A Landscape Untouched by a Generation of Progress
A step into Lanlay Meadows is a step back in time, where sprawling, unkempt hedgerows meet gnarled, twisted old oak trees. Farmed for centuries, this small fragment of land has lain unchanged for decades, avoiding the wrath of today’s flail hedge trimmers and fertilisers and becoming a rare haven for a huge array of wildlife. The River Ely, a playground for otters and kingfishers, meanders along the northern edge of the five fields which form this rambling, pre-war meadow; while scattered mature and veteran trees with their fallen boughs serve as feeding grounds and refuges for a variety of birds, bugs and bats.
You can explore this idyllic relic of pre-war farming on two footpaths that wind from east to west. Wander through meadows still cut for hay and which explode into a riot of colour in early summer, through Rhos pasture – a nationally rare habitat, and end your journey in a wild area of open scrubland slowing returning to woodland.
To read more, go to nationaltrust.org.uk/lanlay