Prospect Park is Reading’s largest open space and gets its name from the fine views across the Kennet Valley and beyond, which can be enjoyed best from the Mansion House. The regency white stuccoed grade II listed mansion (now a restaurant) is set on a hill at the highest point of the park. The park has broad sweeps of short cut grass, with areas of meadow grassland. An pond was created to the south of the house and attracts an assortment of wildlife, while ‘The Rookery’ can be found to the north – a mature oak woodland and Wildlife Heritage Site.
A favourite amongst children is the mini steam train, run by voluntary enthusiasts on the first Sunday of each month, near the Bath Road entrance. The site also features a wide variety of sports facilities and a well-equipped children’s play area. The park is also host to a number of annual events including the Reading Carnival and a steam fair.
Liebenrood Road, Reading, RG30 2ND
Lousehill Copse | Well Hidden Local Nature Reserve
A remnant ancient woodland that has been dated back to over 300 years ago, in the residential area of Tilehurst, In 1992 site was designated a Local Nature Reserve.
Lousehill Copse is dominated by a broadleaf canopy and mixed shrub layer. A circular path takes you round the wood with several spur paths connecting to local neighbourhoods. The wood includes steep slopes but as a result you do get a canopy eye view of the woodland!
The nature reserve is 13.03 hectares (32.2 acres) in size, and is under the management of the Reading Borough Council. The majority of the site comprises natural mature woodland surrounded by housing and featuring a pond, whilst the northern section of the reserve, also known as Comparts Plantation, is a grassy meadow area. To the south the reserve is crossed by Dee Road.
Along with Blundells Copse & McIlroy Park, Lousehill Copse forms part of West Reading Woodlands.
Lousehill Copse is located at Tay Road, Tilehurst, Reading, RG30 4DR
Clayfield Copse | Reading’s first Local Nature Reserve
A large, mainly natural open space consisting of fields and native woodlands adjoining the Oxfordshire countryside. Two fields are recreational areas. Some woodland is being actively managed as hazel coppice, and traditional dead hedging defines some of the ancient woodland areas. A wild flower meadow and other fields are being left to regenerate woodland. Beautiful bluebells spot in bluebell season.
Designated as a Reading Nature Reserve in 1991 (and was Reading’s first Local Nature Reserve). Clayfield Copse also features a Sculpture Trail (suitable for pushchairs/wheelchairs) and two of the fields are recreational areas with a skate park.
Popular site for family walker, dog walkers
Clayfield Copse is located at Caversham Park Road, Caversham, Reading, RG4 6R
Basildon Park | An Unmissable Berkshire Heritage Site
If you’re looking for an amazing family fun walk, Basildon Park is the one. With 400 acres of stunning Berkshire countryside for the dogs to run around in and seasonal trails to keep the kids entertained, Basildon is a true gem. Also take advantage of the National Trust property by exploring the stunning 18th century house – it’s a true beauty and the decoration has been restored from how it would have been back in it’s day.
There are many things to do & explorer at Basildon Park
Explore Basildon Park, a stunning Georgian mansion surrounded by parkland. Once the home of Lord and Lady Iliffe, it played host to many glamourous parties in the 1950s.
Also if you are fan of Downton Abbey you would like to know that in this house is where the interiors of Grantham House are set.
With an impressive restoration story of their own, find out what the gardens of Basildon Park have been through to be where they are today.
Explore over 400 acres of parkland. With plenty of walks and family fun to be had, you’ll enjoy celebrating the outdoors here, whatever the season.
Basildon Park is located at Lower Basildon, Reading RG8 9NR
Note: As Basildon Park is owned by the National Trust, there is a charge