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Charles Ackers Redwood Grove and Naylor Pinetum


Video credit: Royal Forestry Society 2013


  • A unique grove of Coast Redwoods
  • An area aiming to preserve the legacy of redwoods planted in 1857 by John Naylor
  • Commercial forestry is behind education and conservation as the main objective
  • An opportunity to educate about forest management and the site’s history, and provide habitats for conservation purposes

The forest at Leighton contains one of the most famous and historically significant stands of trees in the UK. The cathedral-like stand of towering coast redwoods was planted in 1857 and still stands today, unthinned and healthy.

Charles Ackers purchased the site in 1931 and was so impressed by the redwoods that he planted more, before generously gifting the woods to the RFS in 1958 under the agreement that the Old Grove would be protected. The work at Leighton now focuses on maintaining the redwoods and the Naylor Pinetum, started in 1961 and containing over 100 specimens and many wild-flowers. There is some minor thinning work in other parts of the wood to bring in money and ensure the trees grow as healthily as possible. There is also a chalet made from locally grown timber, and winner of the prestigious Timber Trades Award for the best use of softwoods out-of-doors nationwide in 2002.

There is permissive access to the site, and the warden will show groups around, by prior arrangement. Please contact us.

For more information about our woods at Leighton please look at the information below; these can be downloaded under the resources column on the right-hand side of this page.

  • The visitors’ information sheet provides a more detailed history of the site, summarises the challenges the woods face and a few pictures to illustrate how beautiful and interesting the woods are.
  • The leaflet provides a brief history of the site, and what trees, plants and wildlife you should look and listen out for when you visit. Information regarding the management is also summarised, while the map will help you plan your visit around the woods.

 Dd Leighton 14072014

Attachment    (click to download)
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Fax:01295 670798