Grid ref: TL 986 209 (click for o/s map)
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Friday Wood is a mosaic of woodland (some of it ancient), open areas and scrub, owned by the Ministry of Defence. It has a good range of woodland plants but is particularly important for its butterflies and moths.
White admirals, now restricted to only a few Essex woods, were 'rediscovered' there in 1995 and it also has white-letter hairstreaks, whose caterpillars feed on elm. Both butterflies fly from July onwards but, unfortunately, spend much of their time in the tree canopy, so you need to work quite hard to spot them.
It is also a good place to hear nightingales.
The main parking area is on a minor road that runs south from Berechurch Hall Road to Layer, parallel to the B1026 (Colchester–Maldon).
Regular bus services run along Berechurch Hall Road.
Accessible at all times.
Spring for woodland flowers and birdsong; July–August for butterflies and other insects.
Please keep to the waymarked rights of way and obey Army warning notices.