Woodlands and wetlands at The Vyne

Sarah Giles, Gardens and Countryside Manager Sarah Giles Gardens and Countryside Manager
Tufted Drake at The Vyne

Don't forget to take time to explore our woodland and wetlands when you visit us. Stretch your legs and enjoy following one of our several way marked paths across our 452 hectare estate.



History of the woods

The main park was formed by the lords of Sherborne Coudray after 1268.  Fish and game would have been gathered from the park and the remains of the medieval fishponds still remain in Morgaston Woods. 

In Tudor times a much larger area was crossed by many more tracks linking small groups of settlement.  Parkland and arable land tenanted out, woodland managed by NT and forestry commission.

By 1608 much of the parkland was being turned into farmland which it has been ever since, leaving about 40 acres  around the house as gardens and park. The park is planted with English Oak, supplemented by  Turkey Oak and a few exotic species.

During World War 2, Morgaston Wood was used for military storage purposes, reputedly for an ammunition dump and railway system.  What survives today is the concrete road and remains of a concrete loading bay.


The wetlands

The wetlands were formed in early 21st century from the remains of a water meadow. Water meadows were commonly used between the 17th century to the early 20th century to improve the growth of grass by the water raising the temperature above the air temperature and supplying additional nutrients. Water flowed continuously over the sward of the grass without completely covering it.