Frith Wood nature reserve is a wonderful ancient beech wood that straddles the ridge overlooking the Painswick and Slad Valleys near Stroud.


Three miles north east of Stroud, the wood lies on the B4070 near Bull's Cross
A static map of Frith Wood

Know before you go

24 hectares

Entry fee


Grazing animals


Walking trails

The site sits on very steep and undulating ground. Paths are uneven and can reach a linear gradient of 10% in places.




On a lead

When to visit

Opening times

Open at all times

Best time to visit

All year

About the reserve

There are a number of footpaths that go through the reserve, which is part of the longer Slad Valley Wildlife Way linking Snows Farm and Swift's Hill nature reserves in a five mile circular walk.  The beech trees in Frith Wood are believed to be planted from Belgian seed sometime after the Napoleonic Wars.  The wood is home to rare plants such as wood barley, white helleborine and yellow bird's nest. In spring there is a lovely display of bluebells and wild garlic. Although small and rarely seen a very rare snail called Ena montana has been recorded here. The nature reserve is part of a larger SSSI that includes Bull's Cross and Juniper Hill.  

Contact us

Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust
Contact number: 01452 383333

Environmental designation

Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)

How to get there:

Post code:  Nearest post code is GL6 7QS, which will take you to Yokehouse lane, slightly west of Frith Wood entrance and Bull’s Cross.

Grid reference: SO 87721 08717

Full directions:

FROM STROUD: Follow the B4070 for three miles. Go through Slad village until you come to Bull’s Cross. Parking is available on the right in the large layby, where cars can be left at owner’s risk. (Meeting point)

FROM CHELTENHAM: From the Air Balloon roundabout take the A417 towards Stroud, after just 0.9 miles turn right onto the B4070, then turn left after 0.5 miles to stay on the B4070 for 5 miles (becoming Slad Road) where you will reach Bull’s Cross. On the left is a large layby where cars can be left at owners’ risk. (Meeting point)

FROM GLOUCESTER:  Follow the B4073 until you reach the A46 T-junction, Painswick. Here turn right onto the A46. Then take the second left onto Bisley Street. Take the second right onto St Mary’s Street and the first left onto Tibbiwell Lane (becoming Greenhouse Lane) and follow for 1 mile. Then turn left onto Yokehouse Lane, where you’ll shortly reach Slad Road and Bull’s Cross. Turn left and parking is available in a layby on the immediate right, where cars can be left at owners’ risk. (Meeting point)

Parking Capacity: The Bull’s Cross layby allows for roughly 15 cars – please park considerably. Cars left at owners’ risk.