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Folly Farm Centre
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Folly Farm
for yesterday’s countryside

Wildflower meadows and woodland surround the Folly Farm Centre at the heart of Folly Farm, a 250-acre nature reserve between Bath and Bristol which offers spectacular views over Chew Valley Lake and the Mendips.

What to look out for

The meadows are of a type now rare in Britain. Unspoilt by pesticides and fertilisers, in summer they are brimming with flowers such as betony, ox-eye daisy and heath spotted orchid. In late summer, they are covered with drifts of black knapweed and devil's-bit scabious which attract butterflies such as ringlet, small tortoiseshell, gatekeeper and marbled white.

The woodland floor of Dowling's Wood is extremely rich in springtime flowers, such as primrose, bluebell and early purple orchid. An extensive badger sett can be seen from the Access for All path in the woodland.

Look out for nuthatch, buzzard and great spotted woodpecker. Tawny owls also nest and roost on the farm.

Further information

The Folly Farm Centre is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Trust.
The wildflower meadows and Dowlings Wood are Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).


Dogs are not allowed at Folly Farm because it is a working farm.


  Getting there by
Bike View a location map of the reserve on the National Cycle Network website.
Public transport Go to www.traveline.org.uk

From the A37 turn right at the Chelwood roundabout onto the A368 towards Bishop Sutton. After about 2 miles go past the turning to Chew Magna and take the turning on your left signposted for the Folly Farm Centre before reaching Stowey.

Download directions here.


Further information
Reserves in this area
Look for...

Early purple orchid

Darin Smith

Barn owl
Darin Smith

Marbled white butterfly

Peacock butterfly
Joe Clarke

Migrant hawker
Rich Andrews

Greater spotted woodpecker
Darin Smith

reserve map
reserve map
Reserve map National Cycle Network
Location details
Grid ref
ST 600 604
Area 101 hectares
Nearest postcode to reserve BS39 4DW (Folly Farm Centre)
Ways into wildlife

Folly Farm is one of our Top 10 nature reserves!

Download a detailed walk for this reserve here (PDF).

Download the full Top 10 Reserves Guide (PDF).