Abberton reservoir

Explore Essex with the Essex Wildlife Trust

Essex Wildlife Trust is the county's leading conservation charity, with 11 Visitor Centres, 87 Nature Reserves, 2 Nature Parks as well as managing 8,200 acres of land.

Essex is blessed with a rich and varied wildlife heritage, with heaths, wetlands and important wildlife corridors scattered throughout the county within the wider farmed countryside. These beautiful, and often vulnerable, wild places are not static and have evolved gradually over thousands of years in response to climate, soil, water and the impact of humans.

With visitor centres scattered throughout the county from the Naze in Walton and Fingringhoe Wick in Colchester to Chafford Gorges in Thurrock and Belfairs Woodland Centre in Leigh-on-Sea, there are plenty to choose from, or you may want to visit them all.

30 Days Wild - Go WILD with Essex Wildlife Trust

30 Days Wild is back! Join hundreds of thousands of people taking part in Essex Wildlife Trust's month long nature challenge this June. They are challenging you to do something a little bit wild every day: that's 30 Days of fun, exciting and simple Random Acts of Wildness. It's easy! They are giving you a free pack of goodies to help you plan your wild month, plus lots of ideas to inspire you to stay wild all throughout June (and beyond!).

How do I take part?

When you sign up, you'll receive a pack full of wild goodies including a wall chart, with a calendar (to help you plan your month) and an awesome poster! You'll also get a booklet packed full of ideas to help you go wild, a set of super stickers, and some wildflower seeds to brighten up your garden or window box! Simply share your videos and images of you and your family taking part tagging #30DaysWild and we will share them on social media! Sign up for your FREE pack here.

What’s happening in June?

The Big Wild Weekend is two days of wildlife and nature events taking place across the UK on Saturday 15th and Sunday 16th June, to celebrate the half way point of 30 Days Wild. There are plenty of events for all ages and interests to get involved with at Essex Wildlife Trust’s visitor centres, come and celebrate the wildest weekend of the year!

Essex Wildlife Trust Centres

Abberton Reservoir
Visitors can enjoy walks on Nature Reserve; with stunning panoramic views across the Reservoir and surrounding villages as well as superb views of the water’s edge from three accessible bird hides.
Fingringhoe Wick Visitor Centre
Set in a spectacular position overlooking the Colne Estuary, even on the dullest of days the views are fantastic. It offers the visitor real peace and quiet and a chance to escape from it all.
Thurrock Thameside Nature Park
A stunning and innovative visitor centre built on a former landfill site, with superb views over Mucking Flats SSSI and the Thames Estuary (SPA). Great birdwatching - and ship watching.
Bedfords Park
Set in the stunning grounds of Bedfords Park, an historic parkland site of 215 acres, owned and managed by the London Borough of Havering. The nature reserve affords fantastic views.
Belfairs Woodland Centre
The Centre provides a space for schools, groups and families to learn about south Essex’s fantastic ancient woodlands in an interactive way. Events and activities are arranged throughout the year.
Naze Visitor Centre
A unique coastal landscape of outstanding geological and biological importance, the Naze is an important site for migrating birds and boasting a number of habitats, both terrestrial and marine.
Chafford Gorges
The visitor centre is set in a spectacular position over looking Warren Gorge, offering 200 acres of green space for numerous wildlife and recreation for both residents and visitors.
Hanningfield Reservoir
Providing panoramic views over the 870 acre reservoir. The visitor centre is set in mature woodland and has proved a popular bat roost, with a beautiful carpet of Bluebells in the spring.
Ingrebourne Valley Visitor Centre

A partnership project between Essex Wildlife Trust & Havering Council, the centre is within Hornchurch Country Park, overlooking the marshland of River Ingrebourne Valley.