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Southway Valley (LNR)

Southway ValleySouthway Valley is located in the north of Plymouth. It's a good sized green space covering 17 hectares (that's about 17 full-sized football pitches) where you can enjoy walking and playing as well as exploring nature. There's even a miniature steam railway!

Southway Valley has some beautiful woodland to stroll through. A babbling brook follows a course into Tamerton Creek, part of the Tamar Estuary. It's a designated Local Nature Reserve and home to a variety of wildlife.

Stepping Stones to Nature have worked with local residents, pupils from Beechwood and Oakwood Primary schools and the Southway Drive Allotments Association to plant a community orchard in the reserve. Southway Valley also has a new community orchard, planted and cared for by local residents and groups. The trees are old West Country varieties and will hopefully supply us with plenty of apples in years to come!

Why not take the family for a walk through the woods starting at the miniature railway and picnic area down to the meadow and play area at Frontfield Cresent? It's about a 2km walk.

Southway Valley map


The site provides a valuable landscape and biodiversity resource for the area containing a number of habitats including, woodland, hedgerows, grassland and a stream.

The woodlands at Southway are home to several ancient woodland flowers including the common spotted orchid, bluebell, primrose, yellow pimpernel, wild garlic and pignut.

For more detailed information on access and the management see documents below:

Management plan

Habitat survey

Improvements map

Location map

Management unit map

Site features map

Walks and features

  • Playgrounds at the north of the site on Pendeen Crescent and at the south of the site on Frontfield Crescent (open all year and inspected weekly)
  • Network of paths throughout the site
  • 600m circular walking route around the miniature railway suitable for buggies and wheelchairs
  • Miniature Steam Railway
  • Picnic benches at either end of the reserve
  • Other seating throughout the reserve
  • Orchard

Remember this is a Local Nature Reserve, please be considerate to wildlife and to other users:

  • Don't pick wild flowers or plants
  • Don't disturb animals
  • Take your litter home
  • Keep dogs under control
  • Keep dogs out of stream area
  • Clean up after your dogs
  • No camping
  • No motorbikes
  • No fires


  • Steps and slopes at most entrances

Travel and directions

  • 300m from Southway Shopping Centre on Southway Drive
  • Accessible by public transport with bus stops at Southway Drive to the north of the reserve and Upland Drive to the south of the reserve
  • No official car park (some car parking available on Pendeen Crescent to the north of the site and Frontfield Crescent at the western end)
  • Sudden Oak Death is a contagious fungus that can be spread naturally through air currents, watercourses and rain splash and can also be spread by humans through infection on shoes, dogs paws and bicycle wheels