- Judy Woods, Station Road, Wyke, Bradford, BD12 8LA
- Open 24 hours a day all year round
- Accessibility route
- Nature reserve
- Walking routes
Station Rd, Halifax HX3, UK
Judy Woods is the collective name given to the largest woodland site managed by City of Bradford MDC in the south of the district. The wooded area comprises Judy Wood, Old Hanna Wood, Low Wood, Doctor Wood, and Royds Hall Great Wood. These names reflect prominent people and landscape uses in the local area over several centuries.
Measuring 40 hectares in size, Judy Woods is the largest woodland site managed by City of Bradford MDC in the south of the district. Regularly maintained pathways lead you through Judy Woods whether on foot, in a wheelchair, or by pram for the younger visitors. Walks leaflets are available to download providing guidance as you visit the site.
High canopy dominated by mature beech trees greets you at the southern section of woodland from Station Road. Watercourses run through the site adding further interest with small tributaries meandering through the trees and tumbling into the beck in the lowest part of the wood.
Although appearing natural and calm these days, there is a rich history of coal mining throughout the local area including the woodland site. The underlying geology of the site is Coal Measures, unlike the majority of the Bradford area’s Gritstone, and the landscape reflects this with areas of woodland interspersed with agricultural land of large fields and hedgerows set in relatively low rolling hills. The wood itself bears testimony to the mining past of this area, with numerous bell pit sites and small spoil heaps. In the 19th century much of the area was owned by the Low Moor Iron Company, and their tramroads and embankments are also visible and an important part of the areas industrial heritage.
A visit to Judy Woods at any time of year will result in wildlife sightings. The mature woodlands are home to numerous species and the neighbouring farmland provides additional buffering habitat. Watch for foraging bats on the woodland edge in summer, fieldfares feeding in the open pastures through winter, and English bluebells seemingly reflecting the rich blue skies in late spring. The autumnal colour amongst the foliage of the broadleaved trees is not to be missed!
Watching wildlife is something to stimulate all of your senses so don’t just rely on your eyes. Sniff the air for stinkhorns, feel the bark of the various trees, and listen for the flight of numerous insects as their wings beat furiously in the air.