Organic Countrysidelogo

Noakes Grove News

Noakes Grove Community Nature Reserve and Smallholding


13 lambs full details


Tuesday 19th Sept 7:30pm for 8:00pm Garden Room, Jubilee Gardens, Saffron Walden

Saffron Walden's Living Landscape: an illustrated talk by Dr David Corke

Followed by AGM of Organic Countryside CIC

Noakes Grove Entrance

Download two-page visitor guide and map

  • Noakes Grove, in Redgates Lane, Sewards End, Saffron Walden is almost nine acres of flower-rich meadows, ancient woodland and scrub with rides that attract butterflies. ORGANIC COUNTRYSIDE CIC [Community Interest Company] owns and manages the land on behalf of is members.

What's a CIC? - find out more about us

  • You can visit Noakes Grove for free whenever you like. There is a small (4 car) car park which is best avoided in very wet conditions. There are map & guide leaflets in a dispenser on the gate post. Please return them when you leave

How can I become a friend of Noakes Grove?

Sewards End fete

Our stall (and two of our lambs) at the fete did well. Several new people joined as Friends of Noakes Grove and tried their luck at the Treasure Hunt. The treasure was an excellent den making kit donated by Muddyfaces (suppliers of everything needed by forest schools and free-range children).

Essex Field Club meeting at Noakes Grove - next visit Saturday 16th September, 11.00am

The meeting on June 17th produced an excellent catch of moths: our species list now totals 118. Even better a new species of butterfly (the Marble White) has colonised the reserve

The Essex Field Club includes expert naturalist members who, we hope, will identify many Noakes Grove species that we did not know about before. You are welcome to join them on their next visit.


Affinity Water recently visited the pond they have sponsored to see children from the home-schooling group release frog tadpoles in the pond

Releasin tadpoles

Countryside Stewardship

We are very pleased that Natural England have approved our Countryside Stewardship plans: they will grant-aid our hedgerow, scrub and wild-flower meadow management, about £500 per year for five years.

Treasure Seekers

The Saffron Searchers visited Noakes Grove with their metal detectors recently. No Anglo-Saxon gold, unfortunately, but some interesting finds which the searchers were kind enough to give us for our records. These include a Roman coin (there is a Roman road a quarter mile north-east of Noakes Grove), a George III farthing and several small bells that would have been worn by farm animals long ago. Does the Roman coin mean Arbury field was already open land in Roman times or had someone lost the coin while exploring a piece of the wild wood?

Aerial photos

Thanks to Historic England (English Heritage as was) we now have a series of aerial photographs showing Noakes Grove from the middle of World War II to the early 1990s.

4th Aug 1988: note chalky building waste dumped in "Noakes" field 3rd July 1949. Note hedge in field to the west of Arbury (our sheep field): the hedge was gone by 1988

Top of page