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About Northward Hill

Grey herons at St Albans (Aren't birds brilliant!)

Image: Nigel Blake

On a ridge overlooking the Thames Marshes, Northward Hill includes a lovely bluebell wood where nightingales sing in spring. Over 100 pairs of grey herons nest in the trees, with what is one of the UK's largest and most famous colonies of little egrets, whose numbers have increased year-on-year since they first nested here in 2000, reaching an amazing 93 pairs by 2007.

The reserve also includes great swathes of flat marshes, where lapwings, redshanks, and avocets breed. In winter you can see wigeons and teals, buzzards, hen harriers and merlins.

There are many miles of trails through to the Heronry Viewpoint and some of the most inspiring views of the Thames valley.

Opening times

Open at all times.

Entrance charges

Free, but donations to help us continue our work here are welcome.

Information for dog owners

Dogs are only allowed on the Saxon Shore Way and bridleways.

Contact us

Where is it?

  • Lat/lng: 51.458196,0.544553
  • Grid reference: TQ768765
  • Nearest town: Hoo, Kent
  • County: Kent
  • Country: England

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