Noakes Grove

noakes-map-copyA nature reserve close to Sewards End, The yellow “P” on the map marks the gated (not locked) entrance to car park. The red marker shows where “CB10 2LW” will get you using a satnav. Then go north on Redgates Lane.

Noakes Grove belongs to Organic Countryside Community Interest Company: a not-for-profit organisation that anyone may join as a “friend” (annual subscription £5) or full (life) shareholder (£100 minimum). The smallholding is managed in a completely organic way

We raise sheep and lambs in the meadow. As well as the meadow we have a small ancient woodland, a rough flower-rich field and an area of thorn scrub criss-crossed with grassy rides that possess a marvellous array of wild flowers, including several rarities. It is a truly beautiful place. The public are welcome visit Noakes Grove at any time, on foot and with well-behaved children and dogs. There is a Forest School for very young children, occasional open days to study the wildlife and regular work parties for those willing help manage the nature reserve. Full details on the website.

Visiting Noakes Grove is free, but maintaining Noakes Grove (just to pay the insurance and tree surgery costs for example) costs a lot. If you enjoy visiting Noakes Grove, please become a “Friend of Noakes Grove” for a donation of £5.00 per year per household. You can join online at We’ll keep you informed (by email) of special events and when any of our produce (lamb, apple juice) is available for purchase.

Footpaths from Saffron Walden



2018 work parties at Noakes Grove

The January work party was so successful and such good fun that our coppicing work on the roadside hedge has almost finished, so next time we will also be able to have a go at some of the work that needs to be done in the rides through the thorn scrub. The day was bright and sunny, if cold, and we were delighted when Robert and Suzanne Walker stopped by to give us the most wonderful gift – three baby trees: two spindles and a crab apple. Spindle trees are not only native to this area, but are often associated with magic and good luck – let’s hope that works! The three trees were ceremoniously planted in the now coppiced hedgerow at the end of a very good day. Thank you very much Robert and Suzanne.

Next work party is:

Sunday 25th February. 10.00 am-3.00 pm – come any time.


Sunday 11 March

Friends of Noakes Grove

We are really pleased that new members continue to join: either as Friends for a £5 donation per year or as full company members for a one-off donation of at least £100. If you know someone who might like to join please ask them to visit

Children’s Activities.

There are now three groups of children’s activities at Noakes Grove. The latest is:

Relaxation and Mindfulness Retreats: At the Retreat we teach relaxation and mindfulness by encouraging children to use their senses in a fun and interactive way. Children are guided by their innate love for the natural world. The retreat will enable children to learn lifelong skills towards good health and wellbeing. Together we will create a relaxing story that can be used at home benefiting the whole family.
After-school seasonal sessions run on Tuesdays all year at 3.45 pm – 5.15 pm starting in September. For more information please contact. Nikki at (07966579345) or visit

The established groups are:

Forest school: In the middle of Noakes Grove, under the shade of an ancient oak tree, is a ring of oak-logs. On alternate Fridays these make an outdoor classroom for Nelly’s Den. Pre-school children (and their mums or dads) come from 10 until 11.30. There is always a snack and drink, children can dig and search for bugs, sing songs, play games, use tools to make natural crafts, learn about the natural world and promote nature connection.

Run by Tara Webb, you can find out more about Nelly’s Den at or at their Facebook page Email Nelly’s Den

Home-schooling group: On Tuesdays a wider age range of children spend several hours at Noakes Grove (again with their parents or carers). This is the local home-schooling group who make the whole of Noakes Grove their classroom for a day.

Contact Saffron Walden and Bishop’s Stortford Home Education Group email (Isabelle):