What better way to welcome the weekend and the return of some brighter weather than a walk in the woods just as the trees are springing into life with that glorious green of spring and new life? Burnham Beeches, located on the Buckinghamshire/Berkshire border not far from Slough, is a National Nature Reserve and home to 220 ha of principally beech and oak wood pasture. The woods are full of trails suitable for all types of user – from the <1mile sensory trail suitable for those requiring easy access, numerous other routes suitable for all-terrain pushchairs on hard mud paths and board-walks and smaller trails for the keen walker. You can download a copy of suitable accessible routes here. There is also a cafe serving food, drinks and fantastic ice cream to reward your efforts and a lovely open green area behind the car park suitable for field games or letting children let off steam with a run-around.
Duck-ponds, wild ponies and cattle, home to dormice and raised boardwalks with the tantalising promise of snakes and other wildlife down below will all capture the interest and imagination of younger walkers visiting Burnham Beeches and if that isn’t enough, they may be interested to learn that nearby Pinewood Studios amongst others, frequently uses the woods for films with Robin Hood Prince of Thieves, Goldfinger, The Princess Bride and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix all borrowing a little of the Beeches’ magic to bring to the big screen.
Burnham Beeches are easily accessible. There is plenty of parking on site or you can hop on a bus from the centre of Slough 4km away. Burnham is an easy daytrip from London too with frequent trains from Paddington to Slough, where you can pick up the buses 74 or 40 with stops nearby.
The beeches are open from 8am to dusk each day and the cafe and toilet facilities are generally open from 10am – 5pm every day except Christmas day. More information on Burnham Beeches can be found here.