Melwood Conservation Group

 Welcome to Melwood Conservation Group's website

Melwood is a Local Nature Reserve (LNR) on the Cambridgeshire/Hertfordshire border in the village of Meldreth. The land is owned by Cambridgeshire County Council and leased to Meldreth Parish Council.  It is managed by volunteers of the Melwood Conservation Group.(MCG)

The Group was founded in 2003 and the LNR was granted in 2006.  The land consists of approx 2 acres of secondary woodland formerly either orchard, vegetable garden or scrub and had been neglected for some years.  MCG manages the wood under a 5 year management plan with regular work parties throughout the year.

A local landowner owns an adjacent meadow to the north and has kindly consented that this is also managed within MCG's remit.  At the south eastern end the landowner has also agreed that some work may be done on his property and this enables us to gain more light for the wood  by careful management of trees and bush along the boundary line.

The River Mel, one of Britain’s rare chalk streams, runs through the reserve of Melwood. A recent project, organised by local history enthusiasts, celebrates the history and the beauty of this small stream. You can read more on their website,

 We need more hands-on volunteers!

  Please come and join us - register your interest on our 'Contact us' Page

Tree management
  • Coppicing

    Part of the site at the rear south end will be left to grow naturally.
    The front south west end has been coppiced to allow more light
    and encourage more floral ground cover.
    The Yews along the western boundary of the meadow have
    been coppiced to form a hedge. This will encourage more
    flowers in the meadow. There is a regular programme of seeding
    and introduction of young native plants

  • Trees and Wild flowers

    Twenty-six trees and bushes have been
    identified including silver birch, ash,
    sycamore, beech and hawthorn. Thirty-nine species of other plants together with
    several fungal varieties are present.

  • River Mel

    The Mel river running to the west of the wood is one of only 161 chalk streams in England. It originates from springs at Melbourn Bury. Such streams tend to be very clear as they have been filtered through layers of chalk. Conservation has improved the water flow
    and the river now supports a larger population of invertebrates and hence trout have returned.
    The endangered water vole also lives in the banks of the river.
    If you are lucky you may spot a kingfisher flashing past.

Management Plans..
Click for our 2016-2020 Plan:
Melwood Plan_2016_2020.pdf

Our first Plan covered
        2011 to 2015:
Click to download:
  Melwood Summary Management Plan.pdf
  The 5 year Work Schedule

"Volunteers of Melwood Conservation Group work to maintain this LNR for the benefit of wildlife and the local community"
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