Erddig Big Wood trail through Emes' pleasure park

Walking trail

Erddig's Big Wood trail is a short circular walk taking you round the orange waymarker route on the 1,200-acre estate with an array of archaeological features. As you reach the top of the motte (or mound) discover the secret meadow, formerly the bailey where the castle village would have been.

Discover 'Cathedral Aisle'

William Emes incorporated the motte into his pleasure park design to create ‘Cathedral Aisle’ with two rows of beech and hornbeam to walk through; the perfect place for quiet reflection. The estate is a haven for wildlife. Look out for bluebells and wild garlic in spring and listen out for woodpeckers as you walk through Big Wood.

Bring family and friends on a walk at Erddig

Map

Erddig orange Big Wood walk

Start:

Erddig car park

1

Start by the dovecote and walk east through the coach park, continuing straight on to the stony track. On your right you’ll see the dead oak tree (Quercus robur) home to barn owls and a myriad of invertebrates.

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Enjoy a winter walk with family and friends at Erddig

2

Follow the path round to the left and past the ha-ha, where if you look westwards (to your left), you will see the back of the house, the canal water feature and a glimpse of the 18th century formal gardens. The elaborate wrought iron gates from Stansty Hall, thought to be constructed by the Davis brothers, were installed at Erddig in 1977 when the house opened to the public.

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Enjoy beautiful views around the parkland at Erddig

3

Continue along the path and enter Big Wood.

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4

Follow the path round to the left and take the right hand path, following the orange waymarker.

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Follow winding footpaths on Erddig's Big Wood walk

5

Continue straight on, you will notice fallen beech trees as you walk round. These have been left as essential habitats for many species of invertebrates and fungi which enjoy feeding on the decaying wood, such as woodlice and earthworms.

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Wrap up warm and head out on a walk at Erddig this winter

6

Continue straight ahead as the other routes turn right. As you follow the path round to the left, the woodland opens up a little. On your left there is a straight avenue through Big Wood to Wolf’s Den and the gardens. The idea is that from the Garden gates you can see straight through to our eleventh century Norman motte and bailey castle remains.

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Bring family and friends on a walk at Erddig

7

Continue along the path until it drops off down to the right – this is the base of our Motte and Bailey Castle. If you want to walk on to the Motte and Bailey head down the slope to the interpretation panel and then continue up the steep hill. Please take care on the slopes, especially in wet and slippery conditions. If you do not wish to go on to the motte and bailey, please continue to step 10.

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8

Once at the top of the steep hill it opens out into a flat grass meadow area. This area would have been the village, with houses and shops, probably including a bakery, butchers, armoury and blacksmith. Now there is an avenue of beech and hornbeam (carpinus betulus). 

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Let Erddig's winter walk fire young imaginations

9

Half-way down the avenue on the left, follow the path down where you can see a large mound, this is the motte. On top would have been a wooden palisade with a keep, which would have been a vantage point used for soldiers to keep watch of invaders as well as where Hugh D’Avranches would have stayed. 

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10

Once you have explored the motte and bailey, retrace your steps back to the interpretation panel and up the slope. Stay to the right and continue straight on through Big Wood. You will reach a wooden fence and gates. Follow the path down to the right, down the hill. Half way down the steps on your right is one section of Wat’s Dyke, the second of our Scheduled Ancient Monuments.

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Learn more about the motte and bailey at Eddig

11

At the bottom of the hill go through the black kissing gate and turn left. To see the ‘Cup and Saucer’ cyclindrical cascading water feature, head over the wooden bridge to the right. The Cup and Saucer waterfall was designed by William Emes in the 1770s along with many other features on the estate. 

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See the Cup and Saucer waterfall designed by William Emes

12

Retrace your steps back to the path and go through the wooden kissing gate alongside a cattle grid onto a tarmac road.

Play a game of pooh sticks down the river

13

Continue up the hill and through the trees, as you pass the white gates to the west front of the house, you'll see our Coachman's tea garden, serving hot drinks and light snacks at weekends and on busy days. Head left back to the dovecote.

Two women enjoying a walk in the countryside, one clasps a hot drink

End:

Erddig car park

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Erddig Big Wood trail through Emes' pleasure park

Terrain

Steps near the Motte and Bailey.

Erddig Big Wood trail through Emes' pleasure park

Contact us

email: erddig@nationaltrust.org.uk

Telephone: 01978 355314

Erddig Big Wood trail through Emes' pleasure park

How to get here

Address
Erddig car park
By train

Wrexham Central 2½ miles; Wrexham General 3½ miles via Erddig Road and footpath.

By road

Signposted frm A525 on the Whitchurch road; From the A483 exit at junction 3.

By bus

Take the Arriva 2 from Wrexham, alight at Felin Puleston, 1 mile walk through Erddig Country Park

By bicycle

Cycle route information

Erddig Big Wood trail through Emes' pleasure park

Facilities and access

  • Toilets are available in the Midden Yard and in Wolf's Den at the property.
  • Tea garden and restaurant on site, please check opening times.
  • Second-hand bookshop and gift shop on site
  • Free parking
  • EV charging point
  • Dogs welcome on leads throughout the 1,200-acre country park.
  • Sorry dogs not allowed in the Grade I-listed house and garden, but welcome through the tea garden and to the Midden Yard.