Cribb's Meadow is a small but intricate mosaic of diverse habitats, made up of grasslands, two ponds and a disused railway line, where scrub and mature trees are taking back the land. A walk here is quiet and peaceful, especially in the spring when birdsong fills the air. If you look closely in the spring, you might be lucky enough to see great crested newts dancing in the ponds.

Location

The Drift, Sewstern
LE15 7RQ (Fosse Lane)

OS Map Reference

SK 899188 (Sheet 130)
A static map of Cribb's Meadow

Know before you go

Size
5 hectares

Entry fee

Free

Parking information

After 5km turn right towards Sewstern and park on the right-hand verge just after the junction.

Grazing animals

Livestock may be present

Access

The reserve lies 5km east of the village of Wymondham on the Leicestershire/ Lincolnshire border. Take the minor road, Wymondham Hill, east out of Wymondham towards Thistleton. The reserve may be entered through hand gates, one north of the former railway bridge, the other immediately to the south of it. Please remember to close these gates, otherwise stock may get on to the road. There are steps to this reserve.

Dogs

On a lead
On a lead when livestock present. Under close control at all other times

When to visit

Opening times

Always open

Best time to visit

Summer

About the reserve

Cribbs Meadow is a small but intricate mosaic of diverse habitats, made up of grasslands, two ponds and a disused railway line, where scrub and mature trees are taking back the land. A walk here is quiet and peaceful, especially in the spring when birdsong fills the air. If you look closely in the spring, you might be lucky enough to see great crested newts dancing in the ponds.

In later spring and summer, if you look closely, you’ll be able to spot beautiful orchids, including green-winged and common spotted. Other wildflowers include adder's tongue and cowslip (in the spring), agrimony, great burnet and yellow rattle (in the summer). The railway line has a partial covering of trees and scrub with buckthorn and dogwood, overtopped by oak, ash and crack willow in places. Keep an eye out in the summer for butterflies like grizzled skipper and green hairstreak in the grasslands.

The distinctive field pattern in this area probably dates back to the 16th Century. The reserve, together with the field to its north, was glebe belonging to the Vicar of Edmondthorpe until 1921, though cut by the railway in 1893. The reserve's name derives from Cribb's Lodge to the south-west, commemorating the last bare-fist prize fight in England at Thistleton Gap, two fields to the south on 28th September 1811, between Tom Cribb and Tom Molyneux.

Environmental designation

National Nature Reserve (NNR)
Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)