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Badgeworth is one of the smallest nature reserves in the world and contains the rare adder's-tongue spearwort more commonly known as the Badgeworth buttercup.

Badgeworth, near Cheltenham, is a SSSI and become the first nature reserve in the county when owner Mr. Hedley presented it to the Society for the Promotion pf Nature Reserves in 1933. It was once in the Guinness World of Records for being the smallest nature reserve in the world in 1964.

It is home to the rare adder's-tongue spearwort, locally called the Badgeworth buttercup, found at only two sites in the UK. The nature reserve is small and opens its doors once a year in June, when the buttercup is in flower, which attracts botanists from all over the UK. The pond in the nature reserve is the 'pool' in the name of the lane 'Cold Pool Lane'.  

The nature reserve is also home to a number of other plants, which include lesser spearwort, common water-crowfoot, narrow leaved plantain, marsh speedwell, pink water-speedwell, fen bedstraw and marsh foxtail. Over 305 species of beetle have been recorded at this nature reserve. Common frog, great crested, smooth and palmate newt breed in the pond.  

Badgeworth nature reserve was handed over to the newly formed Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust in 1962 and became our first nature reserve.

Species and habitats


Nearby nature reserves

The Park Campus, University of Gloucestershire
2 miles - Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust
Crickley Hill
3 miles - Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust
Barrow Wake
3 miles - Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust

Nature reserve map

Reserve information

Cold Pool Lane, near Badgeworth.
Map reference
Great for...
Best time to visit
Jun - Jun
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Opening Times
Limited Opening
1.10 hectares
Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)

Permit required to access the nature reserve. The reserve opens once a year in June when the buttercup is in flower.
No dogs allowed
Grazing animals
Reserve manager
Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust
Tel: 01452 383333