Discovering Radyr Woods
Radyr Woods after a light frost this November.
Radyr Woods is an attractive Site of Nature Conservation with an ancient semi-natural wooded escarpment on the southern edge of the village of Radyr, near Cardiff. The Community Council manages Radyr Woods. But the real stars are the Friends of Radyr Woods who mend the treads on the steps, litter pick, coppice, and who want us all to have a real oasis in our community to for us all to enjoy. To read the Friends’ constitution, click here.
The Friends of Radyr Woods (or ‘Radyr Woods Wardens’ as they have come to be known) are volunteers who regularly hold working parties in the woods to keep them attractive and pleasant.
The Radyr Woods Wardens are always pleased to welcome new volunteers willing to help. So whenever we flag up a working party, on this page, do please feel you too can come along.
The Cardiff Conservation Volunteers have been coppicing for us.There is a lot more to do but at least some has been done before the birds return to nest.
The Cardiff Conservation Volunteers also helped us replace the old Boardwalk with a new one made with recyclable material which we hope will prove to be a good decision. . Thank you Cardiff Conservation Volunteers. This is a link to their photos on the Boardwalk.
Covering an area of approximately 14 acres and including a Local Nature Reserve, Radyr Woods provide a wide variety of wildlife habitats and features, including ponds, springs, grassy glades and heath land.
Enjoy a glimpse of life in the woods in April and listen to the birds by clicking on the thumbnail below.
Over 50 species of wildflowers have been identified in the woods including, Yellow Archangel, Pignut and Travellers Joy. Kingfishers are frequent visitors and moorhen frequently breed in both ponds. Now the larger duck pond has been cleared of scrub and opened out, ducks are attracted and breed there.
Apart from the local nature reserve (Hermit Wood) where access is controlled, pedestrian access to Radyr Woods is unrestricted. A network of well maintained footpaths, boardwalks, steps and interpretation panels throughout the wood, allows the visitor easy access to a mixed woodland with an intriguing history.
A small mound is all that remains of a late-Prehistoric burnt mound. Here hot stones would have been immersed in water until it boiled and the burnt and broken stones or pot boilers have formed the mound. It is not known what the mound was used for – perhaps for rituals? Discovered in 1911, it is evidence that the site has been inhabited from early times. A holy well dating from the 10th century is also reputed to exist on the site, and in medieval times Radyr Woods would have formed a part of the walled deer park of Radyr Court the historic home of the Mathew family.
The area was farmed and quarried up to the mid 20th century. Conglomerate stone from the Radyr Quarry was extensively used in the construction of both Llandaff Cathedral and Cardiff Castle.
The Marquis Estate now occupies the former rail marshalling yards. These were for many years a massive assembly point for assembling coal trains en route from the Rhondda, Cynon and Taff Vale Valleys to Cardiff and Penarth Docks.
Owned jointly by Cardiff Council and Radyr & Morganstown Community Council, Radyr Woods is managed and principally funded by R&MCC. All work undertaken is in line with a detailed management plan.
Improvement and maintenance work began in 1982 with the construction of bridges, fences and boardwalks. Today maintenance and improvement work is undertaken by a group of volunteer wardens and regularly includes tree planting, scrub clearance and construction work, and litter clearance.
The efforts of all agencies involved in Radyr Woods have been recognised by the winning of both local and national conservation awards and have resulted in an attractive accessible and well used local woodland.
From within Radyr, The Woods can be accessed from
Taff Terrace where there is a small car park
Junction Terrace via a public footpath to a new public open space
Fisher Hill Way
The depicted map locates important features. For the benefit of all visitors, please observe the following:
No Horse Riding
No Cycling or Motorcycling
No litter or Criminal Damage
Keep dogs under control
Do not pick wildflowers, and respect wildlife
For further information contact Clerk to the Council, Radyr & Morganstown Community Council, Old Church Rooms, Park Road, Radyr, Cardiff
Tel: 029 2084 2213