Roman River Valley Nature Reserve

Roman River Valley
Beautiful Demoiselle damselfly

Photo - Guy Edwardes / 2020VISION

Roman River Valley

Roman River Valley Nature Reserve

Stroll along the banks of the Roman River in one of the best preserved river valleys in Essex, passing under swaying willow trees and into the peaceful woodland


The Heath
Layer de la Haye

OS Map Reference

A static map of Roman River Valley Nature Reserve

Know before you go

18 hectares

Parking information

Parking available off New Cut and The Heath road

Walking trails

Footpaths through the woods and along the rivers edge


Can be muddy and slippery when wet, also with some slopes 


Under effective control
Under effective control

When to visit

Opening times

Accessible at all times

Best time to visit

April to July

About the reserve

Stroll alongside the meandering Roman River, where Water Voles and the occasional Otter can be seen diving and playing in its waters, as Dragonflies skim over the surface.

The river passes through ancient woodland, part of Needle Eye Wood, filled with Oaks, Hornbeam and old Yews. Below the trees Yellow Archangel and Moschatel flower, while woodland birds flit overhead with the occasional Nightingale.

The spring-fed marshes are home to rare plant species like the beautiful Small Teasel, with purple anthers pocking past its small white flowers and woolly spines, and an array of rich insect life.


Environmental designation

Ancient Woodland
Local Wildlife Site (LWS)