Friends of Coombe Wood

The Thundersley Neighbourhood

Other woodlands and open spaces in Thundersley.

In addition to Coombe Wood, there are several other open spaces, with free public access in Thundersley. They are all designated as Local Wildlife Sites, and are listed in the Castle Point register for these. There is a link (in brackets, with the prefix CP) for each site’s entry after the site name. This link provides fairly technical information as a Word document. In most cases there is an additional link to a site with further, more general, information. All these sites are listed in Oliver Rackham’s book: The Ancient Woodlands of England: The Woods of South-East Essex, published in 1986 by Rochford Borough Council

These sites are listed here in order of proximity and are shown in the map below:

To the immediate south there is Kents Hill Wood (CP9) on the other side of the London Road. This small wood is described by Rackham: “The flora is poor, especially in ancient-woodland plants”.
To the south-east there is Thundersley Glen (CP14). See also Castle Point Borough Council.
To the north-east there is Thundersley Common(CP21). See also Castle Point Borough Council.
To the south-east, beyond Thundersley Glen, there is Shipwrights Wood(CP18). See also Castle Point Borough Council.
In the north-west there is North Benfleet Hall Wood near Woodside Park (CP7). See also the Castle Point Wildlife Group.

All of these are either Public Open Spaces with access free to all, or there is unrestricted access.


Thundersley on Foot by Eileen Peck

In the Autumn of 2010 a book of walks around Thundersley called ‘Thundersley on Foot’ was published, 1,000 copies being printed with funding coming from the Essex Neighbourhood Forum.

The book was a fun collaborative effort with various people in the local community contributing photographs, line drawings, maps, historical details and information about the natural environment.

Although the book was intended simply as a book of walks it has become a celebration of Thundersley as a good place to live and has, we like to think, gone some way to encourage local residents to feel a sense of community and a sense of attachment to and ownership of their ‘place’.

In the 15 months since publication most of the books have been sold and a walking group ‘Four Seasons’ has been set up with walks around the area taking place four times a year.

The book is being sold at various retail outlets and profits, so far amounting to £1,250, have been donated to Friends of Coombe Wood, Castle Point Swimming Club for the Disabled, Essex Crossroads Young Carers group and Southend Mind.

  • Around 150 books (retail price normally £3.50) remain unsold and are available free to any local charity who would like to sell them for their funds. If you know of a local charity who would like to sell the book for their funds please contact Eileen Peck on 078 1369 3107.
  • Guidelines on how the book was financed, produced and sold — ‘Your Town on Foot’ — are also available for anyone who would like to make a book for their own locality.
  • The most recent Thundersley on Foot walk was planned for Sunday 19th February starting promptly at 2 pm from the White Hart pub, Thundersley.

The Wider Neighbourhood

Other woodlands and open spaces in Benfleet.

Beyond Thundersley, there are a number of other woods and open spaces. These comprise:

Hadleigh Country Park

Hadleigh Country Park was formerly known as Hadleigh Castle Country Park, and is still widely refered to by that name. It is owned by Essex County Council and Castle Point Borough Council, and managed by Essex County Council Ranger Service.

Pound Wood, Tile Wood and Little Haven

Pound Wood and Tile Wood are owned and managed by the Essex Wildlife Trust. The Little Haven Reserve is owned by the Little Haven Children’s Hospice Trust and managed by the Essex Wildlife Trust.

West Wood

West Wood is owned by Castle Point Borough Council and managed by the Castle Point Wildlife Group.