A special green oasis
Discover Thrupp Lake Radley on the outskirts of Abingdon. A truly special green oasis that has blossomed almost where you least expect it. In this small corner of busy South East England sits one of the best places to see wetland wildlife that you could hope to find.
Directions to Thrupp Lake, Radley
Thrupp Lake, Radley is just outside Abingdon and 15 minutes drive from Oxford.
Postcode: OX14 3NG
OS Landranger 164 Ref SU 520978
Download our Map & Walking Guide. (pdf)
A magical place all year round
Thrupp Lake is magical at any time of year: In spring the trees begin to blossom, herons gather, cygnets hatch and kingfishers dart by. During summer the lake shimmers with emergent damselflies and darting dragonflies. In autumn the trees give spectacular colour, whilst swans glide beneath them, and a winter’s mist or snow can transform the lake into a magical wetland which throngs with a spectacular multitude of overwintering birds.
Walking around the lake and hearing its birdsong always gives visitors an enormous sense of calm and well-being. During the early summer there is also the opportunity to enjoy common spotted orchids and white helleborines.
There is a circular walk around the lake, a gentle stroll of around 1.7km or 1 mile. There is a wooden boardwalk across the North West corner that gives you the chance to walk over water. A newly completed bird hide with a green roof that blends in to the surroundings and provides an opportunity to watch and photograph any skittish birds without disturbing them. A wonderful addition on the North East corner is a wooden shelter shaped like a water lily in bloom, that provides warm and dry seating on windy days so that you can enjoy your view of the lake without any disturbance.
With its scenic, tranquil and wildlife rich habitats, we hope that after visiting you will fall in love with Thrupp Lake, just as many local people have done already.
Earth Trust welcomes dogs to all sites but please be responsible and pick up after your dog, bags and bins are available at Thrupp Lake - thank you.
General fishing is not permitted at Thrupp Lake. An independent fishing syndicate hold the fishing rights for Thrupp Lake and members are the only people permitted to fish the lake. No member places are currently available. Please contact Lorretta Waters, Neighbourhood Wildlife Warden, on 07982 218493 if you have any questions.
Site Management Plan
If you are interested in reading more about Thrupp Lake, you can download the full Site Management Plan and the 5 year work plan for 2013 - 2018.
You can also download the Appendices.
The Radley Wetlands Centre – a special place for the community and wildlife
The Earth Trust is embarking on an ambitious multi-phase project to develop Thrupp Lake and its surroundings into a beautiful and inspiring haven for wildlife and a valuable resource for the local community. This will include an environmentally friendly community visitor centre. We will be continuing to share the plans for the building and all the options for how the site develops will involve the local community.
We would like to develop opportunities for people to learn about water and wetlands on their doorstep. With the support of the community, we will establish Thrupp Lake as a wildlife sanctuary and special place where people get close to nature and see wildlife first-hand.
With community support
This man-made lake is highly valued by local residents, naturalists and the Friends of Radley Lakes group. The landowner, RWE npower, has given the Earth Trust a 25-year lease to enable this project to happen and plays an active role in the future of the site through direct involvement via the newly-formed Radley Lakes Wetland Centre Management Group, as well as continued funding support. Through cooperation with adjacent landowners a permissive pathway has also been agreed to recently, which will enable open access and public enjoyment of a wider area of the site.
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Thank you to Jo Cartmell for text & images