Old Broom Nature Reserve
Know before you go
Public access only on twice annual open days - ring 01473 890089 for details
Not suitable for wheelchairs
When to visit
Opening timesNo public access. Access during special events for members only, please contact the Trust for more details 01473 890089.
Best time to visitSpring and autumn
About the reserve
Extraordinary, magical, there are many ways to describe Old Broom and none would be an exaggeration. Wood-pasture was a once extensive habitat, but much was grubbed out for agriculture, especially with the enclosure of common land. Wood-pasture that survived enclosure was often incorporated into the parkland of great estates and this most likely ensured its preservation.
Today, just fragments of this important habitat remain in Suffolk, with Old Broom amongst the best. Ecologically invaluable, the deadwood and hollow interiors of these great trees support many specialist fungi and invertebrates and the bark can host similarly rare lichens and mosses. The soils and grassland are equally ancient and undisturbed and being on the edge of the Brecks share many common Breckland characteristics, including periglacial vegetation stripes.
Owned and deeply cared for by the Hanbury family for two generations, Old Broom was gifted to the Trust in 2013, an act of great generosity that will ensure that this extraordinary place will remain extraordinary in perpetuity.