Bodenham Lake Nature Reserve is 44.5 hectares (110 acres) of varied habitat including riverside meadows, veteran orchard, newly planted orchard, a 'gravel' area and wet woodland. The lake itself is the largest area of open water in the county.
You can picnic and stroll through beautiful orchards as well as river and lakeside meadows. However, as the lake is an important overwintering and breeding area for birds and other aquatic wildlife, approximately half of the site is managed as a wildlife refuge with restricted public access. A public hide allows you to enjoy views of the birds and other wildlife in the refuge. More than 160 species of birds have been recorded at this important site, while otters also frequent the lake.
- Car park with spaces for 15 cars
- Picnic tables and benches
- Sailing centre
There are no public toilet facilities at the site. Please note that the car park is closed and locked between dusk and dawn to stop anti-social behaviour and vandalism.
Swimming is discouraged due to deep water and underwater hazards. It can also be dangerous for animals to swim in the water at certain times of the year. Please also see Algae warnings.
Boats, jet skis, sailing
No boats, jet skis or sailing is permitted at the lake.
No fishing is permitted at Bodenham Lake.
Bodenham Lake is a popular dog walking destination. In addition to the guidelines and byelaws which apply to all our countryside sites, please keep dogs under control especially when the pasture and orchards are being grazed by livestock, and take note of signs to keep pets out of the water when there is a risk of algae in the lake.
During warm, sunny weather there is a risk of potentially toxic algal blooms within the lake. This natural phenomenon occurs due to temperature changes in the water. As the algae decompose, they release a toxin into the water, which may cause a range of symptoms and illness (and possibly death given sufficient exposure or ingestion) in both animals and humans. When warnings are in force, dogs (and any other pets) should be kept on a lead and out of the water. You should also not swim, bathe or fish in the water. Please obey onsite signage.
History of site
Until the 1920s, when the site was used for gravel extraction, the land was part of Lady Close Farm. When gravel extraction came to an end, the pits were linked together resulting in the lake. Leominster District Council purchased the land in 1994 to safeguard the site for informal recreation and conservation.
The site is currently managed and maintained by the Parks, Countryside and Leisure Development service.