London Parks & Gardens Trust

A Walk through Islington

Barnsbury Wood

Barnsbury Wood

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After exploring the square and crescent gardens, go round Thornhill Crescent and into Crescent Street. On the right is the entrance to Barnsbury Wood (open Tuesdays 2-4pm).


Barnsbury Wood is the smallest local nature reserve in London. The triangular area covered by the wood was originally the garden of St Andrew's Vicarage, at 7 Huntingdon Street, where George Thornhill lived. The vicarage became a private school, then flats, but from the early 20th century the garden was abandoned and became woodland. In 1977 a group of local residents campaigned to save the area from housing development. In 1981, the Barnsbury Wood Co-operative again fought to save the wood from development, and had it designated for educational purposes. In 1996, the wood was granted Local Nature Reserve status, and is the largest area of woodland in the borough.