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A family walking their dogs in the park at Erddig, Wrexham, Wales
A family walking their dogs on the Big Wood trail at Erddig | © National Trust Images/Natalie Overthrow

Erddig Big Wood trail

Erddig's Big Wood trail is a short circular walk taking you around the 1,200-acre estate. Discover a secret meadow and an array of archaeological features on the route. Wander through woodland and explore the ancient remains of a Norman motte and bailey castle as you join the historic and mysterious Wat’s Dyke way.

Orange waymarkers

Look out for the orange coloured waymarkers that signpost this trail through the estate.

Total steps: 13

Total steps: 13

Start point

Erddig car park. Grid reference: SJ 32782 48091

Step 1

Start by the dovecote and walk east through the coach park continuing straight on to the stony track. Pass the dead oak tree (Quercus robur) on your right which is home to barn owls and a myriad of invertebrates.

Step 2

Follow the path round to the left and past the ha-ha (a feature to keep deer away from the garden).

The ornate wrought iron gate at Erddig, Wales
The ornate gate at Erddig | © National Trust Images/Rupert Truman

Step 3

Continue along the path and enter Big Wood.

Step 4

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

Step 5

Continue straight on, you will notice fallen beech trees as you walk round.

Step 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 garden.

Step 7

Continue along the path until it drops off down to the right – this is the base of the 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.

Step 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).

Step 9

Halfway down the avenue on your left, follow the path down where you can see a large mound, this is the motte part of the castle.

Step 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.

Step 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 in Erddig, Wales, where water flows down into a circular aperture, while a family watches with autumn trees in the background
Visitors at Erddig's Cup and Saucer water feature | © Natalie Overthrow

Step 12

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

Step 13

Continue up the hill and through the trees. Head left to the dovecote where you started.

End point

Erddig car park, Grid reference: SJ 32782 48091

Trail map

Trail map for Big Wood walk follows the orange waymarkers
Trail map for Big Wood walk follows the orange waymarkers | © National Trust Images/Smart Graphic Designers

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