughout the grounds, quiz's, forest school and for 2017 a new and exciting trail in collaboration with local artist Denise Brownridge. The Animals on the farm and the wildlife throughout the Arboretum are a real highlight for visiting families.


A calendar of events throughout the year celebrate all that Bodenham can offer in the heart of the community, including the exceptionally popular Pumpkin Walk, charity functions, Carols by Candlelight (proceeds to Wolverley Church) and summer Concerts. The Viking weekend, local model boat club, willow weaving, visits from the Wildlife Trust and many more events are planned for the coming year.


The Visitor's Centre hosts the restaurant, providing exceptional quality 'Farm to Fork' carvery, lunches, afternoon teas and private functions throughout the year. The shop provides a fine selection of work from local artists, delicious artisan jams, honey and other unique gifts. Plant sales are available on the terrace.


Opening Hours 2017:
• Wed-Sun: Throughout the year 11am till 5pm
• Bank Holidays
• Thurs Evenings – May-Sept
• 7 Days a week throughout Oct & December
• Full up to date opening hours on website & Facebook page.
Contact: 01562 852444

 

Find Us
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Bodenham Arboretum is situated 20 miles west of Birmingham, 19 miles north of Worcester and 3 miles north of Kidderminster. Follow the brown signs "Bodenham Arboretum" westwards from Wolverley Church Island along the B4189


www.bodenham-arboretum.co.uk
Telephone 01562 852444

 

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Featured Attraction


Head for The Heights this year

Head for The Heights of Abraham, the award winning Hilltop Park situated in the spectacular Derwent Valley, just 9 miles from Chatsworth on the western edge of the Peak District National Park.

This "must see" Derbyshire jewel of an attraction is accessed by state of the art enclosed cable cars located on the banks of the River Derwent next to Matlock Bath railways station and the town's public car parks. Simply purchase your cable car ticket, and then sit back to enjoy Instagram-ready views of the geologically stunning valley as you climb to the summit.
TIP: You can save money by purchasing your tickets online in advance of your visit. Go to www.heightsofabraham.com for ticket prices and availability
Once you've purchased your cable car ticket, access to all the summit attractions is free, offering a great value-day-out whatever the weather. Head off to explore 60 acres of landscaped grounds, undercover interactive exhibitions, photography gallery, multi-media show caverns, adventure playgrounds, woodland walks and trails.

You can choose to dine in the Vista restaurant with its stunning views down the valley, or enjoy a snack in the café or out on the terrace with similar breath-taking views. Picnic areas can be found throughout the grounds, and during the school holidays you'll discover extra entertainment like the traditional Punch and Judy show (with a satisfying Heights of Abraham twist) for all the family to enjoy.
TIP: Dining times can be reserved in advance. This is recommended especially during the busiest times of the year. Phone 01629 582365 to make a reservation or pre-order the popular afternoon tea package.
Most visitors are surprised to learn that the Heights is in fact the Derbyshire's oldest tourist attraction. The cable car system has carried millions of visitors to the summit over the last thirty five years, yet it remains one of the latest chapters in the fascinating story of the Heights of Abraham. The Heights first opened as a Pleasure Ground in 1780 when visitors would make the climb from the valley floor on foot to witness some of the finest views across the surrounding area. Almost two and a half centuries later you are still able to wander around the estate with its zigzag paths and pleasant woodland trails. It is easy to understand why the area proved inspirational to the Romantic movement of the period.

As long ago as Roman times, Lead deposits may have been found in the area but it took another 1000 years before Lead mining was officially recorded on site. These impressive mines were active for over 400 years and left behind a legacy of passageways and awe-inspiring caverns. Today, thanks to all that hard work you can follow in the miners' footsteps down the passageways they created, going deep underground into the Heights' famous Show Caverns. From the glow of a single miner's candle to the whole cavern being awash with colour-changing lights, the Great Masson Cavern tour is one of the talking points of a visit to this Hilltop Park. Here, where the Equator was once situated millions of years ago, you can learn all about the rocks, minerals and underground formation of the Peak District. Equally, a visit to the Great Rutland Cavern is well worthwhile. First opened to the public over 200 years ago in 1810, you can experience a day in the life of the very miners who made your trip possible.

Those of an inquisitive mind should make sure they visit The Long View exhibition to see and hear the 230 year story about why the estate has been a favourite place to visit for many generations. On the upper floor the Fossil Factory brings to life fun and interesting facts about rocks, fossils and the formation of the Peak District. Tinker's Shaft SSSI is a spectacular location with a new viewing platform, high above the Derwent Valley and near the exit from the Great Masson Cavern. Interpretative panels provide information on the importance of the site, the natural history, the geology and the labyrinth of lead mines below Tinker's Shaft... directly beneath your feet!

The Heath and Heaven Gallery is a delightful pictorial journey through the Peak District from north to south and shot from the air on a single summer's day. Next to this you will find Through the Lens, a 12 minute film of the Great Masson guided tour, ideal for those who cannot, or do not wish to go underground during their visit.

If you're heading into Derbyshire or the Peak District, don't miss the opportunity to head for the Heights this year and tick this one off your bucket list. The cable car is just the start of a fascinating, relaxing and fun day out for everyone. Keep up to date with the news by visiting the official website for opening times, special offers and details of forthcoming events: www.heightsofabraham.com

MJPL6641MJPL6890The Long View ExhibitionMJPL7135Woodland Adventure

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