Welcombe Hills

Welcombe Hills Kate Sugden

Kate Sugden

Perfect reserve for walking and taking in the views across the landscape with flower-rich grassland, woods and ponds


Close to the centre of Stratford-upon-Avon
CV37 6XR

OS Map Reference

SP 205 565
A static map of Welcombe Hills

Know before you go

60 hectares

Parking information

Parking available in Maidenhead Road and off Ingon Lane, Clopton. Alternatively there is a car park on the A439. Take care when crossing this busy road. As you leave the car park, cross the road and turn right.

Grazing animals

Cattle: Apr - Oct

Walking trails

Steep slopes in parts, access via kissing gates


Steep slopes in parts, access via kissing gates. 


Dogs permitted

When to visit

Opening times

Open at all times

Best time to visit

March to October

About the reserve

What's it like to visit?

The Welcombe Hills offer delightful walks through grassland and woodland. Woolly thistle, quaking-grass and the diminutive adder’s-tongue grow in the grasslands where ant hills created by yellow meadow ants are a distinctive feature. The woodland contains oak, horse-chestnut and beech with English elm. Birds are plentiful, with great spotted woodpecker, sparrowhawk, little owl, treecreeper and finches enjoying the woodland where ravens breed in spring. Brimstone butterflies are numerous in the spring sunshine.   

History of the Welcombe Hills: a Shakespearean tale

The reserve may have got its name from a historic well found here with its inscription 'SJC 1686'. Margaret, daughter of William Clopton who died in 1592 supposedly drowned here. It was around this time that Shakespeare was writing his famous play, Hamlet, and its believed that this tragic event provided the inspiration for his 'Ophelia' and her lonely death.  

What you can do here

Volunteer work party at this reserve!

Meet monthly on a Friday: 

  • Try out conservation tasks on your local nature reserve
  • Meet new people and make new friends!
  • Help protect wildlife and restore wildflower meadows
  • Do your bit for your local community
  • No prior experience or minimum commitment required

Want to find out more?

Let us know you’re interested! Email volunteer@wkwt.org.uk or call 024 7630 2912. 

Audio trail

In the spring of 2016, a unique partnership project from Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, Playbox Theatre and the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust completed an audio trail across the Welcombe Hills. The project was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. The audio trail can be listened to here

For more information about the Welcombe Hills, we recommend Gavin Griffiths' website www.thewelcombehills.co.uk.

Contact us

Karl Curtis
Contact number: 024 7630 2912
Contact email: enquiries@wkwt.org.uk

Environmental designation

Local Nature Reserve (LNR)

Location map

Enjoy an audio tour of the Welcombe hills

Discover the trail

Kate Sugden